Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Even-Strength Save Percentage

If anyone is looking for situational save percentage data, it can be found at or at Timeonice. The data goes back to 1998-99.

I've compiled the top 20 goalies with a minimum of 4000 even strength shots against. The league average over this span is .917.

Even-Strength Save Percentage Leaders since 1998-99:

RankGoalieEV SASV%
1.Dominik Hasek7,352.931
2.Roman Cechmanek4,091.931
3.Tim Thomas5,175.929
4.Patrick Roy6,164.929
5.Roberto Luongo12,083.929
6.J.S. Giguere9,377.926
7.Tomas Vokoun11,333.926
8.Kari Lehtonen4,777.925
9.Henrik Lundqvist5,397.925
10.Manny Fernandez6,724.923
11.Sean Burke7,399.923
12.Miikka Kiprusoff7,712.923
13.Evgeni Nabokov9,576.923
14.Ilja Bryzgalov4,068.923
15.Cristobal Huet4,570.923
16.David Aebischer4,387.923
17.Guy Hebert4,104.922
18.Marty Turco8,298.922
19.Martin Brodeur14,140.921
20.Martin Biron9,184.921


Dominik Hasek's even-strength save percentage in 1998-99 was .946. That is simply fantastic, and was at least .005 clear of every other season in this period.

Tim Thomas' Vezina Trophy season was no fluke, he is a very good goalie.

Kari Lehtonen is still the most underrated goalie in the NHL. Atlanta looks like an improved team heading into next season, so he should be primed for a good season. With some better support that will help turn that terrific save percentage into more noticeable things like wins and shutouts, I think Lehtonen is capable of challenging for a Vezina Trophy.

If Miikka Kiprusoff continues his decline, he'll be falling right off this chart by the end of next season. Oh how the mighty have fallen.

Sean Burke and Guy Hebert were both underrated goalies.

Roman Cechmanek shows the perils of relying on your eyes to judge goaltending, or basing your impressions of a guy on a couple of playoff series. There are thousands of hockey fans who will tell you that he was a brutal goalie. Yet somehow over 4000 even strength shots he managed to stop pucks better than almost everyone else. Must have been one fantastic streak of luck if he wasn't that good.

More evidence of Martin Brodeur's upside-down career curve:
Brodeur, 1998-2004: .918 EV SV%, .916 league average
Brodeur, 2006-2009: .926 EV SV%, .918 league average


The Puck Stops Here said...

When baseball players seemed to revitalize their careers well into their 30 (Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Mark McGwire etc) it seems steroids was the reason for it.

How irresponsible is it to wonder if Martin Brodeur has the same secret?

Lawrence said...

I agree with you about Lehtonen for the most part. I am a big fan of his and watched his development for many years. I think the stumbling block with him is injuries - which is no indication of his talent, but headlines with his name are often for just that. I think Vokoun may have Lehtonen beat or at least equaled.

Bruce said...

When baseball players seemed to revitalize their careers well into their 30 (Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Mark McGwire etc) it seems steroids was the reason for it.

Season ... Age ... GP ... Wins
1995-96 ... 23 ... 77 ... 34
1996-97 ... 24 ... 67 ... 37
1997-98 ... 25 ... 70 ... 43
1998-99 ... 26 ... 70 ... 39
1999-2000 . 27 ... 72 ... 43
2000-01 ... 28 ... 72 ... 42
2001-02 ... 29 ... 73 ... 38
2002-03 ... 30 ... 73 ... 41
2003-04 ... 31 ... 75 ... 38
2004-05 ... 32 ... lockout
2005-06 ... 33 ... 73 ... 43
2006-07 ... 34 ... 78 ... 48
2007-08 ... 35 ... 77 ... 44

Exactly when in his 30s did Marty Brodeur "revitalize his career"?

How irresponsible is it to wonder if Martin Brodeur has the same secret?

Very irresponsible bordering on stupid.

Vic Ferrari said...


I don't think that's irresponsible at all. I'm not sure what they would give a goaltender, but there are PIDs even for badminton players, I would imagine.

The ephredine use in the NHL has been well documented. It's a good thing that today's player is in such good physical condition, otherwise there would be several hear attacks a year, methinks. On the steroid and HGH side of things ... I shudder to think.

Hockey is in the same situation as baseball 15 years ago wrt PIDs. 99% of fans think that it doesn't apply to the sport. And the lid hasn't blown off yet.

Aside from the Nazarov quote in a Russian paper (Sports Ekspress I think) it hasn't been mentioned by players.

I would assume strictly summer regimens for most of the guys. With the Olympics coming up, players who played on teams that had long playoff runs, and are pencilled in on Olympic rosters ... it's going to be tight for them, timewise.

They might have to stay clean for this summer. (I wouldn't recommend taking anyone who matches those criterion in your fantasy league, just to err on the side of caution).

