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Thursday November 11, 2010 5:17 pm

Tomas Vokoun among the most underappreciated goalies in the NHL




Posted by Adrien Griffin Categories: Athletes, NHL,

Tomas VokounYou know that Martin Brodeur has been one of the best goalies of our time, and that others such as Roberto Luongo and Tim Thomas are up among the top performers, but how much of the success of these three owes to the fact they play in hockey hotbeds? Compare them to one Tomas Vokoun, whose career currently with the Florida Panthers and formerly of the Nashville Predators goes largely unnoticed due to his winter home in the Sun Belt.

In fact, Vokoun has been one of the best goalies over the last dozen years. He’s in the top 10 in many goaltending categories, including saves and save percentage. He’s been tested frequently between the pipes and has come up strong for his team on several occasions, but you would never know it because the team in front of him has had just as much trouble putting pucks in the net as those trying to score against him.

Vokoun had a career high .926 save percentage in 2008-09, which dropped a single point last season. Despite the respectable numbers, his record over the two seasons sits at 49-51-17. Vokoun has fallen off a bit this year. He’s 5-5-0 with a .914 save percentage, but his team is just as much to blame as he is. Vokoun himself is entirely capable of playing at an elite level and help his Panthers climb the ranks in the Eastern Conference.

At 34 years of age, Vokoun is entering a stage in his career where his skills will start to fall off. Unfortunately for the Czech-born goalie, he’s had a good career in bad hockey markets. But as the Panthers try to get younger, there’s a chance Vokoun will be dealt to another club during the season, possibly giving him a chance to make a postseason run near the twilight of his career. If that’s the case, Vokoun will definitely make the most of it.

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