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Solving the Goaltending Issue - Can it be done?


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So far 4 games in the goaltending is in shambles.  Not a surprise, but the cause is more then mediocre play.  Ullmark is out dealing with personal issues and Hutton is now out with concussion type injury.

The longer these guys are out, the worse our already mediocre situation gets with the tandem of Jo Jo and Togarski.

Obviously KA needs clarity on Hutton’s and Ullmark’s situation before pulling the trigger on any trade.  However, even a healthy tandem of Ullmark and Hutton isn’t great and should have been upgraded anyway.

So who is available.  AZ has 3 good goalies on their active roster, so does Toronto.  They kept 3 to avoid losing one to waivers, but maybe they’ll trade one?  LV wants to move on from Fleury and his big contract.  Maybe something can be done here as well.  Some in the NHL thread mentioned prices going up because we are desperate.  Possibly, but having 3 or more trade partners probably puts a limit on desperation price gouging.  While we aren’t likely to “win” the trade, that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be done.  

We need to make the playoffs this season.  Fixing the goaltending must be done.  Assuming Cozens, Quinn and maybe UPL are off the table,  KA is going to have to get creative to get it fixed.  

The question is who and at what cost.

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Toronto waived Dell and he was picked up.

I think the same happened to another goalie as well, but I can't remember who.

Do we have any clarity as to the availability of Hutton or Ullmark?

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13 minutes ago, dudacek said:

Toronto waived Dell and he was picked up.

I think the same happened to another goalie as well, but I can't remember who.

Do we have any clarity as to the availability of Hutton or Ullmark?

They should have been looking to trade for a goalie regardless of Ullmark.  If he’s out for awhile they need to be making a move ASAP.  
 

Again, why are we wasting a season of Dahlin on his ELC, Jack in his prime and the top free agent in the league one year deal??  So much riding on the season and Adams makes zero goaltending moves.  
 

I will keep banging the drum that not addressing goaltending this offseason is as bad as JBot not addressing the 2C in prior offseason.  It is, and has been for the past twelve months, an obvious area of the roster that had to be upgraded.  What a waste.

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I am the first to bag on our lousy tenders. But. In this season, excluding the first game, our tending has been fine. 

Last night they gave up 2 by the 3rd string goalie. 

I think the issue is scoring so far

 

If ullmark is out for a while, they need someone, but otherwise, so far so good

Edited by miles
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The previous post makes sense, but for the fact that Hutton now has a head or neck injury and we don't know how long he will be out.  The 3rd string goalie gave up 1 and the last was an empty net goal.  If the 3rd string goalie is starting the next game with the 4th string goalie as his backup, yes, we have a problem.

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Idk.

I don't want to give up on this season, I really don't, but it's a mess anyway with covid (Carolina games already postponed) and we're off to a less than stellar start and the bottom of the roster is seriously weak so do we really want to trade the future for an interim goalie that'll give us a long shot at best for a playoff that'll probably end badly if we even make it at all?

If Ullmark stays away for any length and Hutton can't come back quickly (or plays poorly in return with recurring issues if it is a concussion) we're sunk anyway. Feels a lot like the tank year and maybe it'll become that. At least Hall should get us some decent assets at the deadline (sigh). 

I just don't know, but I see a no win scenario. 

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1 hour ago, miles said:

I am the first to bag on our lousy tenders. But. In this season, excluding the first game, our tending has been fine. 

Last night they gave up 2 by the 3rd string goalie. 

I think the issue is scoring so far

 

If ullmark is out for a while, they need someone, but otherwise, so far so good

The 3rd string goalie gave up one goal.  There last Philly goal was in empty net. 

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5 minutes ago, PerreaultForever said:

Idk.

I don't want to give up on this season, I really don't, but it's a mess anyway with covid (Carolina games already postponed) and we're off to a less than stellar start and the bottom of the roster is seriously weak so do we really want to trade the future for an interim goalie that'll give us a long shot at best for a playoff that'll probably end badly if we even make it at all?

If Ullmark stays away for any length and Hutton can't come back quickly (or plays poorly in return with recurring issues if it is a concussion) we're sunk anyway. Feels a lot like the tank year and maybe it'll become that. At least Hall should get us some decent assets at the deadline (sigh). 

I just don't know, but I see a no win scenario. 

Bottom of roster isn’t seriously weak. True issues are #2 center and in goal. All the underlying numbers have been very good for three of the four games. If Skinner converts a couple of his chances, this team would have won three of four games against the two best teams in its division.

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5 minutes ago, tom webster said:

Bottom of roster isn’t seriously weak. True issues are #2 center and in goal. All the underlying numbers have been very good for three of the four games. If Skinner converts a couple of his chances, this team would have won three of four games against the two best teams in its division.

I'm glad someone else watched the same four games I did.

No issues whatsoever with the way Eakin Rieder Lazar and Sheahan have played.

Eric Staal has been very disappointing. We may have to move Hall beside him to create a second line.

