2017 NHL Draft

NHL Draft Trends: Goaltenders

Trend of drafting goalies outside of the first round expected to continue.
Steve Kournianos  |  06/06/2017 |  New York  |  

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Photo courtesy of David Klutho

New York (The Draft Analyst) — The crop of goalies for the 2017 NHL Draft is considered stronger than the last few editions. But one must wonder if touting the strength of its goaltending depth is a byproduct of the prospects’ performance or potential, as opposed to posturing by NHL general managers preparing for expansion. Expansion drafts to fans may seem like fun, but to front office types and salary cap gurus, they’re anything but. Teams can protect only one goalie, so it makes sense to create a surplus in goalie depth, especially with an additional expansion team or two on the horizon.

Historical data from entry drafts that preceded expansion years tells us we should expect an increase in goalies selected at the 2017 draft. All but one of six pre-expansion year entry drafts since 1990 — 1991, 1993, 1998, 1999 and 2000 — saw an increase in the percentage of goalies selected. For example, the record 36 goalies taken among the 286 players from the 1993 entry draft — an expansion year for Anaheim and Florida  — was a four percent increase from the total selected in 1992.

Of the 211 players drafted last year, only 18 were netminders, marking the lowest single-draft total in six years. Additionally, only two drafts since 1990 — 2007 (13) and 2009 (14) — saw less goalies taken overall. Remember, the draft was reduced from an all-time high of 293 picks over nine rounds in 2000 to the current, post-lockout limit (barring compensatory picks) of 31 selections in each of seven rounds.

Although it’s fair to deduce that a spike in the number of goalies picked is imminent, it’s a forgone conclusion that no goalie will be drafted in Top 10, with the possibility of a goaltender-less first round is just as discernable. The first goalie taken in last year’s draft — Philadelphia’s Carter Hart — wasn’t selected until the middle of the second round, marking the 11th straight year no netminder was picked within the first ten selections. Additionally, goalies went undrafted in the first round in six of the last 10 entry drafts, including three of the last four. Conversely, every draft from 1999-2005 saw at least one goalie selected within the first eight picks, including two, Rick DiPietro (2000) and Marc-Andre Fleury (2003), who went first overall.

The number of first-round netminders between 1996 and 2005 totaled 25, and another 29 were picked in Round 2. Since the 2005 lockout, however, the number of goalies taken within the first 30 picks has more than halved, with only 11 going in the first round between 2006-2016 and not one being selected in the top 10.

While it’s easy to point to the post-lockout reduction in draft slots as the biggest reason for the decrease in netminders getting their names called on Draft Day, another explanation why none are getting picked within the lottery could be that you don’t need a goalie who was a high draft pick in order to get to the Stanley Cup Final

It’s already been proven that using a high draft pick on a goalie does not necessarily translate into regular or postseason success. The current Stanley Cup Final, for example, features Pittsburgh Penguins backstop Matt Murray, who was drafted in the 3rd round in 2012,  against 2004 8th rounder Pekka Rinne. This marks the fifth straight year in which neither of the last two goalies standing were first round picks. Furthermore, of the 27 Vezina Trophy finalists since 2009, only six were first round picks.

While the 2017 draft offers solid goaltending blue-chippers like Boston University’s Jake Oettinger and Windsor’s Michael DiPietro, it’s more likely than not that both will have to wait until either the later stages of the first round, or the second day of the draft before finally hearing their names called.

Draft Position of Goalies in the Stanley Cup Final (2003-2016)

SCF Winning Goalie Drafted Losing Goalie Drafted
2016 Matt Murray 3rd Martin Jones Undrafted
2015 Corey Crawford 2nd Ben Bishop 3rd
2014 Jonathan Quick 3rd Henrik Lundqvist 7th
2013 Corey Crawford 2nd Tukka Rask 2nd
2012 Jonathan Quick 3rd Martin Brodeur 1st
2011 Tim Thomas 9th Roberto Luongo 1st
2010 Antti Niemi Undrafted Michael Leighton 6th
2009 Marc-Andre Fleury 1st Chris Osgood 3rd
2008 Chris Osgood 3rd Marc-Andre Fleury 1st
2007 J.S. Giguere 1st Ray Emery 4th
2006 Cam Ward 1st Dwayne Roloson Undrafted
2004 Nikolai Khabibulin 9th Miikka Kiprusoff 6th
2003 Martin Brodeur 1st J.S. Giguere 1st

