Aug 1, 2013, 12:24 PM EST
Red Wings day on PHT continues…
The question we’re asking here will partly depend upon how you define elite. Some reserve that label for the top four or five players in the league; others use it a bit more freely.
What’s not debatable is this: In 230 career starts, Jimmy Howard‘s save percentage is .918. Among active goalies with more than 100 games played, only four have a higher save percentage than that — Roberto Luongo (.919), Pekka Rinne (.920), Henrik Lundqvist (.920), and Tuukka Rask (.927).
By that measure, it’s hard to call Howard anything but elite. Except we all know a player’s reputation is based largely on what he does in the playoffs.
In 42 career postseason starts, Howard also has a .918 save percentage. However, the Red Wings’ inability to advance past the second round while he’s been their number one has kept the 29-year-old somewhat under the radar from a league perspective.
Howard was brilliant for most of the 2013 playoffs; in fact, he was arguably the biggest reason the Wings were able to take a 3-1 series lead on the eventual champion Blackhawks.
“He’s always had confidence, but there’s something different about it now,” said Wings general manager Ken Holland during the Chicago series, per the New York Times. “He’s calmer, more assured. The play comes to him, and he knows what he needs to do.”
Of course, the Wings were unable to oust the ‘Hawks, eventually falling 2-1 in overtime of Game 7 — a game in which Howard was named second star.
Overall, though, it was a successful year for Howard and his club, which many expected to struggle in its first season without legendary defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom.
“You have to have a good goalie to go anywhere in the playoffs,” said Henrik Zetterberg.
“And we have it.”
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- Leafs captain Phaneuf suspended two games for boarding 34
- Rangers confirm Staal suffered concussion 7
- Winnipeg to get outdoor game; Phoenix wants one 32
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head 156
- Report: Dion Phaneuf will face hearing for hit on Kevan Miller 102
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ 132
- Lecavalier out 3-4 weeks with non-displaced fracture in back 8
- Islanders players hold closed-door meeting after ninth straight loss 15
- Penguins’ Neal has phone hearing for knee on Bruins’ Marchand 90
- Video: Penguins’ Orpik stretchered off ice; Bruins’ Thornton given match penalty (182)
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head (156)
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ (132)
- Pens put Orpik on IR (132)
- Orpik suffers from concussion, including memory loss (112)