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Examining the Phoenix Coyotes goaltenders

by Evan Grossman / NHL.com

 
Complete Coyotes Analysis:
Intro | Goalies | Defense | Forwards
Feature | Numbers | Sked | Roster

Who's No. 1?

The Coyotes are bringing six goalies to training camp this month, and in truth, any one of those six men can come out of camp as the team’s No. 1 guy between the pipes. A blessing and a curse all at the same time, the Coyotes can look forward to a new face in nets, that for sure, but then again, just how good the new guy can be is anyone’s guess.

Basically, Phoenix has put out a call for whoever that person is to turn in the season of his life if they want to achieve their goal of qualifying for the playoffs. It will be a tall order, indeed.

Sight unseen and prior to the start of camp, the top job, you would think, will fall between veterans David Aebischer and/or Alex Auld, who were both signed this summer as free agents.

Aebischer, 29, is on a one-year contract after making 32 appearances last season with Montreal (13-12-3; 3.17 GAA; .900 save-percentage). Auld, 26, made 25 starts for Florida last season and won seven games with a 2.89 GAA and .902 save-percentage.

Neither of the top two has a great deal of experience with Auld logging 100 career starts over four seasons, while the senior Aebischer has 197 in his five years in the League.

Backup plan

Basically whoever loses the battle will find themselves backing up, but the Coyotes have plenty of options to select from as the goaltending competition shakes out. They’ll also have 24-year-old David LeNeveau and 27-year-old Mikael Tellqvist in camp fighting to make the squad, both of which could also wind up winning the No. 1 job. Both players were with Phoenix last season.

In the Wings

Josh Tordjman -- The 22-year-old Quebec native was invited to camp last year with the Coyotes and signed as an undrafted free agent. Last year, his first season of pro hockey, was played between the ECHL affiliate in Phoenix and the AHL San Antonio Rampage where he compiled a 15-18-2 record there with a 2.58 GAA and .920 save-percentage.

David McKee -- Undrafted Texas native saw action in seven games last season with AHL Portland, where he went a respectable 5-2-0 with a 2.85 GAA and .899 save-percentage.

David Aebischer
Coyotes general manager Don Maloney on the wide-open Phoenix goaltending competition:

"To me, it’s a wide open race and it doesn’t matter to me who grabs the ball and runs with it. Whoever does is going to play. And whoever doesn’t is going to be somewhere else."                  
FAST FACTS

1. The Coyotes and Bruins led the NHL with nine shorthanded goals scored against them last year.

Tellqvist
2. Phoenix goalies surrendered a total of 282 goals last season, which was more than all but two teams (Boston, 285; Philadelphia, 297).

3. Tellqvist and Auld are the only veteran goalies in camp to record a shutout last season in the NHL. Tellqvist, who started 26 games for Phoenix, recorded a pair, while Auld, Florida’s backup, recorded one.


NHL.com's 2007-08 Coyotes Season Preview Package:
Intro | Goalies | Defense | Forwards | Feature | Numbers | Sked | Roster
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