Draft Position of Vezina Finalists (2009-2017)

Award Year Vezina Finalists Draft Round
2009 Tim Thomas  9th
2009 Steve Mason  3rd
2009 Niklas Backstrom  Undrafted
2010 Ryan Miller  5th
2010 Ilya Bryzgalov  2nd
2010 Martin Brodeur  1st
2011 Tim Thomas  9th
2011 Pekka Rinne  8th
2011 Roberto Luongo  1st
2012 Henrik Lundqvist  7th
2012 Jonathan Quick  3rd
2012 Pekka Rinne  8th
2013 Sergei Bobrovsky  Undrafted
2013 Henrik Lundqvist  7th
2013 Antti Niemi  Undrafted
2014 Tuukka Rask  2nd
2014 Semyon Varlamov  1st
2014 Ben Bishop  3rd
2015 Carey Price  1st
2015 Pekka Rinne  8th
2015 Devan Dubnyk  1st
2016 Braden Holtby  4th
2016 Ben Bishop  3rd
2016 Jonathan Quick  3rd
2017 Sergei Bobrovsky  Undrafted
2017 Braden Holtby  4th
2017 Carey Price  1st

Year-by-Year Goalie Breakdown (1990-2016)

Draft Goalies Taken Highest OA Busiest Round Total Drafted Pct
2016 18 48th 6TH (5) 18/211 9%
2015 24 22nd 7TH (8) 24/211 11%
2014 21 34th 4TH (6) 21/210 10%
2013 21 36th 2ND/4TH/6TH (4) 21/211 10%
2012 24 19th 3RD (7) 24/211 11%
2011 19 38th 6TH (7TH) 19/211 9%
2010 14 11th 4TH/5TH (4) 14/210 7%
2009 21 31st 6TH (6) 21/211 10%
2008 23 18th 2ND/6TH/7TH (4) 23/211 11%
2007 13 36th 2ND (4) 13/211 6%
2006 26 11th 5TH (7) 26/213 12%
2005 23 5th 5TH (6) 23/230 10%
2004 33 6th 8th (6) 33/291 11.3%
2003 29 1st 6th (5) 29/292 10%
2002 33 2nd 5th (9) 33/291 11.3%
2001 34 8th 5th (7) 34/289 12%
2000 32 1st 8th (5) 32/293 11%
1999 30 6th 3rd (7th) 30/272 11%
1998 23 14th 3rd/4th (4) 23/258 9%
1997 19 4th 1st/5th/8th (3) 19/246 8%
1996 23 23rd 6th (7) 23/241 10%
1995 27 13th 5th/9th (5) 27/234 12%
1994 30 7th 9th (9) 30/286 10%
1993 36 10th 10th (7) 36/286 13%
1992 23 32nd 11th (5) 23/264 9%
1991 29 34th 5th (7) 29/264 11%
1990 21 11th 5th (4) 21/252 8%

Goalies draft trends by team in Rounds 1-3 (2006-2016)

Team Total 1st Round 2nd Round 3rd Round
PHI 12 0 2 4
COL 11 0 3 1
NSH 11 1 2 0
ARI 10 1 2 3
WPG 9 0 1 0
EDM 9 0 0 1
NYI 9 0 1 3
STL 9 0 2 1
TB 9 2 0 1
CHI 8 0 1 2
DAL 8 1 2 0
MIN 8 0 0 1
WSH 8 2 2 0
ANA 7 0 1 3
BUF 7 0 1 1
CAR 7 0 1 2
CBJ 7 0 1 3
DET 7 1 0 2
FLA 7 0 1 1
NYR 7 0 2 0
PIT 7 0 2 1
CGY 6 1 2 1
OTT 6 0 1 2
SJS 6 0 0 3
TOR 5 0 0 1
BOS 4 1 0 2
NJD 4 0 1 1
VAN 4 0 1 1

Goalie Draft Register by Team (2006-2016)

