Friday, May 18, 2007

Devan Dubnyk - where is his career heading?

Draft day minus 1, 2004 - Robin Brownlee was confident the Oilers would select Regina Native Devan Dubnyk. Him or Drew Stafford. After Buffalo selected Stafford at 13, the Oilers went with backup plan (pun not intended), Devan Dubnyk

Dubnyk had posted a .917 sv% in the year leading up to draft day. A big lanky guy at 6-5, and 194 pounds. Some of the Oiler nation wanted Marek Schwarz. Safe to say, Dubnyk has proven himself to be the better goaltender of the first round.

He then went on to post two consecutive years of a .912 SV%.

His .921 SV% in the ECHL was OK, although not dominant. .913 % in 6 games in the playoffs, and a .855 SV% in 4 games in the AHL.

I still think he'll be an NHL goaltender, but there are questions surrounding whether he'll ever be able to dominate. There is a possibility that he'll be a career backup

Some of the elite goalies tend to stand out

Cam Ward - .911, .920, .926 in Red Deer. .937 in 50 games as a 20 year old in the AHL
Harding - .906, .914, .927 and .920 in the WHL. .930, .922, .920 in 3 seasons in the AHL. .960 in 7 games in the NHL.
Lehtonen - .926 and .929 in the AHL

There's progression in the numbers from those guys, whereas for Dubnyk he's been pretty much at the same level.

On the other hand, I took a look at the busts category of goaltenders since 2000. Usually most of them have had a year or two of SV%'s in the 800's (AsiaOil - there's JDD for you). Names like Krahn, Chouinard, Ellis, Bacashihua, Munro, Daigneault, Crawford are goaltenders drafted in the first or second round in the past decade that seem to fit the category.

Dubnyk's lowest SV% has been .912 - and we can factor Kamloops being a poor team and spending plenty of time in the PK box. Mind you, perhaps that experience may have made him a better goalie. Look at Leland Irving - great numbers, but playing behind a very solid team who doesn't give up many good chances or shots. He went from .929SV% in the regular season to .887SV% in the playoffs.

In Summary, Dubnyk's been good - but not dominant.

I found David LeNeveu to be the best comparison for Dubnyk (and there haven't been many)

If Dubnyk wants to prove himself in the elite category, he'll need a season with a minimum of a .920 SV% - and upwards to .930% shouldn't be out of question. High expectation, but for a 14th overall pick and with the likes of Radulov, Zajac, Wolski, Chipchura, and Meszaros picked after him - you should be expecting big.

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