Tuesday, January 02, 2007

AGHHH!!! Bruins fall to Leafs

Last night at The Hanger in Toronto the B's fell 5-1 to the lousy Leafs. This has to be their most embarrassing loss of the season. They have lost by more and have played worse games but not to a team as pathetic as The Leafs. Take a look at The Leafs lineup - they have a bunch of nobodys!

How bad were the Bruins? Hal Gill scored a goal - nuf said! I hate losing to The Leafs!!!

The Bruins started out ok but after about 10 minutes into the game they started to fall apart and never recovered. Timmy let in 2 softies which brings me back to a point I made last post - he has to play all the time to stay on top of his game. One game off and he was trying to find his groove most of the game. Some goalies need rest now and then to perform but The Trapper seems to be at his best when he is constantly played without any rest. He gets into a zone and stays there - a game on the pine seems to get him out of this zone - please no more rest for Timmy!

We play the Leafs at home in our next game and look for The B's to come out strong. There is no way they will allow themselves to be beaten like this by The Leafs again. This is a team of determination and unlike last years team they will not fold but actually come out stronger because of what occured last night.

Our offence seems to have taken a few nights off recently but look for a goal explosion on Thursday night in the rematch.

Go Bruins Go !!!



Blogger Doobie said...

Ugh. Another night where they're done in by ex-players. Not only did Hal Gill have a goal, but Raycroft had an outstanding night stopping 27 of 28 shots on goal.

As for Thomas, you need to give him *some* rest occasionally...

2:35 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger jimbuff said...

For rest for Thomas; if he does need some - give him a couple of practices off or the second game when they play consecitive nights. He plays better the more he plays and does not yet show signs of fatigue when he plays alot.

3:06 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

does not yet show signs of fatigue when he plays alot.

We've seen that on the 3rd and 4th goal...

4:28 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger jimbuff said...

If you read my post you would have seen that I was saying that those goals were b/c he had a game off and seems to take a while to get his groove back when this happens. These goals were b/c he had a game off and was out of the zone which is the exact opposite as what you are implying.
He plays better when he plays more - with time off it takes him a while to get his mindset back.

7:49 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger Doobie said...

Buff, I'm going to have to disagree with you on this one (apparently my forte recently).

Although his best work came in November during that flurry of games he played, the stats show that his worst work came after two and three day rests. Excluding the first game of the season (where he had a whole off-season of rest), there have been six games this season where Thomas allowed 5+ goals. Three of those games came on two days rest and the other three came on three days rest. Plus, there were three games he started but didn't finish (two on two days rest, the other on three)

8:38 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger neb said...

in 6 of the games where thomas has given up 5 or more goals his team has gotten 3 goals once and less than 3 five times....

this suggest a couple of possible things to me.... when the game gets out of hand the boys stop playing.... when pressing for offense they are really really suspect on d...

8:51 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger jimbuff said...

It sounds like you are agreeing with me unless I am misunderstanding you.
I am saying that with time off he doesn't play as well as he does with no time off - that seems to be the point you just made also.
Keep playing him and stop resting him.

8:55 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did you guys hear that Toivonen was sent to Providence.

It looks like Timmy will be getting no rest.

9:06 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger Doobie said...

Buff, I don't consider 2 or 3 day layoffs a lot of time off...that's pretty normal for hockey unless there's a busy weekend series. Therefore, his stinkers came on days with little to moderate rest.

Neb, you might be on to something too. If you look at Thomas' situational stats, you'll see that in his 17 victories, he's got a sparkling 1.97 GAA and .938 SV%. But in his losses, he's a horrible 4.59 and .866. There seems to be no in between...when Thomas has an off-night, the offense hasn't exactly rallied around him to help him out.

9:17 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger TreeBob said...

Welcome to the NHL Sauve.

9:20 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger jimbuff said...

Are you suggesting we rest Timmy more and play Rico fairly steadily.
I don't think you are - I think you agree with me in that to have success this year we have to ride our hopes on Timmy - I think we both agree that he is our key to success. This is the point I have been trying to get across all week but I think you are misunderstanding something b/c I am sure you agree with me yet you argue.
My point is: Timmy will win for us and to play others is a gamble - lets play Timmy and win!

