From Survival to Revival

Justin Goldman

2009-11-09

Anderson

 

The true test of a warrior's valor is not if his skin gets pierced, but how he fights when the blood flows from his body.

 

So far this season, goaltending has been nothing short of a battle for sheer survival. Heavy traffic in front of the net, blatant crease-crashing, bad bounces, even elusive factors like the H1N1 virus, a skate blade to the inner thigh, a cracked rib and more are turning positive performances into terrible outings in an instant.

 

Any goalie can fall victim to these things at any given moment, so playing well, and thus being a valuable fantasy asset, is all about bouncing back quickly. But what does it take for goalies to overcome these battle wounds? It takes an ability to blot out the many factors that can cause mental distractions (noise) by being as focused as possible.

 

Another term for this could be called rebound control. But not the kind where pucks are strategically relocated to low-traffic areas – the kind where bad memories of the previous game are erased and a strong work ethic, responsibility and extreme focus carries a goalie forward in a positive manner.

 

JAROSLAV HALAK AND CAREY PRICE

 

As if there already wasn't enough drama surrounding Carey Price and Jaroslav Halak, there's someone else stirring up a controversy without either goalie having a say in the situation. Yes, I said it. Controversy. The one term I despise more than any other when it comes to goaltending now truly exists in the most heated hockey market in the world.

 

Allan Walsh is the player agent that currently represents Halak. The Slovakian goalie is 5-2-0 with a mediocre 2.85 GAA and .893 save percentage and has stepped in nicely when called upon. Price is 3-7-0 with a sour 3.30 GAA and .894 save percentage, but recently made 42 saves in a 2-1 win over Boston last Thursday. These are not numbers any fantasy manager enjoys seeing, but at the same time the team hasn't lived up to expectations offensively.

 

Now I won't waste time explaining what Walsh said that caused this controversy, but rather point you in the right direction. Just check out All Habs' blog and you'll be in the know. As you can see, Walsh's weak, unnecessary comment directed towards Price's struggles has opened Pandora's Box. Without asking for any of this, both Price and Halak will have to answer annoying questions the media has no right asking.

 

Many fans are furious because an agent for one goalie pointed a finger at the other, which in turn created an unnecessary distraction that could perpetuate the struggles in go