Round Overall Team Pos Player Draft Year Goalie Taken
5 134 CAR G Jeremy Helvig 2016 13
3 75 CAR G Jack Lafontaine 2016 6
6 155 CBJ G Peter Thome 2016 14
2 54 CGY G Tyler Parsons 2016 2
3 83 CHI G Wouter Peeters 2016 7
5 131 COL G Adam Werner 2016 12
5 128 DAL G Colton Point 2016 11
6 167 DET G Filip Larsson 2016 16
5 123 EDM G Dylan Wells 2016 10
4 105 NJD G Evan Cormier 2016 9
6 168 NSH G Konstantin Volkov 2016 17
6 174 NYR G Tyler Wall 2016 18
2 48 PHI G Carter Hart 2016 1
2 55 PIT G Filip Gustavsson 2016 3
2 59 STL G Evan Fitzpatrick 2016 4
3 88 TB G Connor Ingram 2016 8
3 62 TOR G Joseph Woll 2016 5
6 157 WPG G Mikhail Berdin 2016 15
6 179 ANA G Garrett Metcalf 2015 16
3 76 ARI G Adin Hill 2015 5
7 183 ARI G Erik Kallgren 2015 17
3 75 BOS G Daniel Vladar 2015 4
4 93 CAR G Callum Booth 2015 9
6 163 DAL G Markus Ruusu 2015 15
4 110 DET G Joren Van Pottelberghe 2015 10
7 208 EDM G Miroslav Svoboda 2015 24
3 77 FLA G Samuel Montembeault 2015 6
7 206 FLA G Ryan Bednard 2015 23
4 111 MIN G Ales Stezka 2015 11
2 42 NJD G Mackenzie Blackwood 2015 2
5 145 NSH G Karel Vejmelka 2015 12
7 205 NSH G Evan Smith 2015 22
7 184 NYR G Adam Huska 2015 18
7 199 OTT G Joel Daccord 2015 21
3 70 PHI G Felix Sandstrom 2015 3
3 90 PHI G Matej Tomek 2015 8
7 188 PHI G Ivan Fedotov 2015 19
3 86 SJS G Mike Robinson 2015 7
7 193 SJS G Jake Kupsky 2015 20
5 146 STL G Luke Opilka 2015 13
6 153 TB G Kris Oldham 2015 14
1 22 WSH G Ilya Samsonov 2015 1
3 61 BUF G Jonas Johansson 2014 6
2 37 CAR G Alex Nedeljkovic 2014 3
3 76 CBJ G Elvis Merzlikins 2014 7
2 34 CGY G Mason Mcdonald 2014 1
6 179 CHI G Ivan Nalimov 2014 19
6 174 COL G Maximilian Pajpach 2014 17
4 115 DAL G Brent Moran 2014 13
5 136 DET G Chase Perry 2014 15
4 111 EDM G Zachary Nagelvoort 2014 12
7 183 EDM G Keven Bouchard 2014 21
7 182 FLA G Hugo Fagerblom 2014 20
5 150 LAK G Alec Dillon 2014 16
4 109 MIN G Kaapo Kahkonen 2014 11
6 177 MTL G Hayden Hawkey 2014 18
3 78 NYI G Ilya Sorokin 2014 8
4 95 NYI G Linus Soderstrom 2014 10
2 59 NYR G Brandon Halverson 2014 5
4 118 NYR G Igor Shesterkin 2014 14
4 94 STL G Ville Husso 2014 9
2 36 VAN G Thatcher Demko 2014 2
2 39 WSH G Vitek Vanecek 2014 4
6 163 ARI G Brendan Burke 2013 16
5 129 BUF G Cal Petersen 2013 13
3 63 COL G Spencer Martin 2013 5
2 54 DAL G Philippe Desrosiers 2013 3
4 92 FLA G Evan Cowley 2013 8
5 146 LAK G Patrik Bartosak 2013 14
7 200 MIN G Alexandre Belanger 2013 19
2 36 MTL G Zachary Fucale 2013 1
7 208 NJD G Anthony Brodeur 2013 21
4 99 NSH G Juuse Saros 2013 9
7 203 NSH G Janne Juvonen 2013 20
