Behind The Mask: Semyon Varlamov among stingiest | Hockey | CBC Sports

NHL Goalie Power RankingsBehind The Mask: Semyon Varlamov among stingiest

Posted: Thursday, October 17, 2013 | 11:12 AM

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Semyon Varlamov (1) has been sensational for the Avalanche, posting a miniscule 1.20 GAA in five winning starts this season. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images) Semyon Varlamov (1) has been sensational for the Avalanche, posting a miniscule 1.20 GAA in five winning starts this season. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

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Hockey Night in Canada analyst Kelly Hrudey ranks the Top 10 goaltenders in each NHL conference every two weeks.

The first Top 10 goalies in each conference that I wrote seemed to be much easier than coming up with the rankings now that the NHL season is two weeks into games.

These ranking will include individual goalies and, in some cases, both goalies from a team because they've both excelled and deserve a mention.



NHL Eastern Conference

1. TUUKA RASK (3-2-0, 1.41)

Rask is off to a spectacular start. He reads a play as well as any goalie in the league plus he's very athletic, which makes him a treat to watch.
2. CAREY PRICE (3-2-0, 1.81)

Price and Peter Budaj both deserve credit for Montreal's strong start to the season. The duo was brilliant on the team's recent Western Canadian road trip.
3. MARC-ANDRE FLEURY (5-0-0, 1.80)

Fleury has rebounded extremely well from last season's playoff mess. He surely has regained the trust of his teammates, which is a key for any goalie.
4. JONATHAN BERNIER (4-1-0, 1.75)

Jonathan Bernier and James Reimer make my list, even though they have had one ordinary game each. Their other starts have been sensational and the main reason why the Leafs are atop the Eastern Conference.
5. BEN BISHOP (5-0-0, 1.80)

Bishop has been a force in the Tampa Bay net, winning all four games he's played by using his size to his advantage.
6. RYAN MILLER (1-4-0, 2.39)

Miller is playing so well that he has to be given credit, even though he only has a single victory. Wins only tell part of the story when ranking goalies.
7. SERGEI BOBROVSKY (2-3-0, 2.18)

Bobrovsky has played like the Vezina Trophy winner he was last year. I was a little worried after playing so well last year that he might struggle a little to start, but he hasn't one bit.
8. JIMMY HOWARD (3-2-0, 2.39)

Howard and Jonas Gustavsson belong in the Top 10 simply because they've worked great as a tandem, especially with Howard slightly injured (hand contusion).
9. CRAIG ANDERSON (2-1-2, 3.10)

Anderson and Robin Lehner have done their very best in keeping Ottawa in the race early in the season. Defensively, the Senators are off to a slow start, but the goaltending has kept them in contention.
10. EVGENI NABOKOV (2-1-2, 2.29)

Nabokov puts in a consistent effort almost every night and that's why he's been a quality goalie for so many years.

NHL Western Conference

1. SEMYON VARLAMOV (5-0-0, 1.20)

Varlamov and J.S. Giguere have propelled the surprising Avalanche to an amazing start. As impressed I am with Varlamov's game, I was especially happy to see Giguere get a shutout in his only start so far.
2. JOSH HARDING (3-1-0, 0.94)

Harding is on fire. He's playing the best hockey of his career. Here's a case where the stats don't lie.
3. JONAS HILLER (3-0-0, 1.30)

Hiller has responded to the challenge of playing alongside the highly touted Viktor Fasth. Hiller has seized the opportunity by playing as well as he ever has.
4. KARI LEHTONEN (2-1-0, 1.57)

Lehtonen's body of work has been short but brilliant. Everyone knows of his importance to the Stars and, for that reason, I sure hope he heals quickly and can return to the ice, maybe as soon as the end of the week.
5. ANTTI NIEMI (6-0-0, 1.50)

Niemi just doesn't get the love he deserves around the NHL. Niemi is a huge reason why the Sharks are undefeated.
6. COREY CRAWFORD (3-1-1, 2.33)

Crawford is as poised and steady as you will find in the NHL. His competitive nature shines through in every game he plays.
7. JAROSLAV HALAK (4-1-0, 2.36 )

Halak seems to be back on track now that he's healthy. Although the Blues don't normally give up tons of chances, Halak has the ability to stay focused to make the big stop.
8. BEN SCRIVENS (1-0-0, 1.22)

Scrivens has played very well in a supporting role. It's never easy being in a situation where it's all but certain that Jonathan Quick is the go-to guy. But Scrivens has filled in admirably.
9. MIKE SMITH (3-2-1, 3.17)

Smith has had moments where he's been brilliant and others where he's been kind of ordinary like his teammates. I really like the way he competes, so I suspect he will find his consistency soon.
10. JOEY MACDONALD (3-1-1, 2.99)

MacDonald might surprise some people because if you look at his numbers they don't stand out but MacDonald has made the key stops in critical points in the games allowing the Flames to get points early in the season.

Follow Kelly Hrudey on Twitter @KellyHrudey

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