While I tend to believe Howard is better than average, I do agree with this statement. I hope I am wrong because Howard is here to stay and will probably get a $5M+ contract this summer as Holland loves to overpay for mid-level talent...as shown by some of the contracts he has handed out...when it comes to Elite players, he tends to underpay...although kudos for the pursuit of the Olsen Twins...but I honestly see him giving Jimmy a way overpayment for what he has earned...which is nothing. Hell even Cheveldae won 112 games in his 5 years in Detroit...Legace won 108 in 6 years...Howard is at 115 in 5 years, all with no Cups won (outside of Legace's as a backup.)
Do I think Howard is better than Cheveldae or Legace, yes, but he is not elite...but who is anymore?
I think its kinda funny how people for years said that Osgood was average, but he won 3 cups with Detroit and over 400 wins in his career which is #10 all time. Mike Vernon, who many consider to be the holy grail of goaltenders in Detroit because he led them to a cup win in 97 was #12 on the all time wins list. Jimmy is winning half of his games, and if he continues to do so, he will eclipse the 400 win plateau easily.
Right now, we don't know how much Howie is going to resign for. It must be nice to be able to tell the future and pull a number out of your ass, but in the end, that number just comes straight from your ass.
Oh, and a cup win is a cup win. Its not like Legace did nothing that season, so don't cherry pick your stats.
There are going to be detractors and cheerleaders for Howard, thats for sure. Any intelligent hockey fan is going to be able to point out two simple truths.
1. Howard, just like any goalie, is only going to be as good as the team he plays in front of. This is a team game. How many playoff runs did Roberto Luongo lead the Florida Panthers to? Zero. Yet, I believe Luongo is a great goalie. Look at any elite goalie who has won a cup or multiple cups as well. If the team is horrible in front of them, they aren't going to make any headway. A goalie isn't going to win a cup on his own.
2. How well the team is playing is tied to how the goalie does. Right now, the Red Wings are banged up and are in serious trouble. The last thing we should be doing is blaming Howard and calling him out for being average. Is Jonathan Quick average or are the Kings playing horrible hockey in front of him? Hell, this was the same team that won the cup last year. Right now, Chicago and Anaheim are playing great, and their goalies are the beneficiaries of that great play. It wouldn't matter if the Wings had Patrick Roy in his prime playing right now. The Wings would not have won more games this season with Roy in his prime than with Jimmy.
The sooner that people realize that Howard is just a piece of the puzzle, and not the entire puzzle, then we will be much better off.