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Ranking Each Team’s Goaltending

posted Dec 12, 2017, 11:52 AM by Robert Vollman
Today, for no particular reason, I’m going to rank each team’s goaltending.

Those who keep up with the Hockey Abstract books are familiar with our quick-and-dirty ranking of NHL teams that is achieved by taking a weighted average of each goalie’s NHL stats over the past three seasons, and combined the starter and the backup in a 3-to-1 ratio. That does the job at a high level, but I’m going to go a little deeper here today. Not a lot deeper, just a little.

Specifically, I took that same weighted average over the past three seasons (or, technically, three and a third), and also added each goalie’s AHL data. I’ve also added a regression component for those goalies who haven’t faced at least 5,000 shots. One possible program is that this regression component might actually boost goalies who have barely played above goalies who have played a lot but haven’t done very well. Finally, I’m going to go beyond just the starter and the backup, and look at the team’s depth, as well. 

Oh, and no, this does not factor in shot quality factors, like shot location or even manpower situation. It doesn’t include the shootout, or any fancy metrics. It’s just straight-up save percentage, with all its strengths and shortcomings. As you will probably notice, the rankings in brackets refer to where the goalie ranks within his tier (starter, backup, depth), and not where he ranks overall. Ok, here we go.

1. Chicago Blackhawks
Starter: Corey Crawford .9237 (2nd)
Backup: Anton Forsberg .9185 (2nd)
Depth: Jean-Francois Berube .9092 (20th), Jeff Glass .9074 (33rd), Collin Delia .9069 (42nd)

2. Columbus Blue Jackets
Starter: Sergei Bobrovsky .9262 (1st)
Backup: Joonas Korpisalo .9123 (18th)
Depth: Matiss Kivlenieks .9065 (50th)

3. Anaheim Ducks
Starter: John Gibson .9216 (6th)
Backup: Ryan Miller .9165 (4th)
Depth: Reto Berra .9089 (22nd), Kevin Boyle .9066 (48th)

4. Tampa Bay Lightning
Starter: Andrei Vasilevskiy .9228 (3rd)
Backup: Peter Budaj .9142 (13th)
Depth: Connor Ingram .9058 (61st), Louis Domingue .9047 (68th)

5. Los Angeles Kings
Starter: Jonathan Quick .9226 (4th)
Backup: Darcy Kuemper .9149 (11th)
Depth: Jack Campbell .9133 (4th), Cal Petersen .9083 (27th), Jeff Zatkoff .9052 (65th)

6. Washington Capitals
Starter: Braden Holtby .9223 (5th)
Backup: Philipp Grubauer .9137 (14th)
Depth: Pheonix Copley .9122 (5th), Vitek Vanecek .9080 (30th), Adam Carlson .9073 (35th)

7. Minnesota Wild
Starter: Devan Dubnyk .9200 (8th)
Backup: Alex Stalock .9158 (5th)
Depth: Steve Michalek .9107 (11th), Niklas Svedberg .9078 (32nd)

8. Pittsburgh Penguins
Starter: Matt Murray .9198 (9th)
Backup: Tristan Jarry .9158 (6th)
Depth: Casey DeSmith .9115 (9th), Sean Maguire .9071 (39th)

9. Florida Panthers
Starter: Roberto Luongo .9209 (7th)
Backup: James Reimer .9117 (20th)
Depth: Harri Sateri .9073 (36th), Samuel Montembeault .9065 (51st)

10. Montreal Canadiens
Starter: Carey Price .9191 (10th)
Backup: Charlie Lindgren .9126 (17th)
Depth: Michael McNiven .9063 (53rd), Al Montoya .9061 (55th), Zachary Fucale .9039 (72nd), Antti Niemi .8962 (82nd)

11. Nashville Predators
Starter: Pekka Rinne .9189 (11th)
Backup: Juuse Saros .9135 (15th)
Depth: Harri Sateri .9073 (36th), Samuel Montembeault .9065 (51st)

12. Toronto Maple Leafs
Starter: Frederik Anderson .9179 (13th)
Backup: Curtis McElhinney .9116 (21st)
Depth: Garret Sparks .9174 (1st), Calvin Pickard .9142 (3rd), Kasimir Kaskisuo .9081 (29th)

13. Arizona Coyotes
Starter: Antti Raanta .9189 (12th)
Backup: Scott Wedgewood .9168 (3rd)
Depth: Marek Langhamer .9084 (25th), Adin Hill .9069 (41st), Hunter Miska .9062 (54th), Michael Leighton .9038 (73rd)

