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Thread: Irving to get a shot?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
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    Default Irving to get a shot?

    From the Everett Herald...

    The Everett Silvertips' backup goaltender has played well of late and, with starting netminder Michael Wall struggling, the coaching staff plans to re-evaluate the position.
    "I think we have to sit and look at that," Everett coach Kevin Constantine said. "We've always kind of played our goalies one game at a time. We've never promised our goalies the last two years that we weren't going to evaluate things game by game by game and see who should play."
    The 16-year-old Irving has done everything the Silvertips have asked this season. He's 5-4-1 with a sterling 1.61 goals-against average and a .939 save percentage. His save percentage would rank first in the Western Hockey League and his goals-against average would be second if he'd played enough minutes to qualify among the leaders.
    Meanwhile, Wall has struggled lately. Wall's numbers are still very good - 16-14-5, 2.04 goals-against average, .924 save percentage. But in his past three starts, Wall has surrendered 11 goals on 57 shots, and Everett lost all three games.
    As a result, Irving started two of Everett's three games over the weekend. He was stellar in Everett's 3-1 victory over Spokane on Sunday, making 25 saves - though he didn't receive credit for the win because Wall made a brief appearance that happened to coincide with the game-winning goal.
    "At the start of the year you tend to give a guy who has the most experience first crack at things," Constantine said. "We gave Mike first crack this year and for the most part, he's done the job. But at the same time, if you're not playing well and the other guy is playing well, then the other guy gets a shot, too. So I don't know what we'll do exactly, but we never have designated - this year or last year - a guy as No. 1 or No. 2."


    Sounds to me like Irving is going to get a shot at it. I think this is a good thing. He may be young, but he has more pure talent, IMO, than Wall.
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  2. #2

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    I've said this many, many times ... Irving is absolutely a goalie that gets better and better the more he plays. One game here and there, and he's just 'so-so' ... but give him 3 or 4 in a row, and he's unbeatable in that 4th game.

    He's quicker, got a better glove, and gets up faster than Wall. Wall plays the angles better, but gives up too many juicy rebounds, and has a tough time getting back into position quick enough. Wall does much better coming in cold and for spot work than he does being the workhorse.

    They're a good tandem, but are playing the opposite (and wrong) roles right now.

    Time will tell if Leland can hold up over a long stretch, but my money is squarely on him ... even at 16
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