3 70 NYI G Eamon Mcadam 2013 6
4 106 NYI G Stephon Williams 2013 10
6 170 NYR G Mackenzie Skapski 2013 17
3 78 OTT G Marcus Hogberg 2013 7
6 162 PHI G Merrick Madsen 2013 15
2 44 PIT G Tristan Jarry 2013 2
4 117 SJS G Fredrik Bergvik 2013 11
5 124 TB G Kristers Gudlevskis 2013 12
6 172 TOR G Antoine Bibeau 2013 18
2 59 WPG G Eric Comrie 2013 4
3 87 ANA G Frederik Andersen 2012 11
7 184 ARI G Marek Langhamer 2012 20
1 24 BOS G Malcolm Subban 2012 2
6 163 BUF G Linus Ullmark 2012 17
3 69 CAR G Daniel Altshuller 2012 6
6 159 CAR G Collin Olson 2012 16
2 31 CBJ G Oscar Dansk 2012 3
3 62 CBJ G Joonas Korpisalo 2012 5
3 75 CGY G Jon Gillies 2012 7
7 191 CHI G Brandon Whitney 2012 22
7 199 CHI G Matt Tomkins 2012 23
5 144 DAL G Henri Kiviaho 2012 14
3 80 DET G Jake Paterson 2012 9
6 179 NSH G Marek Mazanec 2012 19
3 76 OTT G Chris Driedger 2012 8
6 166 OTT G Francois Brassard 2012 18
2 45 PHI G Anthony Stolarz 2012 4
3 83 PIT G Matthew Murray 2012 10
4 113 PIT G Sean Maguire 2012 12
5 146 STL G Francois Tremblay 2012 15
1 19 TB G Andrei Vasilevskiy 2012 1
5 130 WPG G Connor Hellebuyck 2012 13
7 190 WPG G Jamie Phillips 2012 21
7 203 WSH G Sergey Kostenko 2012 24
2 39 ANA G John Gibson 2011 2
6 181 BOS G Lars Volden 2011 15
6 167 BUF G Nathan Lieuwen 2011 13
6 163 CAR G Matt Mahalak 2011 11
7 188 CBJ G Anton Forsberg 2011 17
6 164 CGY G Laurent Brossoit 2011 12
7 211 CHI G Johan Mattsson 2011 19
3 62 EDM G Samu Perhonen 2011 4
7 182 EDM G Frans Tuohimaa 2011 16
2 49 LAK G Christopher Gibson 2011 3
6 161 MIN G Stephen Michalek 2011 10
2 38 NSH G Magnus Hellberg 2011 1
3 88 STL G Jordan Binnington 2011 6
5 132 STL G Niklas Lundstrom 2011 8
6 178 TB G Adam Wilcox 2011 14
7 190 TOR G Garret Sparks 2011 18
3 71 VAN G David Honzik 2011 5
6 157 WPG G Jason Kasdorf 2011 9
4 117 WSH G Steffen Soberg 2011 7
1 27 ARI G Mark Visentin 2010 2
5 138 ARI G Louis Boileau-Domingue 2010 12
4 102 CBJ G Mathieu Corbeil-Theriault 2010 7
2 58 CHI G Kent Simpson 2010 4
2 49 COL G Calvin Pickard 2010 3
4 107 COL G Sami Aittokallio 2010 8
1 11 DAL G Jack Campbell 2010 1
5 141 DET G Petr Mrazek 2010 13
5 121 EDM G Tyler Bunz 2010 10
4 92 FLA G Sam Brittain 2010 6
6 159 MIN G Johan Gustafsson 2010 14
3 84 NJD G Scott Wedgewood 2010 5
5 128 WPG G Fredrik Pettersson-Wentzel 2010 11
4 112 WSH G Phillipp Grubauer 2010 9
3 76 ANA G Igor Bobkov 2009 4
3 91 ARI G Mike Lee 2009 7
6 164 BUF G Connor Knapp 2009 18
6 171 CGY G Joni Ortio 2009 19
5 124 COL G Kieran Millan 2009 10
6 154 COL G Brandon Maxwell 2009 15
5 133 EDM G Olivier Roy 2009 11
