The post Grant Fuhr’s Insights: What Truly Matters for Goalies in Today’s NHL appeared first on NHL Trade Talk.

With the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs looming closer, Betway had a chance to sit down with Edmonton Oilers legendary goaltender Grant Fuhr. His name has been tossed around the season, especially when it comes to the Oilers and Stuart Skinner’s performance as he broke Fuhr’s win streak record. Betway was able to pick the Hall of Famer’s brains a bit about what he thinks of some current NHL discussions. Among the topics addressed were goalie statistics, what it takes to win, and some current NHL teams.

Are Goalie Stats Important?

During the interview, Fuhr expressed, “I’m not a fan of save percentage. I’m a fan of ‘Can you make the right save at the right time?”. This statement might prompt some NHL fans to reconsider how they perceive their goalies. Is save percentage truly significant? Or is it merely a crucial statistic for evaluating goalies? It serves as a measure of a goalie’s performance, but according to Grant Fuhr, it’s not the sole indicator.

The longest undefeated streak by an #Oilers goalie is 23 games by Grant Fuhr in 1982-82. #LetsGoOilers

— Paul Almeida (@AzorcanGlobal) January 25, 2024

Fuhr comments:

You can get your shots on goal, your save percentage, you get your goals against average, but those don’t tell you what kind of goals they’re giving up. Are they good goals? Are they soft goals? What created that goal? What created that dynamic?

NHL fans frequently voice complaints about goalies when a goal is scored. They receive the most criticism in the league and are held accountable. However, it’s essential to consider the other factors: Were the defensemen fulfilling their roles? Were the forwards backchecking? Whose assignment was left unattended? All these factors have to be taken into account when assessing a goal. The blame doesn’t always fall solely on the goalie.

One topic Fuhr said is important to him as a goalie is rebound control. Great rebound control can make it easier on the team. It generates fewer net front scrambles, player fatigue, and penalties drawn. When making those saves and placing rebounds in good spots, goalies can have more control over the game. This is something for present NHL goalies to think about as the playoffs draw closer. Do you think a goalie’s stats are important? Or is it all about playing in the moment?

The Secret to Success

Grant Fuhr won four Stanley Cups during his time in the NHL. In this interview, he talked about some of his exhausting seasons where he played over 70 regular season games. He loved getting to play, but it takes a lot of mental strength to keep pushing through those long seasons.

He commented:

I think that’s the thing; one, you have to enjoy playing, two, you have to have a reasonable pain tolerance, because usually you feel good the first day of training camp, and that’s the only day you feel really good.

Some may not realize the constant pain and exhaustion that comes with being a professional hockey player. With four games a week, team practices, and daily workouts, it is no wonder why mental strength is the key to success. If a player is lacking mental strength, the chances of an injury can increase. Fuhr states “You’re going to get tired at some point, but then you’ve got to have the mental prowess to push through it”. The amount of pain these athletes go through daily is unbelievable. More often than not, the team that pushes through that pain has the best chance at winning the Stanley Cup.

Current NHL Teams, Including the Oilers

The legendary goalie talks about some current NHL teams. These teams mainly included the Edmonton Oilers and Toronto Maple Leafs. Fuhr played for both of those teams, so he was able to relate to them easier than others. He loved playing for both as the cities are obsessed with hockey and has a never-ending passion for the game.

He’ll be forever linked to Edmonton and has been closely watching Skinner’s progression as a netminder. Saying he’ll be cheering on the Oilers, there’s a lot of pressure on Skinner this season, especially after Jack Campbell was placed in the minors with his own struggles.

He also spoke about the rigors of playoff hockey, when it comes to both the Maple Leafs and Oilers. He noted:

With Toronto the last couple of years, when they play big, physical teams, they struggle with it. Look at last year, that’s what the Florida Panthers were. A big, heavy, physical team, and they will be this year too. They’re going to have to learn how to play that game.

Since the playoffs include more hits, fights, and blocked shots, the toughest teams survive while the weaker ones lose early. Are the Toronto Maple Leafs tough enough to go on a deep run? The Edmonton Oilers are in the same boat as they may face the Vegas Golden Knights, Winnipeg Jets, or Vancouver Canucks. Those teams are no easy task and each made significant trades to improve their roster earlier this year. Will this be the year a Canadian team finally wins the Stanley Cup?

Up Next: Journalist Posts Odd Rant Demeaning Hyman’s 50-Goal Milestone

The post Grant Fuhr’s Insights: What Truly Matters for Goalies in Today’s NHL appeared first on NHL Trade Talk.

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