Of the 20 teams currently either in the playoffs or close to a spot, just five goalies -- four of them starters -- have won Stanley Cups. And only New Jersey's Martin Brodeur and Detroit's Chris Osgood have won multiple Cups.
While a goalie without playoff experience can have success, consider that four of the last seven Cup winners have had a starting goalie that already has won a title. And two of the three goalies that won their first Cup in that span -- Detroit's Dominik Hasek and Anaheim's Jean-Sebastien Giguere -- had been to the Stanley Cup Final earlier in their career.
The following is a breakdown of the five active goalies that previously have won the Cup:
Martin Brodeur, New Jersey: Brodeur is the gold standard when it comes to winning. He set the League's all-time record for wins last month, but recently has hit a cold patch, losing six-straight. While Brodeur has had plenty of success in the past, winning Cups in 1995, 2000 and 2003, it should also be noted that he has had his share of playoff troubles, and has an 11-19 record in overtime playoff games.
Cam Ward, Carolina: Ward, like the Hurricanes, has had an up-and-down season, but he and the team are currently riding a major upswing. He rode a rather memorable streak to a Cup victory and the Conn Smythe Trophy as a rookie with the Hurricanes in 2006. Ward has been Carolina's No. 1 goalie since then, but the Hurricanes haven't been back to the playoffs since winning the Cup.
Ward currently is playing the best he has in recent memory as Carolina has won seven- straight to move into sixth in the Eastern Conference, and Ward was named the League's Third Star for the week ending March 30.
Chris Osgood, Detroit: While Osgood and Ty Conklin have been used in tandem this season, it looks like the Wings will go into the playoffs with Osgood as their starter. It's a spot he's earned as a three-time NHL champion.
He has a career 2.13 goals-against average in the playoffs, but, prior to last season, Osgood had not backstopped a team past the first round since the 2000 Red Wings, going 12-20 in a five-season span.
Nikolai Khabibulin, Blackhawks: With the addition of Cristobal Huet this past summer, Khabibulin's future in Chicago was in doubt; instead, he's outplayed Huet and will go into the postseason as Chicago's starter.
Khabibulin helped the Lightning win the 2004 Stanley Cup, but hasn't been the playoffs since.
Jean-Sebastien Giguere, Ducks: Giguere took Anaheim to Game 7 of the 2003 Stanley Cup Final; he lost to New Jersey, but became just the fifth player from a losing team to win the Conn Smythe Trophy. In 2007, however, Giguere won 13 games and posted a 1.97 GAA and .922 save percentage as the Ducks beat Ottawa to win the Cup.
This season, however, Giguere is not a lock to start for the Ducks, as Jonas Hiller seems to have replaced him in the top spot. If Hiller gets the nod from Randy Carlyle, the coach will at least have the security of an experienced backup if that decision does not pan out.
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