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#1 Hockeytown0001

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 01:09 PM

Personally, I'd like to see him start at least 5-10 games in Osgood's absence to give Howard a rest. Last night's game wasn't Howard's fault, but it looked fairly obvious to me that he looked a little gassed, and MacDonald played very well in relief.

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#2 Rivalred

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 01:12 PM

Personally, I'd like to see him start at least 5-10 games in Osgood's absence to give Howard a rest. Last night's game wasn't Howard's fault, but it looked fairly obvious to me that he looked a little gassed, and MacDonald played very well in relief.


Three games in four nights and the assault that the Nucks poured on? Yeah, he is tired.
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#3 Drake_Marcus

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 01:18 PM

To be honest I don't think Howard should have started last night. 3 games in 4 nights is too much for any goalie at any level of hockey. Starting Howie last night was a mistake.

MacDonald looked good in relief, though. I'd wait and see how Howard responds against Columbus on Friday. He's been better on the road this year anyway. Definitely start MacDonald against Columbus on Saturday.

Here's how I'd break it down:

Jan 14th at Columbus: Howard
Jan 15th vs Columbus: MacDonald
Jan 18th at Pittsburgh: Howard
Jan 20th at St. Louis: MacDonald (depends in part on how each goalie does in the games above)
Jan 22nd vs Chicago: Howard
Jan 26th vs New Jersey: Howard

After that we should have Datsyuk back and all will be right in the world. :thumbup:

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#4 Hockeytown0001

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 01:40 PM

To be honest I don't think Howard should have started last night. 3 games in 4 nights is too much for any goalie at any level of hockey. Starting Howie last night was a mistake.

MacDonald looked good in relief, though. I'd wait and see how Howard responds against Columbus on Friday. He's been better on the road this year anyway. Definitely start MacDonald against Columbus on Saturday.

Here's how I'd break it down:

Jan 14th at Columbus: Howard
Jan 15th vs Columbus: MacDonald
Jan 18th at Pittsburgh: Howard
Jan 20th at St. Louis: MacDonald (depends in part on how each goalie does in the games above)
Jan 22nd vs Chicago: Howard
Jan 26th vs New Jersey: Howard

After that we should have Datsyuk back and all will be right in the world. :thumbup:

Seriously-- it's miserable watching the Wings play and not seeing Datsyuk. Every Datsyuk shift is entertaining.


J-Mac can also start against the Sens on February 2.

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#5 nate94gt

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 03:58 PM

Jmac looked good last night.

#6 Carman

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 04:01 PM

Really depends on how he plays. If he's getting the job done then he needs to fill in what Osgood would have done.
If he's not doing the job we have to ride Jimmy and possible make a trade if the organization feels that Osgood won't be able to make a 100% recovery during the home stretch where we need to let Howard recharge.

#7 HankthaTank

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 04:03 PM

However many back to back games we have left and give or take a couple sprinkled throughout the 2 months Ozzie is out for. I have to say he filled in quite admirably last night.
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#8 Stolberg

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 04:38 PM

as few as possible



#9 gcom007

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 11:20 PM

Howard needs breaks for his head more than his body. As much as it'd be easy to pin some of this stuff on the physical toll of overplaying, I stand by the opinion that the mental toll is far more of an issue right now. He played this much and more last year and never flinched. He didn't flinch until the reality of being the starting goalie really set in come playoff time. It's carried into this season as well especially as the season's gone on. The guy has got the skills to be a starter, no doubt about it, but rushing him into it obviously hasn't done him any favors.

Look at the last few games and the outcomes for him. In Vancouver, he wasn't expecting to start and got surprised, and on top of that, with all of our injuries and the Canucks recent strong play, most were expecting us to lose. He was facing a different kind of pressure than usual and he responded exceedingly well. Might that not also be compared to last year when no one expected him to be the starter and he basically just fell into it when Osgood went down? He's just out there playing last year, just like he was out there playing Saturday night.

Compare that to last night and countless other games lately. He comes in clearly as the starter and struggles. He looks frazzled, he gets no bounces. Sure, last night and many other times he didn't get any help and the level of blatant softies is not at all equivalent to the goals against numbers, but does anyone honestly think that the Howard we saw Saturday night and the Howard we saw the majority of the regular season last year would give up 4 goals against of any nature in the first 15 minutes? No way.

And to make the point clear, compare Howard's time in net last night to Macdonald's. Macdonald wasn't given many new favors, but he went in with no pressure. You're already down 4-1 and you're just the Grand Rapids call up. This game isn't likely to add a loss to your record let alone is anyone going to hold it against you. He was just a kid out there playing hockey. It made a big difference, and let's be clear, Joey Macdonald may be a good kid, sure, but does anyone really believe that he's 1/10th the goalie Howard is? Of course not. Well, I hope not. I have one word for you if you do: Legace.