9:40 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger neb said...


you say
"when Thomas has an off-night, the offense hasn't exactly rallied around him to help him out"

why atomatically fault thomas on any of these "off" nights? perhaps the team in front of him is giving up to many glittering chances and putting timmy in a bad situation because they are pressing for goals - epecially when they get down 2...

i would say that when the team shows up and plays that creates the type of offense and defense that allows the whole team to succeed.

9:58 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger Doobie said...

Buff - I'm saying that they should rest Thomas as they normally would. They shouldn't completely wear him down just because they don't have confidence in their backup goaltender. Sometimes you just have to suck it up and start the lesser goalie in order to preserve your starter over the long haul.

Neb - I think you're getting a bit touchy any time you think I slight Thomas. You guys aren't related, are you? LOL My point is actually echoing yours...the team as a whole hasn't been helping Thomas out on his off nights. Using those game log stats above, all of Thomas' losses on his bad nights (5+ goals against) have been by two goals or more, implying that the team wasn't putting up enough goals to help him out.

11:07 p.m., January 02, 2007  
Blogger neb said...

doob your not hearing me...cause you just called it an off night for thomas AGAIN....

perhaps its not the goalies fault when 6 or more goals get scored?

sometimes it could be just plain bad luck.

sometimes it could be complete team defensive break down.

just because a bunch of goals get scored it doesnt mean a goalie has played poorly, thats my main point.

7:45 a.m., January 03, 2007  
Blogger jimbuff said...

Doobie: No rest for Thomas please. He can handle the load and even him playing every night is better than whoever else we put in even for 1 game. Go with the hot hand - every game counts. Lets not just give away a game b/c we think Timmy needs a rest. He is fine and can handle it!

7:49 a.m., January 03, 2007  
Blogger Doobie said...

Neb, on the flip side, you can't give a pass to Thomas for his off-nights. And yes, they *are* off nights. Thomas has them, so does Brodeur and and so does Hasek.

Any time a team gives up six goals or more there's probably enough blame to go around, but you have to place at least some, if not most of the blame on the goalie and/or goalies. This is where the save percentage comes in.

If you look back at Thomas' game log for those 5+ goal games, you'll see that his save % was poor at best.

10/6 - 39 SOG, 27 SV, .794 SV%
11/6 - 39, 34, .872
12/2 - 30, 25, .833
12/4 - 39, 34, .872
12/16 - 35, 30, .857
12/26 (OT) - 42, 37, .881
1/1 - 35, 30, .857

Total: 254, 217, .854

Each one of these nights, Thomas faced an extraordinary amount of shots on goal...30+ in each one. But the goalie has to stop them, regardless. An .854 save percentage is unacceptable. Thomas has had 17 nights this year where he's faced 30+ shots, so it's not like it's an uncommon situation this season. I listed seven of his bad ones above, but in six of those 30+ SOG nights, he gave up two goals or less so it's not like he can't handle that many SOG on a regular basis.

So yes, Thomas *does* have off nights...it may not always be completely his fault, but they do happen.

9:11 a.m., January 03, 2007  
Blogger neb said...

here is the problem with blaming the goalie....and you like stats, so look this up. if the oppentent is allowed 40 shots and each one of them is a clean break in alone (penalty shot) how is the goalie doing if his save percentage is 87 percent?

a clean break in or a 3-1 or a 2-1 or power plays are team issues and reflect tremendously on save percentage and gaa... this is why these stats are meaningless.

true a goalie can give up a bad goal, but i think thomas has few of these when compared against the teams bad goals (from above mentioned scenarios of poor team play)

12:25 p.m., January 03, 2007  
Blogger neb said...

here is an example too.... the other night kariya comes burning down the wing and puts a bullet top corner on toivonen..... im sure many believe this is a soft goal... i say what the f is a top notch scorer doing walking down the wing untouched allowed to take a full wind up.... somebody has to be in his cute little jersey before he gets to the blue line. team goal against not on goalie. would it be nice for hannu to make this save... sure, expect it? is asking too much.

12:32 p.m., January 03, 2007  
Blogger Doobie said...

Neb, I love stats. And I hear where you're coming from...the problem's that they don't have any kind of "quality shots on goal" stat that would track those kind of offensive opportunities.

