Of the 503 games that have been played in the NHL so far this season, 75 of them have gone to the shootout. So, about 15 percent of them. Like it or not (count me in the not department), the shootout remains a significant factor in the standings.
Here are three goalies who have been good (and busy) in the breakaway competition:
Jhonas Enroth (Sabres) — Has faced 18 shots and saved 17 of them. In a related story, Buffalo is 5-1 in the shootout. Which perfectly demonstrates my problem with it. There’s little, if any, correlation between a good shootout team and a good hockey team.
Pekka Rinne (Predators) — 19 shots, just two goals allowed. The Preds, who went 2-9 in the shootout last season and missed the playoffs by three points, are 4-1 this season.
Roberto Luongo (Panthers) — a whopping 49 shots, with 11 goals allowed. Not the best save percentage, but he did make this save on Chris Kunitz last night:
Honorable mentions: Sergei Bobrovsky (26 shots, 4 allowed) and Jaroslav Halak (15 shots, 3 allowed)
Now, here are three goalies who haven’t fared so well:
Jimmy Howard (Red Wings): 15 shots, 11 goals allowed, for a save percentage of .267. Which is absolutely dreadful. Detroit, as a result, is 1-7 in the shootout.
Steve Mason (Flyers): 15 shots, 8 goals allowed. Philly has yet to win a shootout, going 0-5.
Jonathan Quick (Kings): 10 shots, 5 goals allowed. The Kings are 1-4 in the “gimmick.”