Jimmy looked like a different goalie in the playoffs. The calm, loose demeanor on his face showed more frustration and fear. He also played like a different goalie. This year, it's no different; he just looks more and more scared and frustrated out there as the season's gone on. Again, we know he's physically and technically capable of being a great goalie. He's been given time off to relax, rest and work with Bedard. But upon returning, he still allows 4 goals against early on in a game. He finished strong, but it was too little too late. Next game he plays great when he wasn't expecting to play at all. The following game, back to Jimmy having to be the starter again and suddenly it's 5 goals in 15 minutes.

And it's not that Jimmy Howard should have stopped those 4 goals last night, it's that he's more than capable of stopping 3-4 of those goals and he simply isn't these days. Again, this isn't a physical thing, nor is it a new thing. Just look at the last 2 months to see the pattern. I really believe that the only logical explanation is that Howard's mental game is a mess right now. As I've been saying since last year, I just think we put too much on him too early. The mental element of being a starting NHL goalie is not something that's learned overnight or in a rookie season. It takes time. He hasn't been given that time and I believe that to be the reason he's now faltering.

All that to say, I have plenty of faith in Jimmy Howard's ability to be a solid if not great NHL starting goalie. Unfortunately though, I have more than a few doubts about the Wings management being able to reverse what they've done and get him back on a developmental path that will allow him to have a career in this league as opposed to becoming yet another goalie living up to the cliche of "great rookie year followed by sophomore slump." Babcock and/or Holland seemed to be realizing the need to give him some space to relax, watch and work on his game lately, and I hope that despite Osgood going down, they try to keep up with it a bit. I'd rather lose some games with Macdonald to help Howard long-term rather than continue to burn him out early. It'd just be an absolute shame to if we drove him to the point of no return.

And if you don't believe it's possible, just look at the long list of young goalies who have 1-2 strong years before crumbling into mediocrity and oftentimes falling out of the league. Some struggle with injuries, some with consistency, some get burned out, some crumble under pressure while some just make no sense any way you look at it.

Just to name a few...

Brian Boucher, Roman Turek, Corey Hirsch, Blaine Lacher, Roman Cechmanek, Darren Pang (Calder finalist) and last but certainly not least, the king of the one season wonders, Jim Carey.

How's Steve Mason's (Calder winner) career going? How about Pascal Leclaire? Where's Martin Gerber playing now?

And how many other goalies didn't come out of the gates looking like stars only to eventually develop into solid NHL goalies?

Hell, Hasek was a backup for 3 seasons before he ever got a chance to be a starter. And he started in the NHL at 25 too. Who's to say whether Hasek could've done all that he did if he had to carry the starter weight early? Maybe he would've been fine, but maybe he would've crumbled under the pressure. Only one thing can be said for certain: sitting back and watching other successful, proven starters do it for a few years certainly didn't hurt him. Not one bit.
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#10 Booster313

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Posted 12 January 2011 - 02:14 PM

Howard needs breaks for his head more than his body. As much as it'd be easy to pin some of this stuff on the physical toll of overplaying, I stand by the opinion that the mental toll is far more of an issue right now. He played this much and more last year and never flinched. He didn't flinch until the reality of being the starting goalie really set in come playoff time. It's carried into this season as well especially as the season's gone on. The guy has got the skills to be a starter, no doubt about it, but rushing him into it obviously hasn't done him any favors.

Look at the last few games and the outcomes for him. In Vancouver, he wasn't expecting to start and got surprised, and on top of that, with all of our injuries and the Canucks recent strong play, most were expecting us to lose. He was facing a different kind of pressure than usual and he responded exceedingly well. Might that not also be compared to last year when no one expected him to be the starter and he basically just fell into it when Osgood went down? He's just out there playing last year, just like he was out there playing Saturday night.

Compare that to last night and countless other games lately. He comes in clearly as the starter and struggles. He looks frazzled, he gets no bounces. Sure, last night and many other times he didn't get any help and the level of blatant softies is not at all equivalent to the goals against numbers, but does anyone honestly think that the Howard we saw Saturday night and the Howard we saw the majority of the regular season last year would give up 4 goals against of any nature in the first 15 minutes? No way.

And to make the point clear, compare Howard's time in net last night to Macdonald's. Macdonald wasn't given many new favors, but he went in with no pressure. You're already down 4-1 and you're just the Grand Rapids call up. This game isn't likely to add a loss to your record let alone is anyone going to hold it against you. He was just a kid out there playing hockey. It made a big difference, and let's be clear, Joey Macdonald may be a good kid, sure, but does anyone really believe that he's 1/10th the goalie Howard is? Of course not. Well, I hope not. I have one word for you if you do: Legace.

Jimmy looked like a different goalie in the playoffs. The calm, loose demeanor on his face showed more frustration and fear. He also played like a different goalie. This year, it's no different; he just looks more and more scared and frustrated out there as the season's gone on. Again, we know he's physically and technically capable of being a great goalie. He's been given time off to relax, rest and work with Bedard. But upon returning, he still allows 4 goals against early on in a game. He finished strong, but it was too little too late. Next game he plays great when he wasn't expecting to play at all. The following game, back to Jimmy having to be the starter again and suddenly it's 5 goals in 15 minutes.