But calling the SV% meaningless is a bit harsh. It may not differentiate between soft shots on goal and those that might have come on breakaways or 5-3 power plays, but a lot of those things even out in the end.

Most importantly, the best goalies in the league are consistently on top in this category, so this stat definitely has credibility. Take a look at the current leaders. Since it's early in the season and a lot of people qualify right now, for the sake of this argument, only include goalies who've played 30+ games so far.

Going by that, the top five goalies in save percentage are Giguere, Brodeur, Hasek, DiPietro and Kiprusoff. Perhaps the most surprising is DiPietro who's having a pretty good season, but the other four are certainly among the league's best. Hasek and Brodeur are HOF locks. What's most shocking out of all of this is that Brodeur...from the old neutral zone trap master Devils...has actually faced the most shots in the league with a whopping 1032.

The bottom five with 30+ games are Niittymaki, Raycroft (hah!), Cam Ward, Lundquist, and Fleury. None of these guys are considered among the league's best.

And I'll go you one better. Niittymaki is the only one of this group that has a losing record. In fact, Cam Ward is ranked 8th in wins amongst the people with 30+ games despite his 2.83 GAA and .899 SV%. To me, that further tarnishes the "Wins" stat for goalies.

3:08 p.m., January 03, 2007  
Blogger neb said...

"but a lot of those things even out in the end."

they do not even out in the end they get compounded, if a team is prone to giving up bad penalties and odd man rushes a good goalie can be made to look bad and conversly a great stats goalie can be completely revealed when he leaves a team that does not give up quality opportunities.

do you think byron dafoe's game only worked in a bruins uniform when he was borderline all-star or do you think pat burns' trap made him look far better than he did before or after his days in boston?


look at byrons career was he that erratic a goalie or did the teams in front of him make a difference? according to you these things should all equal out... but they certainly didnt for byron dafoe.

perhaps the best goalies in the league continue to play for the most responsilble defensive teams?

3:28 p.m., January 04, 2007  
Blogger number4bobbyorr said...

neb, I agree. Bit I also think the two things: goaltender play vs. team play, aren't truly separable--by that I mean they are to a large extent dependent on one another.

This season we have seen the B's play poorly as a team when they lacked confidence in their goaltending. And on the other side, it would take a pretty special goalie to be hung out to dry night after night and not have his play suffer.

What I'd suggest is that many NHL goaltenders have the potential to play very well, but they usually need a solid defense in front of them for a period of time before they can shine, yet a quality defense usually needs confidence in their goaltending before they play their best.

I believe the art of the "spectacular save" plays an important role here. Being square to the shooter and always in position is what it takes to be a very good goaltender when you have a good D playing in front of you. But for that D to play at their best they have to have confidence in their goalie... so at some point in time it can really help if the goalie can pull off some of those "how did he get that?" kind of saves, and the irony is those kinds of saves usually come when a goalie is out of position!

I think, perhaps, Toivanen and Thomas began pretty much equally, but it was Thomas with his unusual style who gained his team's confidence by being out of position often enough to make the huge save.

Go ahead, call me nuts! ;-)

4:45 p.m., January 04, 2007  
Blogger Doobie said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6:16 p.m., January 04, 2007  
Blogger Doobie said...

Neb, RE: Dafoe...well, possibly, but what about Brodeur who's seen little change in his game since the end of the trap?

Sure, his GAA jumped in the 1st season after the lockout, but his SV% was actually an improvement over what he put up in the late 90s and early 00's.

I'm not saying that team play around a goalie has nothing to do with SV% and GAA...I'm just saying that they shouldn't be considered "meaningless" because of it.

6:34 p.m., January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thomas an elite goaltender...


May i add: hahahahahahaha

9:24 p.m., January 04, 2007  
Blogger Brooke said...

Can't wait to see what you have to say about TONIGHT'S GAME! :p

9:51 p.m., January 04, 2007  
Blogger TreeBob said...

Brooke: I imagine Jim will give a full debrief in the morning.

I look forward to your complete game breakdown as well Brooke.

11:08 p.m., January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Line of the year:

Thomas *is* an elite goaltender.

Not in the top 30 for both sav% and GAA. That's what i call an elite keeper.

6:56 a.m., January 05, 2007  

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