FanPost

Team Fasth V Team Hiller

I decide to make charts. It's hard to make charts in threads. So here goes:

On February 20, 2013, the Anaheim Ducks signed Victor Fasth to a 2-year extension worth $5.8 million. This comes during a five game break between games where the Ducks sit atop the Pacific Division with 25 points going 12-2-1 for the early season and second overall in the Western Conference. With only a total of nine NHL games played, the Ducks rewarded Fasth’s stellar play with an extension as he was signed for a one year, free agent agreement. In those nine games, Fasth has started eight of them going 8-0-0 with one shut out.

Fasth was signed to be a backup to current starter Jonas Hiller during the offseason. In the 15 games played so far in this shortened season, Hiller has backstopped the Ducks with a record of 4-2-1. A very respectable record except his GAA is 3.43 and Save % is 0.880. Going undefeated in eight consecutive games posting one shutout with a GAA of 1.78 and a Save % of .933, Fasth has flourished on NHL ice. Since Hiller’s vertigo symptoms started three seasons ago, for these past two seasons Duck fans have become accustomed to Hiller starting off slow, as shown in this previous sentence.

During the unbeaten streak, Fasth does not own the best GAA nor Save %. As of today, February 21, 2013, he’s ranked 6th overall in GAA and tied for 7th for Save %. It’s a very small sample to give a two year extension to a rookie netminder. But GM Bob Murray is on record saying, “Viktor has proven himself not only this year in the NHL, but the previous two seasons as the top goaltender in Sweden.”

Let’s a quick peek at our two netminders, shall we?

Hiller’s Career Stats

Season

Team

GAA

Sv %

SO

2003

Lausanne

3.55

1

2004

Davos

2.24

8

2005

Davos

2.3

4

2006

Davos

2.6

3

2007

Ana

2.06

0.927

0

2008

Ana

2.39

0.919

4

2009

Ana

2.73

0.918

2

2010

Ana

2.56

0.924

5

2011

Ana

2.57

0.91

4

2012

Ana

3.43

0.88

0

Fasth’s Career Stats

Season

Team

GAA

Sv %

SO

2003

Tvastad Cobras

0.898

2004

Tingsryd

3.82

0.871

2005

Tingsryd

2.49

0.91

2006

Tingsryd

2.22

0.924

2007

Vaxjo

2.25

0.926

2008

Vaxjo

3.04

0.921

2009

Vaxjo

2.15

0.93

4

2010

AIK

2.26

0.925

2

2011

AIK

2.04

0.934

5

2012

Tingsryd+

1.68

0.942

1

Ana

1.78

0.933

1

<!--[if !supportLists]-->· +Played 12 games during NHL Lockout.

Statistically speaking, Fasth looks amazing for quite some time. Even if Fasth comes back down to a low Sv % of 0.921, he would still be ranked in the top 12 as of today. Similarly, if his GAA drops to a low of 2.26, he would still be ranked as a top 12 goalie statistically. Now I see why Bob Murray was in a hurry to lock this goaltender up sooner than later as these nine games was more or less a test to evaluate if Fasth’s type of play can translate to the smaller NA ice. And based upon Fasth’s body of work, there is not much not to like.

This extension could pose a problem if one allows it to become a problem. Hiller is signed until the 2013-2014 season. Fasth’s extension ends in 2014-2015. Hiller makes $4.5 million a year, where Fasth’s will be $2.9 million cap space per year. Eventually, one of those netminders have to be let go with the salary cap coming down $6 million next season and the necessity to re-sign their twin superstars Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry, who could be looking at a $6.5 - $7 million range each.

Yet this drama need not take place right now as Fasth is only set to make $1 million this season. It will be during the offseason that will be quite interesting. Bob assures us that no drama exists immediately with, “We are fortunate to keep him and feel fortunate to have two top NHL goaltenders going forward.”

This article is user-generated. It does not necessarily reflect the views of Anaheim Calling. Please do not link this article as representative of Anaheim Calling content or viewpoints . . . unless it's <em>really</em> really good.

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