4 95 LAK G Jean-Francois Berube 2009 8
3 77 MIN G Matt Hackett 2009 5
6 161 MIN G Darcy Kuemper 2009 16
7 211 MTL G Petteri Simila 2009 21
2 31 NYI G Mikko Koskinen 2009 1
3 62 NYI G Anders Nilsson 2009 3
5 140 NYR G Scott Stajcer 2009 12
2 46 OTT G Robin Lehner 2009 2
3 81 PHI G Adam Morrison 2009 6
5 142 PHI G Nicola Riopel 2009 13
5 148 TB G Michael Zador 2009 14
6 162 TB G Jaroslav Janus 2009 17
6 173 VAN G Joe Cannata 2009 20
4 117 WPG G Edward Pasquale 2009 9
3 83 ANA G Marco Cousineau 2008 8
3 77 BOS G Michael Hutchinson 2008 7
6 165 CAR G Mike Murphy 2008 18
2 61 COL G Peter Delmas 2008 6
2 59 DAL G Tyler Beskorowany 2008 5
1 30 DET G Tom Mccollum 2008 2
2 31 FLA G Jacob Markstrom 2008 3
4 116 MTL G Jason Missiaen 2008 12
1 18 NSH G Chet Pickard 2008 1
7 207 NSH G Anders Lindback 2008 23
5 126 NYI G Kevin Poulin 2008 14
3 84 PHI G Jacob Deserres 2008 9
7 196 PHI G Joacim Eriksson 2008 22
5 150 PIT G Alexander Pechurskiy 2008 15
6 180 PIT G Patrick Killeen 2008 19
4 106 SJS G Harri Sateri 2008 11
2 34 STL G Jake Allen 2008 4
7 185 STL G Paul Karpowich 2008 20
5 122 TB G Dustin Tokarski 2008 13
6 158 TOR G Grant Rollheiser 2008 17
7 191 VAN G Morgan Clark 2008 21
6 154 WPG G Christopher Carrozzi 2008 16
4 93 WSH G Braden Holtby 2008 10
4 98 ANA G Sebastian Stefaniszin 2007 8
4 121 ANA G Mattias Modig 2007 10
2 36 ARI G Joel Gistedt 2007 1
6 153 ARI G Scott Darling 2007 13
5 139 BUF G Bradley Eidsness 2007 12
3 86 CHI G Josh Unice 2007 6
2 49 COL G Trevor Cann 2007 3
4 113 COL G Kent Patterson 2007 9
5 124 LAK G Linden Rowat 2007 11
2 54 NSH G Jeremy Smith 2007 4
2 48 NYR G Antoine Lafleur 2007 2
3 83 SJS G Timo Pielmeier 2007 5
3 91 SJS G Tyson Sexsmith 2007 7
5 130 ARI G Brett Bennett 2006 17
2 46 BUF G Jhonas Enroth 2006 6
3 69 CBJ G Steve Mason 2006 7
1 26 CGY G Leland Irving 2006 4
4 96 CHI G Joe Palmer 2006 10
7 201 COL G Billy Sauer 2006 26
4 120 DAL G Richard Bachman 2006 15
3 92 DET G Daniel Larsson 2006 9
5 133 EDM G Bryan Pitton 2006 19
7 193 FLA G Marc Cheverie 2006 25
1 11 LAK G Jonathan Bernier 2006 1
3 74 LAK G Jeff Zatkoff 2006 8
5 132 MIN G Niko Hovinen 2006 18
5 146 NSH G Mark Dekanich 2006 21
4 108 NYI G Jase Weslosky 2006 13
6 173 NYI G Stefan Ridderwall 2006 23
5 151 OTT G Ryan Daniels 2006 22
4 109 PHI G Jakub Kovar 2006 14
6 175 PHI G Michael Dupont 2006 24
5 125 PIT G Chad Johnson 2006 16
4 106 STL G Reto Berra 2006 12
1 15 TB G Riku Helenius 2006 2
4 99 TOR G James Reimer 2006 11
5 135 WPG G Alex Kangas 2006 20
1 23 WSH G Semyon Varlamov 2006 3
2 34 WSH G Michal Neuvirth 2006 5