Let's just hope that nobody gets caught. Hopefully the countries do their own prescreening well in advance, and cut guys from the roster who might catch a positive test result.

Vic Ferrari said...

D'Oh. should read PEDs.

The Contrarian Goaltender said...

I don't doubt for a second that there is PED usage in pro hockey, so I guess in one sense it is probably better to be cautious then be fooled like all of baseball was for so many years, but it seems to be a bit of a stretch to me to insinuate that about a guy who fits Brodeur's profile. He's not really a workout warrior, he has a long history of past performance including some very good performance, and he improved in his mid-30s but he's still far from redefining the curve like McGwire or Bonds. If Brodeur continues to play at a similar level into his 40s then maybe I would start to wonder, but I really see anything there to get suspicious about.

Sunny Mehta said...

Not to mention, regardless of what rumors are being whispered about league-wide happenings, in order for one to indict Brodeur of "cheating", one would need to not only prove that he was taking PED's, but also show evidence of PED's actually making a difference (i.e. - offering a significant competitive advantage to a goaltender), and then show evidence that the other goalies besides Brodeur are NOT taking them.

Bruce said...

Vic: I agree it would be irresponsible to not be concerned about the issue as a whole. What I have a problem with is naming a name without any apparent support other than statistics which have marginally improved -- from "great" to "slightly greater" -- in the years since the lockout.

As CG says, this isn't exactly Bondsian, where Barry had four of the greatest years in the history of baseball at ages 37-40. (A .609 OBP? That's what I call enhanced performance) As cited above, Brodeur has just kept on doing what he does, 70+ GP, 40+ Wins. He's more like Albert Pujols than Bonds -- big-but-not-impossible numbers across a very broad spectrum, year after year. Pujols is one of the few modern sluggers who to this point has not been tied to steroids/HGH, other than the odd vicious gossip based on "he can't possibly be this good naturally".

Which is exactly what ticked me off about TPSH's comment up top, despite the attempt at cautious wording.

Statman said...

"Exactly when in his 30s did Marty Brodeur "revitalize his career"? "

As stated:
More evidence of Martin Brodeur's upside-down career curve:
Brodeur, 1998-2004: .918 EV SV%, .916 league average
Brodeur, 2006-2009: .926 EV SV%, .918 league average

Seriously, a .918 EV SV% when league avg is .916 -- that's "great"?

Bruce said...

Seriously, a .918 EV SV% when league avg is .916 -- that's "great"?

Sorry, Statman, I'm not a devotee of the Church of Save Percentology; that's not the only way to measure a goalie. Sure it's important -- and Brodeur has always been above-average-to-excellent by that metric -- but it's not the whole ball of wax. He's also excellent in shot prevention, and unparalleled in volume of work. Thus my statement about "big-but-not-impossible numbers across a very broad spectrum, year after year".

Statman said...

Alrighty, we've been through this before... difficult to see how maybe preventing 1 shot/60", & playing 70 games per yr behind one of the strongest defensive teams (that allows few PP's compared to league avg) is that impressive... I think there are a lot of goalies who could play 70+ games every year, but they are playing for weaker teams than NJ & so if they had a .918 (vs. .916 league avg) they would be allowing more goals (since facing more shots, espec. on the PP), leading to the coach being pressured to 'change up the goalies'... I guess it's easier to be perceived as 'great' when posting a .918 (vs. league avg .916) when playing behind a very strong team.

Ah, but anyway.

Let's see if Clemmenson produces numbers anywhere near what he did with NJ last yr.

Statman said...

To examine team-effects on wins, GAA, & shutouts (basic counting stats), a mathematical model could be built thereby inserting a Brodeur-like goalie into the lineup of a mediocre (or worse) team (one that scores less, allows more shots & PP's)... run many simulations, average them out... a Brodeur-like goalie would probably end up with 25-30 wins per yr, a higher GAA, much fewer SO's... but he'd still be the same goalie.

Vic could probably do this fairly quickly.

Lawrence said...

An interesting note for you on some research I did re: Miikka and his Calgary years including until Dec 6/09.

With Keenan: 2899/3174 ev =.913%
W/O Keenan: 4022/4289 ev =.938%

Over four seasons without Keenan he was simply the best ev sv% goalie in the NHL, in fact he averaged better than either Luongo's or Brodeur's single season best. (Luo .937%, MB .933)

Miikka is again 'leading' the NHL with a .941 as of Dec. 8th.

So his career ev sv% actually is now:

7669/8294 = .925% or good for 8th on the list and rising. For a guy his age, he has had a relatively short career - basically 6 seasons. as he only saw 831 ev shots in three years in SJ., which those numbers really bring down his career totals.

Anyway, not expecting a response to this...I actually just wanted to store the data somewhere and was referencing this list.

Lawrence said...

Oh yeah, those SJ numbers were 748/831 for .900 ev sv%

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