There seems to be no doubt, at this point, that the two hottest goalies of the Playoffs are Jonathan Quick and Henrik Lundqvist. The Los Angeles Kings have charged past the 1 and 2 seeds in the west, and are well on their way to upending the three seed. The Rangers have scuffled a bit more, going 7 games in their two series to this point. One thing is for sure, however, and that’s that the pair have carried their teams through the playoffs this year.
The case for Quick is that his goals against average going into today’s game was lower, and that the opponents, seeds 1,2,3 in the west, were better. There is no doubt that Quick and his 1.41 GAA average, with two shutouts is stellar, and likely carried the Kings, though Los Angeles has been able to score some goals for Quick. The most amazing thing, to me, to come from Quick, is that in 12 games, he has allowed 17 goals. In his two previous post seasons, he allowed 21 goals in 2010 and 20 in 2011. In each of those years, he played 6 games. He has played twice as many games this year, and allowed fewer goals than each. Incredible.
Henrik Lundqvist, on the other hand, had a GAA of 1.66 through 16 games, and it will certainly be lower after his shut out today (by my math, it should be about 1.56 GA). Lundqvist (pictured at top) has been able to maintain his blistering pace while playing more games in higher pressure situations. Not only that, but the Rangers have played deep into overtime, including one game with three OTs against the Washington Capitals. The fact that Lundqvist has managed to maintain his GAA rate while losing 7 games completely blows my mind.
If you asked me which keeper I would want in my net in the clutch, I would have to say I would want Lundqvist. Yes, Quick has been good, but he’s had support. Lundqvist has stood on his head, even when the Rangers have been in trouble.