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Hunter56

U.S. or Europe - Which one has had the better goalie production?

U.S. or European Goalies?   25 members have voted

  1. 1. Which one has had the best over the years?


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24 posts in this topic

Something that I started thinking about recently and thought it would be a good debate. I originally was thinking Canada-US-Europe but quickly knew it would've been absurd due to Canada massively outnumbering the other two.

I'll be honest, if it were a few years ago it would probably be Europe -- but due to what has transpired over the last couple seasons I think that the U.S. has a pretty strong standing. Two American goalies in the past two seasons has won the very prestigious Con Smytte trophy, something that no European goalie has yet to do (at least to my knowledge) but that doesn't take away to how good some goalies from Europe have been.

I'll list a few notables from both, if you have any other info please feel free to chime in.

U.S. Notables:

Frank "Mr. Zero" Brimsek

Frank_Brimsek_Boston.jpg

Tom Barrasso

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Mike Richter

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John Vanbiesbrouck

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Tim Thomas

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Jonathan Quick

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European Notables:

Vladislav Tretiak

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Dominik Hasek

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Miikka Kiprusoff

miikka-kiprusoff.jpg

Nikolai Khabibulin

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Pekka Rinne

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I guess it depends on how you define 'better'. By volume, I would say more quality goalies have come out of Europe.

Some more examples...

Henrik Lundqvist

Olaf Kolzig

Jaro Halak

Arturs Irbe

Peter Skudra

Cristobal Huet

Evgeni Nabokov

Ilya Bryzgalov

Simeon Varlamov

Sergei Bobrovsky

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a list of current european nhl goalies..most of them are starters in their teams

Sergei Brobovsky

Dimitri Nabokov

Simeon Varlamov

Henrik Lundqvist

Ilya Bryzgalov

Jaroslav Halak

Jonas Hiller

Antti Niemi

Kari Lethonen

Tuukka Rask

Ondrej Pavelec

Michal Neuvirth

Tomas Vokoun

i guess i missed some guys

well as german i think thomas greiss has a huge potential

would like to see play him more than 15 games per season

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I'm surprised no one had mentioned Schneider yet.

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IMO, Europe has outproduced the U.S. over hockey history; even if they weren't in the NHL as early as the Americans they still dominated on the international stage (Tretiak, Dzurilla, Lindmark), and the pioneers into the NHL were amazing (Hasek, Lindbergh, Kolzig). Now, look at how many top-notch goalies since the new millennium are European (Nabokov, Khabibulin, Kiprusoff, Lundqvist, Rinne, Halak).

But, I'd say the States right now has the best goalies out of any country (Thomas, Quick, Miller, Howard, Schneider) with Finland (Kiprusoff, Rinne, Backstrom, Lehtonen, Rask) a close second.

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I'm surprised no one had mentioned Schneider yet.

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Europe produced the best goalie of all time in Hasek. Europe also produced 2 out of the top 5 of all time.

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Europe produced the best goalie of all time in Hasek. Europe also produced 2 out of the top 5 of all time.

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Its an interesting question ! I've played on both ice surfaces and I believe playing on the larger ice surface in Europe makes goaltending more dificult. You definitely need to be a very good skater, have great fundamentals and have great lateral movement. The larger area behind the goal makes it more difficult to play the puck and riskier to roam. Shooters have more ice width, shot angles are more varied and more one on one opportunities. I think the european game is faster. I believe european goalies need to be quicker. Only thing tougher in N america is the crashing the net and the screens. Sealing off the bottom of the net is more evident in NHL goalies. Once upon a time, N american goalies were far better, now, not quite so sure. I believe goaltending techniques have been adopted by both venues. I can see guys like Schneider and Smith doing well over in Europe. Guys like Luongo, would not be successful.

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Rinne and Lundqvist are prob the 2 best in the world right now. Schnieder doesn't count towards the US, we produced him :>

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Some good answers so far. I actually didn't vote because I'm so uncertain and wanted your all's opinion.

Europe produced the best goalie of all time in Hasek.

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A continent versus a country.

I can see how this is a legitimate comparison.

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A continent versus a country.

I can see how this is a legitimate comparison.

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Rinne and Lundqvist are prob the 2 best in the world right now. Schnieder doesn't count towards the US, we produced him :>

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Yet if the question was Canada vs. Europe, Canada would rightfully win. Roy, Brodeur, Sawchuck, and Plante are better than Hasek, Tretiak, Lundqvist and Kipper.

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Seriously???? Sawchuk and Plante over Tretiak and Hasek !!! Surely you Jest ??

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I'm still pretty neutral but I decided to vote for the U.S. cause I'm starting to feel sorry for them. :mellow:

I agree that no U.S. goalie so far would be considered one of the greatest of all time, like Hasek and Tretiak; but I do think they have a lot more accomplishments than they're given credit for.

Like how about the first American goalie to come into the NHL -- Mike Karakas -- in the 1930's (I believe just a few seasons before Brimsek) winning the Stanley Cup with a broken toe?

Also the two goalies for the U.S.A gold medal winning teams: Jack Mccartan and Jim Craig (more for their olympic heroics than NHL careers though)

I'd also like to mention Steve Baker, who won nine out of his first ten games in his rookie season and made it to the semi-finals in 1981. The thing is he retired after only 4 seasons! (1979-1983)

Also let's not forget Ryan Miller, who has the potential to be one of the greatest American goalies.

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