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Niemi-Turco By the Numbers

Monday, 08.02.2010 / 2:40 PM / NHL Insider

By John Kreiser - NHL.com Columnist

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Niemi-Turco By the Numbers
Marty Turco is now the man in Chicago, but how do his numbers stack up against the man he'll be replacing in Antti Niemi? NHL.com takes a look.
The Chicago Blackhawks have opted to let Stanley Cup-winning goaltender Antti Niemi leave by walking away from an arbitrator's decision that awarded him a salary of $2.75 million for 2010-11. Instead, they've signed veteran Marty Turco, who turns 35 this month and has spent his entire career with the Dallas Stars.

Here's a look at some of the key numbers for both players:

0 -- Trips to the Stanley Cup Final for Turco. The closest he came with the Stars was in 2008, when Dallas lost the Western Conference Finals to Detroit in six games.

1 -- Games won by Dallas last season on the 15 occasions when Turco allowed four or more goals. Niemi allowed four or more goals eight times, but the Blackhawks were 5-3 in those games.

2
-- Seasons since play resumed after the work stoppage in 2005 that Turco has had a save percentage of less than .900. He had .898 percentages in 2005-06 and 2008-09; his .913 save percentage in 2009-10 was his best since 2003-04.

2 -- Career meetings between the two goaltenders, both of which took place last season. Turco and the Stars won 5-4 on Dec. 29, a game in which Niemi lost despite stopping 13 of 14 shots in relief of Cristobal Huet. Niemi and the Hawks beat Turco and the Stars 4-3 in a shootout on Feb. 9.

2.31 -- Turco's career goals-against average, the second-best among active goaltenders who've played 250 or more games. However, he posted a GAA of 2.81 in 2008-09 and improved only slightly to 2.72 last season. Niemi's career mark is 2.32, but in only 42 games.
3 -- Seasons in which Turco posted a goals-against average of less than 2.00. He had a GAA of 1.90 in 2000-01 (26 appearances), 1.72 in 2002-03 (55 appearances) and 1.98 in 2003-04 (73 appearances).

6 -- Consecutive seasons in which Turco won 30 or more games. He was a 30-game winner in every season from 2002-03 through 2008-09, with a high of 41 wins in 2005-06.

7 -- Shutouts by Niemi as a rookie for the Hawks last season, matching Turco's total for the past two seasons combined. The last time Turco had seven or more shutouts was 2003-04, when he had nine.

12 -- Games played by Niemi on Sundays in 2009-10, twice as many as any other day of the week. He went 7-3-2 in those games. Turco played on five Sundays, going 0-3-2 -- he'd better improve this season, because the Hawks have 15 games on Sunday.

14 -- Road victories by Niemi in his 21 starts away from the United Center last season. Niemi was 14-3-2 with a 1.91 GAA away from home; Turco was 8-12-5 in 25 decisions on the road with a 3.04 GAA.

16 -- Career playoff victories by Niemi, who matched the NHL single-season record for wins by a goaltender while leading the Hawks to the Stanley Cup last spring. His 16 victories in 22 games as a rookie are only five short of Turco's career total of 21 -- in 47 games.

28 -- Career shootout victories by Turco, the fourth-highest total in the five seasons since the NHL adopted the breakaway competition to settle games tied after overtime. Turco is 28-22 in shootouts, but was just 4-8 in 2009-10.

.812 -- Niemi's save percentage in shootouts last season, the best of any goaltender who took part in five or more. Niemi had a 6-2 record -- including a 3-0 mark at the United Center, where he did not give up a goal on the 10 attempts he faced. One of those shootout wins was a 4-3 decision over Turco and the Stars on Feb. 9.

.926 -- Turco's save percentage at even strength last season, well ahead of Niemi's mark of .914. However, Niemi had a much better save percentage during power plays (.899 to .855) and allowed just one shorthanded goal (on 21 shots) to four for Turco (50 shots).


Quote of the Day

It's really exciting. I'm pretty sure that when I play my first game I'm going to be emotional. To be back on the ice playing a game, being in game situations, with all the routines and rituals I do before games and during the game, I feel like I'm going to be emotional. I'm going to be really happy.

— Montreal Canadiens forward Tim Bozon on playing for the first time since his life-threaning illness