What is World Class Goaltending?

carey-priceIn September, we had a chance to watch the best goalies in the world compete in the World Cup of Hockey. So what makes a world class goaltender and what is the difference between the best goaltender in the world and the other great puck stoppers? We took the WCH goalies career NHL statistics and created the average WCH goalie. Goalie stats and basic statistics included Age, Height, Weight, Games Played, Goals Against Average, Save Percentage, Shutouts as well as Minutes Played. Team North America goalies were omitted because of their age and lack of experience, as well as KHL goalie Mikko Koskenin, as their inclusion would skew the numbers.

The Average WCH Goalie:

The average WCH goalie is very much what you would expect. Goalies generally hit their prime in their late twenties and are above 6 feet tall.

They are stronger than the past generation of goalies as evidenced by the average weight of 202 and they all catch with their left hand.

The average goalie has played the equivalent starting minutes of five NHL seasons and has a solid career GAA of 2.46 as well as a strong .917 save percentage.

TeamWorld Cup Goalie
NameAverage WHC Goalie
Age28.5
Height6'1.8”
Weight202
ShootsL
LeagueNHL
GP276
SA7,748
GA403
GAA2.46
SV%0.917
SO20.4
Min15,825

Carey Price, Canada:

Carey Price is currently regarded as the best goaltender in the world. For the sake of comparison, we put his statistics side by side to the average World Cup of Hockey goaltender.

Almost all the categories are comparable to the average WHC goaltender except for experience. Carey Price has played 201 more games, logged 10,521 more minutes, has allowed 662 more goals and made 5,516 more saves than the average WHC goalie.

Here are the side by side comparisons.

TeamWorld Cup GoalieCanada
NameAverage WCH GoalieCarey Price
Age28.529
Height6'1.8”6'3"
Weight202216
ShootsLL
LeagueNHLNHL
GP276447
SA774813264
GA4031065
GAA2.462.43
SV%0.9179.2
SO20.436
Min1582526346

Summary:

To be a world class goaltender it takes time as evidenced by the group’s experience. That is not to say there can’t be aberrations, but in general, games played plays a major role in getting to the top.

Carey Price’s experience supports the commonly held theory that the best way for a goaltender to develop in to play a lot.

Here are the results that the World Cup of Goalies had at this years tournament.

TeamNameGPGAASV %
CanadaCorey Crawford11.000.950
CanadaBraden Holtbydnpdnpdnp
CanadaCarey Price51.400.957
-------------------------
Czech RepublicPetr Mrazek22.980.925
Czech RepublicMichal Neuvirth16.000.880
Czech RepublicOndrej Pavelecdnpdnpdnp
-------------------------
EuropeThomas Greissdnpdnpdnp
EuropePhilipp Grubauerdnpdnpdnp
EuropeJaroslav Halak62.150.941
-------------------------
USABen Bishop16.000.800
USAJonathan Quick23.560.863
USACory Schneider10.001.000
-------------------------
FinlandMikko Koskinendnpdnpdnp
FinlandTuukka Rask22.020.920
FinlandPekka Rinne14.010.907
-------------------------
RussiaSergei Bobrovski42.530.930
RussiaSemyon Varlamovdnpdnpdnp
RussiaAndrei Vasilevskiydnpdnpdnp
-------------------------
SwedenJhonas Enrothdnpdnpdnp
SwedenHenrik Lundqvist32.250.940
SwedenJacob Markstrom11.000.964