With the 2011-12 season now in the rear view mirror I wanted to share some interesting stats with you regarding the playoffs we just witnessed.
Jonathan Quick stood on his head through the whole playoffs and especially in the finals. He is a worthy Conn Smythe winner. In fact he could be the best goaltender to win the Conn Smythe ever. He played in 20 games including all 16 wins. His GAA was a staggering 1.41 with an otherworldly .946 save percentage. The closest anyone has ever come to that was Jean-Sebastien Giguere’s 2002-2003 campaign where he won the Conn Smythe as the losing goaltender. That season he posted a .945 save percentage.
Last year’s Conn Smythe winner, Tim Thomas, put up a .940 save percentage and in Patrick Roy’s historic 1993 Stanley Cup run he posted a .929. Interestingly, Dominic Hasek never topped .920. Personally, I think both goalies are overrated, but the reason for this could be more related to how the game has changed. The most fascinating thing about this research is the fact that the only other goalie to play in 12 or more games and put up a .946 was Patrick Lalime in his 7-5 campaign with the Ottawa Senators. He only faced 332 shots that year compared to Quick’s 538.
Martin Brodeur also had one of the best performances of his career, and Mike Smith saw his value skyrocket as he faced 607 shots in just 16 games. His shot total was greater than Quick’s despite four additional games. He finished with a .944 save percentage and averaged a whopping 37.5 shots a game.
Daniel Briere has quickly become one of the most productive playoff performers of our time. He has averaged more than a point a game in more than 100 NHL playoff games. This year he had 13 points in 11 games, but still took second chair to a teammate. Claude Giroux potted 8 goals and 17 points in just 11 games. This combined with his no famous leadership that helped beat their regional rival Penguins should be enough to cement this playoff performance as one of the best in a season where a team didn’t win the Cup.
The Devils just couldn’t generate the scoring chances needed to put away the Kings. Part of the reason for this was their inability to hit the net. Analysts chalk this up to the fact they had so little net to shoot at with Quick being as good as he was. Regardless, their top duo of Ilya Kovalchuk and Zach Parise let the playoffs with 46 and 33 missed shots.
Everyone knows the story of the Kings single road loss. However, they attained that with leadership from their captain. Dustin Brown’s 12 points in 11 road games were the most of the playoffs. Followed by Adam Henrique’s 10 points in 13 games.
Interestingly neither team had a single player in the Top 10 of Minutes Per Game in all situations, even strength, power play ice time. Willie Mitchell was the single player on either Stanley Cup finalists to crack the Top 10 in any ice time category finishing 7th with 4:40 minutes per game on the penalty kill.
Coach Matthew Perry
Fantasy Hockey Coach Home