Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Goalie Battle

It’s starting to look like Damien Ketlo will be in camp ready to battle for the starters role which he had last season. With a 35-51-8-6 career record and a 3.79 GAA and .888 SV% I just don’t think those numbers cut it for a starting overage goalie.

I’m thinking that Matt Hewitt will get a legit chance to be the starter and continue to grow. I’m sure Pats new goalie coach Rob Muntain will help Matt become an even better goalie. His 12-14-0-1 record was pretty impressive for a goalie on a fairly young rebuilding team. With Matt in net (with a year under his belt) I’m going to say that I think the Pats have a real chance at winning every night.... I’m not saying we will win every night (if you thought that you are out of your mind) but he gives us a chance.

Well the back-up battle should be an interesting one. I don’t feel that there is a clear cut favourite.... yet. With a new regime in place I’m not totally sure what they are looking for in a back-up netminder. Adam Beukeboom seems to have the upper hand as he was with the club for periods of time last season and practiced with the team. Every time I’ve seen Tanner Burgardt I’ve been impressed with his play. With him playing AA in his hometown may have left his development a year behind, but then again he is only a 16 year old with lots of time left. The wildcards appear to be Teegan Sacher and Tyler Oswald (just found out he’s coming to Pats camp). I’ve seen both kids' numbers and what they have done and it wouldn’t surprise me if one of them made the team. I can't wait until tomorrow.

It will be nice to see prospect goalies Patrick Gora and Nathan Churchill (if he comes to camp) get some game action against the older players just to see what they are made of and to see what the Pats have for the future.

I’m hoping that over the next couple of years that goaltending will become one of the Pats stronger positions (well at least from what I’ve seen). I guess we’ll see at camp.

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