Blackhawks News

NHL Power Rankings: Western Conference Goalies

By Matt Barbato
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4 of 6

Jun 15, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks goalie

Corey Crawford

hoists the Stanley Cup after defeating the Tampa Bay Lightning in game six of the 2015 Stanley Cup Final at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

3. Corey Crawford

Despite the many detractors of Crawford’s accomplishments, he is coming off of his second Stanley Cup championship season and had another strong campaign for the Chicago Blackhawks. Although he was yanked out of the first round series against Nashville, Crawford is a major reason why the ’Hawks were able to overcome the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Cup Final.

Crawford posted a very strong 2014-15 season. His spectacular .924 save percentage was the sixth best in the NHL and his 2.27 goals-against average was the 11th best in the league. ’He kept the Hawks afloat while they played the final 21 games of the season without their star, Patrick Kane.

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Advanced stats are very kind to Crawford. He rarely let up a soft goal, as his 98.12 save percentage against low-quality chances was the fifth best among goalies to play more than 2,000 minutes. He was also good against the scariest opportunities, stopping 83.88 percent of those shots.

The most telling stat is the amount of shots Crawford faced per game. Crawford was the only goalie from a playoff team to have faced more than 30 shots per contest. The fact that Crawford put up such tremendous numbers with very little help around him speaks volumes to his overall quality as a goaltender.

The facts are the facts, and they say Crawford is a top starter in the National Hockey League. It’s a reason why Stan Bowman didn’t even think of trading Crawford despite his lofty $6 million annual salary. It’s because Crawford is one of the best in the West and the NHL at stopping the puck.

Next: Who's No. 2?

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