Morning Papers Take: The Price will eventually rise

Posted by Richard Pollock in Morning Papers take,NHL Morning Papers on November 4, 2009 — No Comments

In the Eastern Conference Morning Papers, Red Fisher of the Montreal Gazettecommented that the Habs won’t go very far with the current goaltending provided by Carey Price:

Do not, however, hold your breath waiting for it to happen.

The notion among Canadiens watchers is that the Canadiens will go as far as Price will take them. At least, that was their feeling before the start of the season, and perhaps still is. However, he is not likely to take them anywhere with the goaltending he’s delivered in most of his games. You won’t find a goaltender … any goaltender … pround of an .883 save percentage.

Fisher is right about Price so far this season.  The youngster sits with a .883 save percentage which places him 35th overall in the National Hockey League.  His 3.64 G.A.A. is actually worse, placing him 37th in the entire NHL in that category.  So, it is clear that Price is struggling. 

The next question is, what is the team to do?  While it feels like he has been around forever, Carey Price is only 22 years old.  He is big, positionally sound when he has confidence and makes the game look easy.  Remember, it isn’t like he is without a track record–Price has won a World Junior Championship and a Calder Cup.  So, do the Habs ride Jaroslav Halak?  I personally don’t think so.  That is not an indictment of Halak, who has an .893 save percentage and 2.85 G.A.A., but rather a reflection on Price’s natural talent combined with the overall lack of talent on the Habs roster.  Halak is talented, but few would tell you he possesses more talent than Price.

At the end of the day, the Habs are basically a one line offensive team, playing without their best defenseman, and isn’t the object of playing the game to win the Cup?  If so, the Habs aren’t going to do that this year, so they might as well let Price go through some growing pains and the maturation process that most young players have to go through–even in Montreal.