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Examining the Anaheim Ducks goaltenders

by Evan Grossman / NHL.com

 
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Who's No. 1?

The Ducks may be all set in just about every area, even with their two stars mulling retirement, but they may not be as stable anywhere else as in goal. Jean-Sebastien Giguere could have gone anywhere in the NHL this summer as a free agent, but he chose to remain in Anaheim, keeping one of the best big-game goaltenders in the fold.

Giguere who was named playoff MVP in a losing effort in 2003, was brilliant in last year’s tournament and helped to deliver Anaheim’s first-ever championship. Perhaps no other player is as synonymous with the Ducks as Giguere is right now.

Backup plan

While "Giggy" goes into this season as the undisputed No. 1 man between the pipes, that was not the case a year ago. Any time backup Ilya Bryzgalov has been given a chance to spell Giguere, he’s responded well. When Giguere was dealing with his son’s medical condition during the playoffs, it was Bryzgalov who steadied the ship, going 3-1 in five games played with a 2.25 GAA. In the 2006 playoffs, Bryzgalov went 6-4 with a 1.46 GAA, numbers that almost caused a goalie controversy at the start of last season. While many teams around the League would love to have him on their team, Bryzgalov remains a Duck, and an important one at that.

He and Giguere have a good relationship, and Anaheim is confident in goal with the two, on the nights that one of them isn’t at their best. There may not be a better tandem in the NHL, which is always a situation that attracts trade rumors. If the Ducks opt to go in that direction, Bryzgalov would be an attractive carrot to dangle.

In the Wings

Gerald Coleman -- Appeared in 14 AHL games last season. … Posted a 6-6-0 record with a 2.69 GAA and .907 save percentage. … Played in 17 games with the Johnstown Chiefs of the ECHL, with a 3.41 GAA and .902 save percentage.

Jonas Hiller -- Played in 44 games with Davos of the Swiss-A league last season, where the 25-year-old went 28-16 with a 2.60 GAA. … Should the Ducks need to reach for a No. 3 at some point this season, all signs point to Hiller being the man.

Jean-Philippe Levasseur -- Anaheim’s seventh-round pick in the 2005 draft spent the last four seasons in the QMJHL. The 20-year old played in 58 regular-season games for the Rouyn-Noranda, going 31-21 with a 3.50 GAA and .889 save-percentage.

Giguere
J.S. Giguere on the Ducks after re-signing for four more years earlier this summer:

"Every single player in this league wants to play for this organization right now. It's an amazing place to live. Ownership is great. It just doesn't get any better in the NHL."
FAST FACTS

1. If you thought Jean-Sebastien

Giguere
Giguere was sharp in the playoffs, maybe that’s because he was fresher than most goalies in the tournament. During the regular season, Giggy played 3,244:38, which was less time between the pipes than 17 other goalies. He also played over 20 games less during the year than 78-game man Martin Brodeur.

2. With a 2.26 GAA, Giguere had the second-lowest goals-against in his NHL career, a number he bested only once with a 2.13 GAA in 53 games in 2001-02 with the Ducks.

3. Only two goalies were taken ahead of

Bryzgalov
Bryzgalov in the 2000 Entry Draft, and currently only the Islanders’ Rick DiPietro, with 205 games played, has seen more action than he has. The other goalie was Brent Krahn, taken ninth overall by Calgary, and he has yet to play an NHL game.


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