Friday, December 08, 2006


I was interested in this morning's Washington Post story about Olaf Kolzig. What interested me was the accompanying graphic (above).

I thought to myself, Gee, top ten in save percentage, and he's still allowing 21 percent more goals (on a per 60-minute basis) than the next highest goalie in that list. Why?

That 35.1 number.

He might be God between the pipes, but at this level of play, there isn't a lot of difference among goalies in terms of the percentage of shots they save (in this list, Huet is about 1.5 percent "better" than is Kolzig). For Kolzig to have a GAA as good as Toskala (the best GAA in this list), he'd have to have a save percentage of .944.They can talk until the cows come home about how he plays better with a higher volume of shots. The numbers bear out that he saves a higher percentage of shots in a high shot-volume game. But in the end, the game has a scoreboard, and the currency is goals. His GAA is 3.00, significantly poorer than the rest of the goalies on this list. It's asking a lot of him that he's likely to have to play better than he has for the Caps to have a real shot at a playoff spot, given the volume of shots he sees. This club needs to find a happier medium.

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