Vitek Vanecek Can Hold Down Regular Season
This one might be hard to convince, but for all the issues Vitek Vanecek had in the playoffs, he was just as successful in the regular season. All the accolades were well covered. He’s the only goalie not named Martin Brodeur to win 30 games. He had a .911 save percentage. Vanecek was one of the main reasons the Devils ended up with the third-best record in the NHL. After a season where seven goalies couldn’t stop a beach ball, Vanecek was a breath of fresh air.
Yes, we know. The playoffs looked more like Jon Gillies at his worst than the regular season Vanecek. He was the second-worst goalie in the playoffs on any team. We cannot ignore that in this point. The Devils goaltending cannot be “Vanecek or bust” this season. However, he can absolutely hold down the fort when the pressure is off.
What do the Devils do in the playoffs? If they go with the current group, the idea has to be that Akira Schmid takes the net. There’s no other option at this point. Nico Daws is very hurt and will miss the beginning of the season with a hip injury. He likely isn’t an answer, at least this year.
Vanecek will likely start next season in Newark. Unless a massive goalie trade is in the works, the Devils are sticking with the current group.