Monday, February 2, 2009

The Case For Clemmensen?

1) A month or so ago when we first mentioned on other blogs whimsically that New Jersey goaltender Scott Clemmensen should get Vezina consideration we were met with laughs, derision and basically dismissed that that was a totally silly/absurd notion. However, a month later and Scott has in our opinion played well enough, and has the stats to back up that consideration.

2) His meteoric/amazing rise this season comes after not even being on the opening night roster. In fact playing goal in the Devil organization behind Marty Brodeur is not the place one would want to be if you wanted to get much playing time at the NHL level. In the previous 12 seasons Brodeur has played in excess of 70 games. With NHL vet Kevin Weekes set to again be Brodeurs back up, it didn't look like Clemmensen was going to be anything more than an AHL starter this season.

3) That changed when Brodeur went down this fall with an arm injury that required surgery and several months on the IR. With that Scott was summoned up from Lowell in the AHL, ostensibly to back up Kevin Weekes or until another NHL calibre goalie could be attained by GM Lamarello to bridge the injury period. Even we at FAUXRUMORS felt that the Brodeur injury was Jersey's death knell. However this has not been the case and Scott's performance to a large degree has been a reason. After starting Weekes in the first 4 games after the Brodeur injury, Clemmensen stole the starters role and quickly silenced the folks who were clamoring for Jersey to make a deal for a goalie.

4)So how does Clemmensen stack up against the other goalies? Most are touting Boston's Tim Thomas as their Vezina front runner.

  • As of today Thomas has played 32 games with a 22-5-5 record, a 2.11 GAA and a dazzling 933 save percentage. Definitely Vezina worthy stats for sure.

  • On the other hand Clemmensen has played 33 games with a 22-9-1 record, a 2.29 GAA and an impressive 920 save percentage.

  • Also, as important in our opinion Clemmensen does NOT have Dennis Wideman and the current Norris favourite, Zdeno Chara in front of him. Additionally, Thomas team mate Manny Fernandez prior to getting injured had similarly impressive stats (he is 14-3, 2.07, .928)

5) We maintain that IF Brodeur had Clemmensen's stats he would be among the Vezina candidates everyone would be discussing right now. Because the 31 year old Des Moines, IA native does not have the past credentials, and most expect Brodeur to regain his starters role when he is recovered, few are giving Clemmensen the respect/due he has earned this season. Minimally he is the Tyler Conklin of this season. A journeyman American goalie who rises to help his team (last year Conklin with Pittsburgh) We at FAUXRUMORS are not going to overlook Scott. If he maintains this level of play he deserves consideration regardless of his past/future!


Antzmarching said...

Faux, I hate agreeing with you too much of the time, but you have made a convincing case here... If Marty had these stats he be the odds on favorite for the trophy... The Devlis are one of the top teams in the league, despite the loss of their HOF netminder... Scotty is "THE" reason, not "A" reason... And you are correct again - Johnny Oduya is definitely NOT Zdeno Chara... Oduya is underrated, though...

I'm on board Faux... CLEMMENSEN FOR VEZINA!!!

chompsey said...

Man i like scotty and all but i would feel a lot better about the playoffs if marty was in net. Nice job though.

David Hutchison said...

You make a very good case. On the other hand this could equally be a case that any goalie cold succeed in NJ. Perhaps Brodeur is overrated. I don't think so, but there are those who do.

I've linked to this post at the blog for goalies

The Puck Stops Here said...

To be clear, you are not saying Clemmensen is the Vezina favorite at this point are you?

If you are saying he deserves consideration for a spot further down your ballot, I would argee. At this point I wouldn't think he deserves to be one of the three Vezina nominees, but he should be in the conversation with the top goalies this year who are outside the top three.


1) Chompsey: We can see with Marty's experience that you'd feel that way, but you also have to feel more comfortable than this time last year that the Devils have a legit back up if Brodeur falters/gets hurt(again)
2)Hutch: Your point about Jersey goalies has been on-going. Some said it was their defense with Scott Stevens/Jacques Lemaire's trap system. Lemaire and Stevens are gone and the devils continued to play well. So it must be Brodeur, right.
3) Enter Clemmensen. The Devils continue to win, so the Asterisk some might put next to Brodeur's records may have merit on some levels
4) Puck: yes, basically that is correct, but we wanted to also mention in this exercise how a players reputation plays some role in deciding who gets chosen for an award
5) Antz: Yes, Johnny Oduya and the rest of the Devils rear guard are underrated, as is Parise who is having an MVP type season himself!

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