November 4 Goalie Ramblings

Nov 4th 2015, 10:02am EST

Just a few ramblings and notes from around the league:

We will start off in Calgary where they are a mess in net. Hiller is gone for at least another few days and Ramo has called up from the dead and started the last two games where he's given up 4 and 5 goals, respectively. He's not their answer in net. I see Hartley going back to Ortio next game and seeing if he can stabilize the situation in net but I'm sure they're calling the other teams checking who's available. I would stay away from the goalies in Calgary other than Ortio right now.

Another team struggling in net is the Leafs. Reimer played well last game but him and Bernier have been giving up a bad goal a game and I don't see them magically becoming better. They have Bibeau in the minors but he is still a couple years away from getting a serious chance and while management won't mind another year of sucking, I see them going after a goalie next off-season as Bernier and Reimer have proven unreliable.

I am definitely surprised with the goalie situation in Carolina. I had pegged Lack to steal the starting job by the halfway point but Ward has been playing really well and Lack hasn't exactly been lights out. Peters seems to really trust Ward and barring a collapse on his end, I see 55-60 starts from Ward this year. This is not at all what I expected from him this year.

Another interesting situation in net is what is happening in Buffalo. I think/hope Bylsma finally realize that Johnson is not a goalie you can rely on for a long period of time and that they will rely heavily on Ullmark until Lehner gets back. And while they paid a hefty price for Lehner, if Ullmark can prove himself consistent and reliable, then even Lehner will have to play pretty damn well upon his return.

Good for Mike Condon. Playing in the ECHL a couple of years ago, he's the starting goalie for the Habs while Price is injured and he's playing lights out. Price will be back soon and Condon will be back to playing once every 8-10 games but he is playing himself into another contract and maybe, just maybe, he can Talbot himself into another situation.

Speaking of Talbot, he has not exactly cemented his #1 role in Edmonton. They are giving him every chance but with every bad goal he lets in (and that 5 goal against the Flames on Saturday was really bad) and with every good game Nilsson plays, he is letting that doubt creep into the coachs head. While he is still the much better option, I would definitely have Nilsson as a hand cuff if you can.

Bobrovsky owners – it is going to be ok. He will be back to normal as he's a great goalie and that whole team just stunk for the first few games. He's too good to all of a sudden stink and he's got NO competition in net over there. Just be patient and don't sell him for cheap – you'll regret it.

Mike Smith better return to form fast or I can see Tippett giving Lindback a few extra starts. Last year the team was brutal and you can fault the defense for a lot of the bad games he had but this year he is just giving up some bad goals while Lindback has been pretty good in a small sample size. It would take a lot for Tippett to give up on Smith but in the end, he will do whatever he can to get that win and maybe sitting Smith might be the best thing if he keeps up his play. Just keep an eye out for Lindback as he is available in most fantasy leagues.

I willl end this with the situation in Detroit. I have no idea who will end up with more starts this year. If it were my choice, I think Mrazek is the better goalie of the two and their goalie of the future. But Howard is the contract goalie and they will give him every chance to reclaim the #1 job and get most of the starts, but if he falters, I could see Blashill quickly turn to Mrazek and ride him if it gets him some extra wins as he does not have the loyalty to Howard like Babcock did.

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Test for the ramblings
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