Stick With The Man, Stick To The Plan: Akira Schmid Should Make Devils Roster

Akira Schmid #40 of the New Jersey Devils. (Photo by Jaylynn Nash/Getty Images)
Akira Schmid #40 of the New Jersey Devils. (Photo by Jaylynn Nash/Getty Images) /

Akira Schmid should be the man for the New Jersey Devils in net. This article will use 32 starts as a barometer for goalies to explain why. This will give you an idea of what to expect in moderation. The Swiss goaltender is coming off a career-defining season and postseason. Now, the Devils have to let him build off that.

Wins For Schmid in 2023-24

Schmid started 14 games in the regular season and won nine of them. At that pace, Schmid is looking at a possibility of 21 wins if he is given 32 games in net. This would bank 42 crucial points already without factoring in overtime and shootout losses. This would mean Schmid would allow Vitek Vanecek to play in a max of 50 games during the regular season.

Shutout Potential

The very calm netminder from Switzerland netted a shutout last season. Not counting his shutout in Game 7 against the New York Rangers. His pace would give him two shutouts over that 32-game pace.

Schmid’s ergonomics, mechanics, and mindset keeps pucks out of the net. He never looks jumpy, unlike his counterpart. The defense in front of him is much more physical and defensively aware without Ryan Graves in the lineup. The Swiss netminder proved he can shut out opponents with ease. The bar is raised for seasons to come. He does have the ability to inject confidence and calmness in his teammates to make his job easier to do.

The Depth in Net

Seeing Schmid net an 8.2 Goals Saved Above Expected at 18th per despite a lack of ice time. If he were to grow that to 16.0 GSAE, that would make Schmid a potential top-10 goalie in that department. His GSAE per 60 was 0.54 and saved blocked and unblocked shots to a near 95% and 96% of the attempts.

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There is no need to overpay for an external goalie if the goalie is much older, and looking for a bigger cap hit. That could severely backfire. Sticking with Akira Schmid in the near and long term allows him to grow his confidence and familiarity with his teammates and staff. That will lead to more wins.