In Ken Dryden’s whimsical, engaging and hilarious book “The Game” he talks about the life of a pro hockey player and gives it a phrase: hurry up and wait. Hurry up after the game, because there’s a new town ahead. Wait, because after packing up and flying out, there’s the hotel, a night’s sleep and then waking up to realize there’s no game until tomorrow.
Jeff Drouin Deslauriers has been in pro hockey for years now and for most of it he’s been an orphan. The Oilers had no minor league team, and then when he finally made the grade they had too many goalies. For JDD, “hurry up and wait” became “wait and wait and wait” but it looks like the spotlight will finally shine on him this season.
The Oilers don’t have a safety net in 2009-10.
- Boxcars: 10gp, 3.33
- SP: .901
- WLT: 4-3-0
- SP behind starter: .014
- Cap hit (capgeek): $.625M
- What do these numbers tell us? Not a lot, there aren’t enough at-bats to draw a conclusion. He wasn’t awful (he was better than Curtis McElhinney a year ago) but his hold on an NHL job isn’t strong based on the numbers.
- How could these numbers change this season? He’ll play more and the major questions for Oilers fans have to do with Khabibulin’s health and JDD’s ability to pick up the slack. The temptation should be very strong for Quinn to play his veteran but that might hurry an injury. It’s less than ideal, which is pretty much par for the course when it comes to the Oilers and how they use Jeff Deslauriers.
- What about injury? Health doesn’t seem to be a problem. Ever.
- What about a trade? He might be dealt along with a prospect or pick for an experienced goalie (say at the deadline) but the Oilers seem devoted to JDD.
- What about Frederic Chabot? The new goalie coach had an NHL career 32 games in length, one hopes he can help JDD get beyond that number.
- How important is Deslauriers to the Oilers? Well they like him a ton, always have. I don’t know (and we’ve discussed it) that there is any proof Deslauriers will be even average as an NHL player (Tyler has a few lengthy items on the subject at his site). But at least we’re about to find out. Amazing stat: he already ranks 7th in NHL games played among over 30 goalies selected by the Oilers in the Entry draft.
Predictions Past 2008-09
- Predicted: 10gp, 3.50 .887
- Actual: 10gp, 3.33 .901
Prediction for 2009-10: 27gp, 3.19 .898