Sunday, March 8, 2009

WHL Poll Voters Miss the S-Torrie

Back on March 1st Rod Pederson, the voice of the Regina Pats and all around great guy, posted the results of the annual "Best of the East" poll. The Poll is created by Brandon Wheat Kings voice Bruce Luebke. The poll was given to teams in order to get responses from coaches, GMs and players to a series of categories.

Here are the official results of the poll.

The one category where the voters completely missed the boat - the Top Netminders in the Eastern Conference.

I have no qualms with Braden Holtby, he would have been #1 on my list too. I can understand how Martin Jones from the Hitmen makes it because his team is unbelievably tough to beat and he plays a decent role in that. Travis Yonkman rounds out the top 3 on the poll and he too is a sound netminder for the Swift Current Broncos and I just saw him stone the Edmonton Oil Kings at Rexall Place this past Friday.

All deserved winners but I'm having a hard time figuring out how Torrie Jung doesn't make the grade. Hell, I could make a pretty strong argument for Jung making the Most Valuable Player to His Team category too because he is the single biggest reason the Oil Kings are in the playoff hunt and not in the cellar.

Just looking at the numbers from those 4 goalies:

1. Jones 2.10 (3rd overall)
2. Holtby 2.58 (7th overall)
3. Jung 2.61 (8th overall)
4. Yonkman 2.94 (11th overall)

1. Jones .915 (3rd)
2. Holtby .912 (5th)
3. Jung .910 (7th)
4. Yonkman .901 (12th)

Games Played
1. Jones 51
2. Holtby 59
3. Yonkman 47
4. Jung 44

Winning Percentage
1. Jones .814
2. Holtby .677
3. Yonkman .531
4. Jung .409

1. Jones 7
2. Holtby 6
3. Jung 3
4. Yonkman 2

Shots per game
1. Holtby 28.37
2. Jung 28.20
3. Yonkman 26.48
4. Jones 24.57

Position (Quality) of team in standings
1. Jones (1st)
2. Holtby (2nd)
3. Yonkman (4th)
4. Jung (8th)

What the numbers clearly show is that Jung is keeping up to the pace set by Jones and Holtby while outshining Yonkman and he's doing all of this playing behind a team far weaker than those of the other three goalies. (see winning percentage)

The stats don't show it but it's not hard to imagine that the quality of shots that Jones is facing in Calgary are probably a little easier (from the outside, fewer rebounds) than those Jung is dealing with behind the second year club in Edmonton.

Jung's season didn't start until late October with the trade from Kelowna/Lethbridge and yet he's eanred more shutouts than Yonkman.

As is pointed out, 3 teams did not reply to his poll enquiries (and shame on them for that) and all three were from the Central Division - teams which face the Oil Kings the most. I'm willing to chalk up the erroneous end results to that fact alone because nothing else makes sense.

I take nothing away from the 3 goalies that made the list but Torrie Jung deserved to be on it too, and even higher than 3rd. The Tampa Bay Lighting prospect has played well enough to deserve a contract from the NHL club but fans of the Oil Kings are hoping he returns for 2009-10 as an overage player.


Alan Caldwell said...

Just a correction - Rod Pedersen didn't compile the Best of the East poll - Wheat Kings p-b-p guy Bruce Luebke did.

Pedersen didn't make that very clear in his blog post, but if you look at the top of the post, Luebke is credited as the writer.

Guy Flaming said...

Thanks Alan, correction made