NHL Positional Rankings: Ranking the league's top 10 goalies
The question of which goaltender is No. 1 across the league could be an argument-starter for the entire regular season given the way things are going.
Tuukka Rask gets the top honors out of the gate given the way he’s played this season, and the chances of him sustaining it over the course of a full regular season given his situation in Boston. His .928 save percentage is tied for fifth in the NHL and the 2.18 goals against average is top-5 as well, and that’s despite a slump at the start of November.
Other goaltenders like Darcy Kuemper and Robin Lehner have better netminders at this exact point in time and are included in the top-10 as well, and could jump significantly up the list if it looks this way again come December. But let’s give these other goalies some time to prove they can sustain it with the Coyotes and Blackhawks respectively and then we’ll see how the list stacks up with a few months gone in the season.
The numbers do prove one thing: There are a lot of quality goaltenders in the NHL right now and many of them aren’t the same old household goaltender names that you're used to.
10. Connor Hellebuyck
The Jets netminder is up near the top of the NHL with his .928 save percentage and once again has been a source of strength in Winnipeg. He’s been scored on in two of his four shootout save attempts, but why dwell on the little things?
9. Marc-Andre Fleury
The Flower is a bit of a victim to a suspect defense in Vegas to this point this season, but the 11-6-2 record and the .919 save percentage tell the story that he’s getting the job done.
8. Mikko Koskinen
A real surprise on this list, Koskinen has been solid for the Oilers with a sterling 9-1-2 record to go along with a 2.45 goals against average and a .920 save percentage.
7. Jordan Binnington
Last season’s success story for the Blues hasn’t been the same kind of big time stopper this season, but he’s been good with 11 wins, a 2.23 goals against average and a .926 save percentage in 19 games.
6. Matt Murray
In the workhorse division, Murray has played 18 games to this point for the Penguins with a 2.60 goals against average. If we’re being honest, though, the .907 save percentage could use a little work.
5. Robin Lehner
The Blackhawks netminder is quickly seizing control of the Chicago goaltending situation with the way he’s played. The 5-4-3 record isn’t great, but the .938 save percentage is the league’s best to this point.
4. Thomas Greiss
He’s not a big name, but he’s done some excellent work for the Islanders over the last couple of seasons. The 9-2-0 record, 2.15 goals against average and .930 save percentage speak for themselves.
3. Ben Bishop
The Stars have had a lot of issues early in the year before hitting a hot streak, but big Ben Bishop isn’t one of them. The 9-5-1 record isn’t great, but the 2.24 goals against average and .926 save percentage are solid.
2. Darcy Kuemper
If we base it purely on numbers, Kuemper is tops with a 1.98 goals against average and .934 save percentage for the Coyotes. We’ll need to see it a little bit deeper into the season before we say he’s the NHL’s best.
1. Tuukka Rask
Sure, he hit a little bit of a slump at the start of November, but Rask is an established No. 1 with an 11-2-2 record out of the gate along with a 2.18 goals against average and .928 save percentage. Those would be his best regular season numbers in years if he can keep it up.