Sunday, February 10, 2013
Can You Figure Him Out?? Fasth??
The legend of Viktor Fasth will start to grow more and more as people will get more exposed to him due to an injury to Jonas Hiller. However, people have started to talk about him enough thanks to his 5-0-0 start coupled with a 1.92 GAA and .932 save percentage.
More over, should we really be surprised by this??
Getting over the fact that he's 30 years old and has been in Sweden for his professional career leading into this season, Fasth is really not a unique case study for surprising goalies coming on to take the world by storm. Fasth just joins the group of Johan Hedberg, Patrick Lalime, and Jim Carey (to name a few) when it comes to rookie goalies coming into the landscape and dominating the goaltending stats.
While goaltending is often regarded as one of the toughest positions to mature and adjust to, it's also a position where teams can be tricked into a goalie is unbeatable. In a mental game, the goalie who comes into the league without many players knowing his scouting report-- they are often successful in their first long stretch. Lalime is the prime example, as he went unbeaten in his first 16 games (14-0-2), which is a NHL record to begin a career. Hedberg is a guy who got a late call-up in 2001 and went 7-1-1 before helping the Penguins get to the Eastern Conference finals that year, as well. And we all know about Jim Carey.
However, that doesn't mean that Fasth will fall into this mold, it's just a precautionary measure. While goalies are able to readapt their game, the use of video is much more prevalent in the game today than it was in the past, so teams will be able to pick up on the changes faster and faster.
The best thing working in the favor of Fasth is the fact that the other names I have mentioned came up from the minors leagues or college before actually getting into the NHL. Fasth's disadvantage could have been playing in Sweden on the bigger ice, thus the angles being different. Fasth has seemed to pick up on that quickly, which is working to his advantage. It's a matter of keeping that advantage which only time will tell.