(KMOV) It’s safe to say that the St. Louis Blues are on quite the roll right now, they’ve won eight of their last 11 games. In those 11 games the Blues have allowed an average of 1.7 goals, which is an outstanding number. The two most important individuals who have helped that number become a reality are goaltenders Jaroslav Halak and Brian Elliot. In the last 11 games Halak has started four, going 2-0-2, and Elliott has started seven, going 6-1-0. This means Elliott is the better goalie, right? Not so fast.
First, I get it, hockey is very much a team sport and you can’t take away what the players in front of these goalies have done. Their defense, power play, penalty kill, and just about everything else has been superb. Certainly the hire of Ken Hitchcock has been great for this team too. But let’s just look at the men between the pipes and find out who is number one.
Elliott was drafted by the Ottawa Senators and really had only one good year; he had a record of 29-18, and helped the Senators to the playoffs but lost in the first round. In other years he and the team in front of him struggled and failed to make the playoffs. He was traded to the Colorado Avalanche and only won two games in 12 trys with a goals against average of 2.67. Now this year as the back up, that’s right I said back up, he has been one of the best goalies in the entire NHL. He ranks first in goals against average (1.43) and save percentage (.948). He’s tied for first in shutouts with four and he’s 8th in the league in wins with 13.
Halak was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens and made a quick impact. During the 2009-2010 season Halak went 26-13 with a 2.40 GAA, after starting as a back up.The Canadiens made the playoffs where the team picked Halak as their starting goalie and the team then pulled off two upsets in the first two round but lost in round three. The next year Halak was traded to the Blues and went 27-21 but remember the team in front of him wasn’t great.
So who is better? Who should be the Blues number one guy? On one hand, Elliott has been the talk of the NHL this season and is playing like a true number one. On the other hand, Halak has history on his side, has proved he can beat the best teams and since November 5. Halak has only lost in regulation one time out of eight.
The answer is both. You can’t go wrong. The Blues have one of the best goal tending duos in all of the NHL. You put either one of these guys in the net and have a team in front of them playing as consistent as the Blues have been; and you have a goal-tending duo that will help smash opponents into and during the playoffs.