Thursday, February 14, 2008

Valentine's Day With My True Love

Valentine's Day... what a load of crap! Now that we've gotten that out of the way, let's take a moment to reflect on our true love, the Thrashers. In particular, I'd like to take a look at the goaltending situation. Boy we've all been through a lot with THAT relationship haven't we! But, like any true love, we have struggled through the hard times to get where we are. God bless Kari. There are those who say he is inconsistent; well, sometimes I guess. He's still young. Let's step in the way back machine and go through each goalie:
  1. The One Who Shall Not Be Named: Wow, our first goalie. And if memory serves, the first EVER Thrasher. Even before the expansion draft. What a colossal mistake. No more needs to be said.
  2. Norm "Double Cheeseburger" Maracle: The name says it all doesn't it? The best memory I have is when he shut out the Flyers 1-0. I think that was the last time we beat them wasn't it? In my opinion just as big a mistake, if not bigger, than #1.
  3. Scott Fankhouser: Faith in Fank! God I loved Fankhouser. I still think he never got the shot that he deserved. One of the few bright spots in the early years.
  4. Scott Langkow: Just another name in the long list of goalies. Not much talent here. I think he only played 10 games or so. Still, to me better than #1 or 2... not saying much!
  5. Rich Tabaracci: Finally, a real goalie I thought! Too bad he only played one game for us! We have a history of getting goalies at the end of their career.
  6. Trevor Kidd: Got him in the expansion draft, but then traded him away before he played a game. At the time, I thought to myself I'd rather have him than #1.
  7. Milan Hnilicka: Our best goalie to this point. Still love his name! When we had a hard time trying to sign him in the offseason, I thought we should dump him and go after Dafoe. We didn't, and still wound up with Dafoe in mid-season. I'll address that a little later.
  8. Frederic Cassivi: Everyone rooted for this guy. He was adequate. Played about as good as his talent would allow. I guess that's all you can ask of someone.
  9. Pasi Nurminen: Ah, good 'ole Pasi. The fan favorite. Too bad his knee injury ended his career. He flopped around a lot, but he was good and fun to watch!
  10. Byron Dafoe: As I said earlier, I wanted him so bad in the offseason. It didn't happen 'til mid-season. He missed half the year due to not having a team, and never recovered. In my opinion, the first true #1 goalie on our team. My gosh it didn't turn out that way. Injury after injury (remember when he slipped on the ice outside of the hotel!). Another goalie that was great for his previous teams, and sucked when he got here.
  11. Adam Berkhoel: Career minor leaguer forced into action due to injuries.
  12. Michael Garnett: Career minor leaguer forced into action due to injuries. Seeing a pattern here? He actually played above his head while he was here. Good for him.
  13. Mike Dunham: Son of a bitch.
  14. Steve Shields: See Byron Dafoe. See Rich Tabaracci. Stevie still has the BEST goalie mask of all time!
  15. Johan Hedberg: MOOOOOOOOOOSE!!! The best free agent signing in our history. What a teammate! The Anti-Norm Maracle.
  16. Ondrej Pavelec: Tons of potential here. Ondrej, Moose, and Kari. One will be the odd man out.
  17. Kari Lehtonen: Remember when he got called up at the end of the year and won the last 4 games! I think Kari has all the potential in the world. And we are starting to see the results.

Sorry for the long post. I just wanted everyone to see what we went through to get to Kari and Company. Many struggles. So, the next time Kari gives up a bad goal, remember how lucky we are to have him. This offseason is going to be very interesting from a goaltending point of view. Three goalies, two spots. Moose without a contract. Kari and Ondrej both very young and very good. I still say Kari is the guy, but you never know what will happen. One thing is for sure... after reading this list, it is safe to say this is a good problem to have.

For The Blueland Chronicle, I'm Big Shooter.

1 comment:

Tiffany said...

I love you, you sugar talker you! God, Hnlicka. Fun name fo sho. Remember the year we went thru 13 goalies? Good times.... except not really.