I was reading the thread on Theodore's consistency over at Japer's Rink (BTW - pure coincidence on the names here, I had the name first... HE should really change it) While reading the thread and comments, I saw the below criteria that Hockey Analyst uses to identify both blown and stolen games.
Stolen Games: a game in which the team scored 2 or fewer goals, allowed 30 or more shots and won or a game in which the team scored 3 goals and allowed 35 or more shots and won.
Blown Games: a game in which the team scored 4 or more goals, allowed 25 or fewer shots but lost or a game in which the team scored 5 or more goals and allowed 26-30 shots, but lost.
I thought it would be of some interest to sort the last two seasons worth of games into these categories. Do I believe these categories to be gospel? No. Have Avalanche net-minders stolen or blown games that aren't highlighted by these categories and their qualifiers? Definitely. Am I out of rhetorical questions? Yes.
Jan 21 - LA - Budaj then Raycroft - Blown
Jan 8 - Chicago - Raycroft - Stolen
Dec 27 - Detroit - Budaj - Stolen
Dec 18 - Tampa - Raycroft - Stolen
Dec 15 - Detroit - Raycroft - Stolen
Nov 15 - Edomonton - Budaj - Stolen
Nov 12 - Vancouver - Budaj - Stolen
Oct 25 - Buffalo - Budaj - Stolen
Through the entire '08-'09 season, Budaj stole 4 games and Raycroft 3. Then, on January 21st, their combined goaltender powers allowed for one blown game, a 6-5 debacle against LA where Budaj was pulled to no avail. I was suprised to only see one blown game given the Q carousel, inconsistent net-minding and overall suckitude of the Avs during the second half of last season.
Jan 22 - Nashville - Andy - Stolen
Jan 16 - New Jersey - Andy - Stolen
Jan 11 - Calgary - Andy - Stolen
Jan 9 - Buffalo - Andy - Stolen
Nov 17 - Calgary - Andy - Stolen
Oct 24 - Detroit - Andy - Stolen
Oct 3 - Vancouver - Andy - Stolen
So, through 55 games Andy has stolen 7 games for us, and blown none. Budaj doesn't show in either category. This seems about right to me. interestingly though, 4 of the 7 stolen games occurred during our recent six game win streak. Also of interest, the '08-'09 season had the same number of stolen games through the same time frame. Though, this doesn't correlate exactly because of this year's compressed Olympic schedule.
It's also no wonder that Calgary believes we are only where we are because of our goaltending, magic anti-CORSI spells and four leaf clovers. Two of Andy's seven steals came against the fLames. I hope he steals the remaining two match ups as well because it would just rub their fan base the wrong way. (And who wants to rub a flames fan the right way? EWWWWW)
I'm also now of the opinion that Budaj should be playing more. He's a great backup, deserves to play and I'd like to see him on this team in the future. He played in front of a poorly coached, very injured and hugely demoralized team last year. Were he playing a bit more, I think the team would begin to build confidence in him again, and he could be utilized more often. This would allow for a rested Anderson to steal more games like we saw during our recent six game campaign. If BUDAJ WEER TRULLY TEH SUXXORRZ, maybe we would have seen more blown games from last season.
I was hoping that going through all of this would show clear differences between last season and this one, and thus far it hasn't. I do think that Andy will continue to steal games for us, and there might be some differences if I looked again at the end of the season. What has me very excited is the future, one where we might not need Andy to steal ten or more games to get into the playoffs. Maybe a future where he is stealing games in the Stanley Cup finals.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Nice article discussing stuff we've all been talking about lately. Also, Budaj was misspelled alot and it bugged me, so I fixed it. But then I promoted it to the front page so me and not3or4 can still be friends.