14. New Jersey Devils
Starter: Cory Schneider .9176 (14th)
Backup: Keith Kinkaid .9113 (22nd)
Depth: Ken Appleby .9051 (66th), Mackenzie Blackwood .9042 (71st)

15. San Jose Sharks
Starter: Martin Jones .9165 (16th)
Backup: Aaron Dell .9187 (1st)
Depth: Troy Grosenick .9090 (21st), Antoine Bibeau .9083 (26th), Mantas Armalis .9049 (67th)

16. Vancouver Canucks
Starter: Jacob Markstrom .9171 (15th)
Backup: Anders Nilsson .9153 (10th)
Depth: Thatcher Demko .9094 (19th), Richard Bachman .9034 (76th)

17. Vegas Golden Knights
Starter: Marc-Andre Fleury .9163 (17th)
Backup: Malcolm Subban .9155 (9th)
Depth: Dylan Ferguson .9072 (38th), Oscar Dansk .9067 (46th), Maxime Lagace .8971 (81st)

18. Winnipeg Jets
Starter: Connor Hellebuyck .9158 (18th)
Backup: Steve Mason .9121 (19th)
Depth: Michael Hutchinson .9161 (2nd), Eric Comrie .9106 (12th), Jamie Phillips .9073 (37th)

19. Carolina Hurricanes
Starter: Scott Darling .9155 (20th)
Backup: Cam Ward .9084 (28th)
Depth: Jeremy Smith .9094 (18th), Alex Nedeljkovic .9052 (64th)

20. New York Rangers
Starter: Henrik Lundqvist .9154 (21st)
Backup: Ondrej Pavelec .9097 (26th)
Depth: Alexandar Georgiev .9064 (52nd), Chris Nell .9059 (60th), Brandon Halverson .9044 (69th)

21. New York Islanders
Starter: Jaroslav Halak .9153 (22nd)
Backup: Thomas Greiss .9099 (25th)
Depth: Christopher Gibson .9094 (16th), Eamon McAdam .9060 (56th), Kristers Gudlevskis .9021 (79th)

22. Edmonton Oilers
Starter: Cam Talbot .9146 (24th)
Backup: Nick Ellis .9142 (12th)
Depth: Eddie Pasquale .9094 (17th), Laurent Brossoit .9069 (43rd)

23. Buffalo Sabres
Starter: Robin Lehner .9157 (19th)
Backup: Chad Johnson .9083 (29th)
Depth: Linus Ullmark .9104 (13th), Jonas Johansson .9069 (44th), Jason Kasdorf .9055 (62nd), Adam Wilcox .9029 (77th)

24. Boston Bruins
Starter: Tuukka Rask .9140 (26th)
Backup: Anton Khudobin .9127 (16th)
Depth: Dan Vladar .9087 (24th), Zane McIntyre .9082 (28th)

25. Detroit Red Wings
Starter: Jimmy Howard .9150 (23rd)
Backup: Petr Mrazek .9070 (30th)
Depth: Tom McCollum .9120 (6th), Jared Coreau .9108 (10th)

26. Dallas Stars
Starter: Ben Bishop .9143 (25th)
Backup: Kari Lehtonen .9035 (31st)
Depth: Philippe Desrosier .9074 (34th), Landon Bow .9059 (59th), Mike McKenna .9044 (70th)

27. Calgary Flames
Starter: Mike Smith .9139 (27th)
Backup: David Rittich .9157 (7th)
Depth: Jon Gillies .9095 (15th), Mason McDonald .9068 (45th), Eddie Lack .9037 (74th)

28. St. Louis Blues
Starter: Jake Allen .9133 (30th)
Backup: Carter Hutton .9155 (8th)
Depth: Jordan Binnington .9120 (7th), Ville Husso .9080 (31st)

29. Philadelphia Flyers
Starter: Brian Elliott .9138 (29th)
Backup: Michal Neuvirth .9111 (23rd)
Depth: Anthony Stolarz .9117 (8th), Alex Lyon .9065 (49th), Dustin Tokarski .9035 (75th)

30. Ottawa Senators
Starter: Craig Anderson .9139 (28th)
Backup: Mike Condon .9109 (24th)
Depth: Adam Vay .9070 (40th), Marcus Hogberg .9066 (47th), Chris Driedger .9060 (57th), Danny Taylor .9059 (58th)

31. Colorado Avalanche
Starter: Semyon Varlamov .9087 (31st)
Backup: Jonathan Bernier .9089 (27th)
Depth: Andrew Hammond .9088 (23rd), Spencer Martin .9054 (63rd), Joe Cannata .9008 (80th)