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11 minutes ago, tom webster said:

Bottom of roster isn’t seriously weak. True issues are #2 center and in goal. All the underlying numbers have been very good for three of the four games. If Skinner converts a couple of his chances, this team would have won three of four games against the two best teams in its division.

RW is a serious issue as are the 3rd and 2nd line centers.  We have no goals from any RW not named Sam and zero goals and only one assist from Eakin and Staal.  Not exactly killing it are they? Yes it’s early, but they just aren’t good enough.

Just because the plumbers are playing hard doesn’t mean they are good.  Playing hard and producing nothing is still nothing.

 

Edited by GASabresIUFAN
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5 minutes ago, GASabresIUFAN said:

RW is a serious issue as are the 3rd and 2nd line centers.  We have no goals from any RW not named Sam and zero goals and only one assist from Eakin and Staal.  Not exactly killing it are they? Yes it’s early, but they just aren’t good enough.

Just because the plumbers are playing hard doesn’t mean they are good.  Playing hard and producing nothing is still nothing.

 

You had your mind made up on this before the players touched the ice this season.

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21 minutes ago, tom webster said:

Bottom of roster isn’t seriously weak. True issues are #2 center and in goal. All the underlying numbers have been very good for three of the four games. If Skinner converts a couple of his chances, this team would have won three of four games against the two best teams in its division.

Well, aside from Lazar, who is playing well, what kind of scoring has the bottom given us? Olofsson's goals are on the PP I think so that leaves one goal by Rieder unless I forgot one. 

You'll argue that Skinner is playing well perhaps, but he hasn't scored, and that's his job. Cozens is growing/developing, but he's still going to take time. Staal is a dud. The rest does not measure up.  It's different names, but the same as last year. 

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24 minutes ago, Curt said:

You had your mind made up on this before the players touched the ice this season.

Yes, and no.  I was very concerned that our bottom 6 would produce nothing, but I thought Staal still had something in the tank (and still do).  I said we should only play 3 plumbers a night; one checking line.  Instead RK insists on 2.   Thus the plumbers are producing exactly what I thought they would.  Rieder is fast but has no hands.  Sheahan plays hard.  Eakin plays hard, wins draws but hasn't come close to scoring or creating.  I have always liked Lazar and like that he plays hard.  I'm thrilled he had a career game, but he'll likely disappear for the next 20 games.

The bottom line is I was concerned that our bottom 6 would produce nothing and outside of Lazar's wonderful game, they have produced 1 goal by Rieder.  Skinner Cozens and Eakin have no points despite playing hard and Sheahan has an assist.  So to paraphrase from Dennis Green, they are what I thought they were.  Basically they are proving my pre-season thesis.  I wish they were proving me wrong.

Back to topic:  Any goaltenders we know are available besides Fleury?

Edited by GASabresIUFAN
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1 hour ago, GASabresIUFAN said:

Just because the plumbers are playing hard doesn’t mean they are good.  Playing hard and producing nothing is still nothing.

 

The bottom 4 players (Sheahan, Reider, Lazar and Eakin) have combined for 3 ES goals in 4 games — pacing for 60 over an 80-game season.

They've also won faceoffs, allowed just 1 PP goal against and been plus players at ES.

Exactly what were you expecting?

Edited by dudacek
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If you're worried about production (IMO it's too small a sample size, but for the sake of discussion) the issue is the middle of the lineup:

Thompson, Cozens, Skinner and Staal: zero goals.

Eichel Hall, Olofsson and and Reinhart have five.

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Where is UPK? Still in Finland? On his way to US? Here but in quarantine?

What are the chances he can come in, play and get hot?

Is there even a real possibility he could play in the NHL this year? 

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1 hour ago, PerreaultForever said:

Well, aside from Lazar, who is playing well, what kind of scoring has the bottom given us? Olofsson's goals are on the PP I think so that leaves one goal by Rieder unless I forgot one. 

You'll argue that Skinner is playing well perhaps, but he hasn't scored, and that's his job. Cozens is growing/developing, but he's still going to take time. Staal is a dud. The rest does not measure up.  It's different names, but the same as last year. 

It’s four games and only 6 teams have scored more goals then them. The facts don’t equal your narrative. 
On top of that, in this league you are lucky of you get 50 goals from their bottom 6. So on average, you should have about 2.4 goals from your bottom 6. But like I said, it’s only been 6 games.

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Just want to say that 10 games is probably a minimum before numbers start to stabilize. 

Now the Sabres goaltending is different in that regards because we can already look back more than 10 games, the goalies are the same. I would argue we should allow the save % to average out a bit but I don't think an offseason does anything. 

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1 hour ago, Norcal said:

Where is UPK? Still in Finland? On his way to US? Here but in quarantine?

What are the chances he can come in, play and get hot?

Is there even a real possibility he could play in the NHL this year? 

Last year he played about 10 games in the AHL and was mostly quite bad.  Looks like he has been ok in Liiga, but not great.  I see no sign that he is ready for the NHL.

I would feel better about JJ or Tokarski in the Sabres net to be honest.

Edited by Curt
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