With the first quarter of the 2013-14 season complete, NHL.com looks at some of its biggest storylines and award contenders.
There is no question the goaltending position has evolved in the past couple of decades, and the statistics back up the idea that the standards in net have risen to never-before-seen levels.
Hockey-reference.com tracks the NHL's average save percentage back to 1983-84, and the collective best in a full season was .914 in 2011-12. That mark topped the previous high of .913, established the prior season.
Through games Wednesday, the League average save percentage was .915. The collective goals-against average has been stagnant the past couple of seasons, but teams are getting slightly more shots on goal and the goalies are stopping them.
As recently as 2002-03, the Vezina Trophy winner, Martin Brodeur, had a save percentage of .914. That would place a goaltender 23rd on the qualified leaders list in 2013-14.
There are some new names, not to mention a couple of surprising ones, among the top contenders for the Vezina through the first quarter of the 2013-14 season.