Martin Brodeur didn't play much in October 2011 due to injury. Still, the review must begin at the beginning. (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)
The New Jersey Devils decided to re-sign Martin Brodeur to a two-year deal worth $9 million. This is coming off a mostly successful playoff run and a pretty good post-All-Star-break run during the regular season. However, Brodeur's numbers were terrible before the All-Star break. He missed most of October after sustaining a right shoulder injury after landing on it after a diving save against Los Angeles. Since then, Brodeur needed quite a bit of time to get to decent numbers. Whether he'll have another slow start will be of interest as Brodeur starts playing on his new deal in this coming October.
Until then, all we can do is look at what he's done. As in prior summers, I believe there is value at looking at the goals Brodeur has allowed and making some conclusions. Giving up 136 goals in 59 games with an overall save percentage of 90.8% does look poor. How did the goals against come? Where was Brodeur most often beaten? How many of the goals allowed were soft ones, goals Brodeur really should have stopped? How many came from shots that some may call scoring chances? I believe by reviewing each goal allowed by Brodeur (yes, all 188 goals: 136 in the season, 52 in the playoffs), we can find some answers.
|Oct. 2011 - Martin Brodeur||2
This month - and this post - will be one of the shortest of the entire review. Brodeur only made two appearances in October and he left during in the second game due to injury. He did not return to action until November 2. Still, let's set our viewing to wide, take a closer look at what the review will have, what Brodeur allowed in October, and talk about it after the jump.
About the Review
I will be looking at each goal allowed by Martin Brodeur in the 2011-12 campaign. I'm breaking it up month by month and I will include the playoffs.
The main thing I'm looking for in this review are "soft goals," those goals against that should have been stopped by the goaltender. Here's how I am defining a soft goal. The goalie must have seen the shot coming; the shot was not deflected or change otherwise in motion; the goalie was in position to actually make the stop; and/or the goaltender made an uncharacteristic mistake that led to the goal. If the goal allowed qualifies, then I deemed the goal as "soft." In fact, the very last bit alone can make the difference in what is and is not a soft goal (e.g. first goal against by Hedberg).
Like last summer's review, I will also highlight players under Skater Error. Did a Devils skater do something seriously wrong (e.g. a turnover, missed coverage, etc.) on the play that led to the goal? If so, their name (or names) end up on the chart. I could be picky and call someone(s) out for every goal, but I'm only highlighting who's actions or lack thereof contributed to the goal against. There will be goals where multiple skaters screw up, so you may see more than one name. There will also be goals where a breakdown happens and I can't pin it on one player. I'm tracking this to see if any players were more directly at fault than others, assuming that means anything. As with the goals allowed themselves, feel free to discuss this too.
Also, I'm adding something to the GA (goal allowed) Description: SC. If a shot was fired in between the dots and below towards the crease, then that's considered a scoring chance. While I don't have scoring chance information over the whole game or the whole Devils season, I can will designate if the goal scored would count as a scoring chance with those two letters. At the end of the project, I'd like to see how many goals allowed were from chances, how many weren't from chances, and how many from each group were soft. Maybe there will be something of value out of that, maybe there won't be, but I'll find out anyway.
Lastly, I have provided links to the video I looked at for each goal from NHL.com. These links will auto-play the video, so be forewarned.
The 4 Goals Allowed by Martin Brodeur in October 2011: A Chart
|Date||GA#||Where Beaten?||GA Description||Soft Goal?||Video Link||Skater Error|
|10/8||1||Low, past right pad||Van Reimsdyk is chased; Fayne leaves the front; pass gets to Giroux for a one-timer. SC.||No||Link||Fayne|
|10/8||2||Off the glove||Hartnell to Read in the high slot, Read's shot goes off Brodeur's glove and in.||Yes||Link|
|10/8||3||Low, past left arm||Meszaros long shot is stopped, Simmonds gets two rebounds at crease. PPGA. SC.||No||Link||Volchenkov|
|10/13||4||Low, past left arm||Williams found Gagne all alone in front; went backhand to get around sliding Brodeur. SC.||No||Link|
Location of Goals Allowed
All locations are relative to Brodeur himself, not necessarily where the puck goes into the net. It's pretty simplistic, but it'll do for general information.
Brodeur only had one soft goal allowed, the second of the Philly game against Matt Read (GA #2). The goalie got a piece of it, but not enough of it, and it dropped in. I believe that if you had a piece, then you could have had more than that. Still, the rest really can't be pinned on the goalie. A free shot in the slot by Giroux (GA #1) spelled disaster for a lot of goalies, Mark Fayne dropping down low really hurt because it created the lane for the pass so I tagged him with an error on the play. GA #3 and GA #4 were at close range on plays where Brodeur was in a bad spot. I almost tabbed Adam Larsson with an error on GA #4 since it was his side where Gagne scored (again, always a bad idea). However, after watching the play, this was a team fault since the offensive rush failed by the Devils led to a three-on-two and Larsson was in a bad position because of how it developed. I can see people disagreeing with that; but either way, Brodeur was hung out to dry on that play.
With only four goals allowed in 80 minutes of play, there's not a whole lot to discuss. Three of the four came on scoring chances. Three of the four were from low shots. One soft goal out of four allowed isn't great, but it doesn't really tell us anything about Brodeur's play in October like a weak spot or a bad run of luck or whatever. I can say he wasn't a sieve, but that's not saying much. Don't worry, from here on out, there will be a lot more goals allowed to review - especially in next week's post.
Incidentally, this was the save where Brodeur hurt his shoulder. It was an impressive stop.
Hopefully after taking all this in, watching the video, and considering each goal, I want to know what you think. Would you agree that GA #2 was the only soft goal? Do you think other skaters should have been called out for making errors on these plays? Since this is a short review, I'd like to know what you think of the format as well before this series continues throughout the rest of the summer. As far as Johan Hedberg goes, his review will begin on Friday. Please leave your answers and other thoughts in the comments. Thank you for reading.