And it's not that Jimmy Howard should have stopped those 4 goals last night, it's that he's more than capable of stopping 3-4 of those goals and he simply isn't these days. Again, this isn't a physical thing, nor is it a new thing. Just look at the last 2 months to see the pattern. I really believe that the only logical explanation is that Howard's mental game is a mess right now. As I've been saying since last year, I just think we put too much on him too early. The mental element of being a starting NHL goalie is not something that's learned overnight or in a rookie season. It takes time. He hasn't been given that time and I believe that to be the reason he's now faltering.

All that to say, I have plenty of faith in Jimmy Howard's ability to be a solid if not great NHL starting goalie. Unfortunately though, I have more than a few doubts about the Wings management being able to reverse what they've done and get him back on a developmental path that will allow him to have a career in this league as opposed to becoming yet another goalie living up to the cliche of "great rookie year followed by sophomore slump." Babcock and/or Holland seemed to be realizing the need to give him some space to relax, watch and work on his game lately, and I hope that despite Osgood going down, they try to keep up with it a bit. I'd rather lose some games with Macdonald to help Howard long-term rather than continue to burn him out early. It'd just be an absolute shame to if we drove him to the point of no return.

And if you don't believe it's possible, just look at the long list of young goalies who have 1-2 strong years before crumbling into mediocrity and oftentimes falling out of the league. Some struggle with injuries, some with consistency, some get burned out, some crumble under pressure while some just make no sense any way you look at it.

Just to name a few...

Brian Boucher, Roman Turek, Corey Hirsch, Blaine Lacher, Roman Cechmanek, Darren Pang (Calder finalist) and last but certainly not least, the king of the one season wonders, Jim Carey.

How's Steve Mason's (Calder winner) career going? How about Pascal Leclaire? Where's Martin Gerber playing now?

And how many other goalies didn't come out of the gates looking like stars only to eventually develop into solid NHL goalies?

Hell, Hasek was a backup for 3 seasons before he ever got a chance to be a starter. And he started in the NHL at 25 too. Who's to say whether Hasek could've done all that he did if he had to carry the starter weight early? Maybe he would've been fine, but maybe he would've crumbled under the pressure. Only one thing can be said for certain: sitting back and watching other successful, proven starters do it for a few years certainly didn't hurt him. Not one bit.



I agree that some of Howard's lapses could be attributed to rookie mental mistakes, but I think they are few and far between. Howard has shown plenty of poise, I think you are fishing for a problem that simply doesn't exist. Even the greatest goalies had bad games or bad stretches we measure success in seasons not in games. Howard has had 1.5 seasons to evaluate him on and so far is deserving of a B+. Let's see how he finishes this year before we start worrying about if rushing him took a toll on his development or not.

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#11 eva unit zero

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Posted 12 January 2011 - 03:04 PM

Howard is 26, has played 1.5 seasons in the NHL, and has solid statistics. By comparison, MacDonald is 30 and has played 1 full season and parts of others, and has decent statistics. Howard's numbers have been better, but discounting MacDonald as an incapable goalie because he hasn't had the opportunity is stupid. He's a good goalie, and better than Legace.

On the Wings and Bruins there was zero percent chance for him to make the team. He went to NYI and had a good season, then signed with the Leafs, where he was supposed to tandem with Vesa Toskala, likely as the starter ahead of Toskrappy. However, Jonas Gustavsson popped up and not only took JMac's spot on the club, but took the starter role and ran with it until Burkie picked up Giguere. Gustavsson and Giguere now run on pretty close to a 50-50 split.

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#12 VanDer

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Posted 12 January 2011 - 07:46 PM

Babcock did say that they will play JMac as if he was Ozzie so...

#13 VM1138

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Posted 12 January 2011 - 07:58 PM

I say treat MacDonald like Ozzie, only with more starts, haha. Until he proves he can't handle a 50/50 split, roll with him.
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#14 13dangledangle

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Posted 13 January 2011 - 09:50 AM

I know this probably wont happen but I really want McCollum to get a couple starts before Ozzie gets back. I like this kid Too, and him and Howard will be a great future 1-2.
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#15 nate94gt

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Posted 13 January 2011 - 12:50 PM

Babcock did say that they will play JMac as if he was Ozzie so...


so once every 16 games?

#16 Hockeytown0001

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Posted 14 January 2011 - 09:58 PM

MacDonald for starter tomorrow. Please?

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#17 cjm502

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Posted 14 January 2011 - 10:02 PM

Sit J-Hos slumping ass and give Joey Mac a few games, he has looked great. There is nothing worse than an underachiever, and I think Howard is capable of carrying at least a .925 save % if he gave it his all every night.
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#18 HankthaTank

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Posted 14 January 2011 - 10:18 PM

MacDonald for starter tomorrow. Please?

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#19 VM1138

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Posted 14 January 2011 - 11:35 PM

Well, since he's our ONLY goalie for the moment (until someone is called up) I'd say he's going to play the lion's share of games while Howard and Ozzie are out. :lol:
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#20 syntax

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Posted 14 January 2011 - 11:49 PM

MacDonald for starter tomorrow. Please?


Trevor Thompson from FSN reported earlier that Macdonald will start tomorrow. McCollum being called up from GR.
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