Fantasy Hockey: Ranking The Top 40 Goalies

Goalies play a special part in fantasy hockey. Standard leagues play with two goalies, and usually have an impact on 4 of the 10 points in a weekly head to head league. Goalies are valuable, and it’s hard to come by consistency in goalies, both in playing time, and in the numbers. Having a solid goaltending group on your fantasy team is key to winning the championship, but you have to make sure to not grab too many too fast and lack in the offensive department.

Some goalies are worth reaching for in the first few rounds, but it’s always a gamble. I also don’t like taking goalies on teams that the starter is in question; Philadelphia, Ray Emery and Steve Mason, New Jersey, Cory Schneider and Martin Brodeur, etc. So who are the safe bets this season? Who isn’t worth jumping up for, and who is? Who’s going to disappoint, and who’s going to stun?

Here are my top 40 goalies for this season, and like the forward rankings I did, I will dive into the top 10 and list the rest.

  1. Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers: Lundqvist has been consistently good for so long that it’s hard to not rank him at the top of any list that involves ranking goaltenders. Lundqvist is going to start a large hand full of games, and get a good number of wins without giving up many goals. His goals against avera was 1.98 in 2012, and he followed it up with a 2.05 goals against average this last season. His knack for shutouts is always a healthy benifit as well.
  2. Tuukka Rask, Boston Bruins: Tuukka showed last season that he is ready to lead this Bruins team, the only question is how mucho of the load can he take? Durability didn’t seem ot be an issue last season, but it was his first season getting regular starts. He has the ability to put up good fantasy numbers night in and night out, and he has the team in front of him to make those numbers look even better than they should.
  3. Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles Kings: Quick didn’t have a stellar regular season by any means this season, but don’t count him out just yet. Remember, he was coming off of off-season back surgery. He played well later in the season, and exceptionally in the playoffs. I expect Quick to be back on his game this season, and I would say he’s probably the last safe bet to take earlier in the draft.
  4. Sergei Bobrovsky,Columbus Blue Jackets: I believe in Sergei Bobrovsky, and you should too. There was no fluke last season when he put up a 2.00 goals against average on a less than average Blue Jackets team. he nearly carried the team to the playoffs by himself. Bobrovsky will get a large number of starts since the Jackets don’t really have a back up goalie, so expect him to start a ton of games this season. The only question with bob is, will he be able to carry the Jackets work load or will he wear down? And this is where it starts to get sketchy.
  5. Pekka Rinne, Nashville Predators: Rinne is one of the league’s best goalies, and he’s being paid for it. And so is Ryan Suter… In Minnesota. Rinne’s numbers dropped bad last season in Suter’s absence, but fear not, Rinne gets a large amount of work in Nashville and I expect the Predators to do a bit better this season with the off-season additions they made. Rinne’s numbers may not be spectacular, but he’s going to get a lot of ice time, and he’s going to be consistent.
  6. Jimmy Howard, Detroit Red Wings: Howard is a work horse, and with an injury prone Jonas Gustavsson backing him up, it makes it that much easier to feel safe taking Howard. Howard proved last season that he’s able to carry a team on his own. The Lidstrom-less Red Wings defense was shaky to say the least for the better part of the season, and Howard still escaped with a goals against average of 2.13,  a save percentage of .923%, 21 wins, and 5 shutouts.
  7. Craig Anderson, Ottawa Senators: Anderson was well on his way to a Vezina Trophy when his injury hit him last season. Anderson was holding onto a goals against average of 1.69 by the end of the season. He only played in 24 games due to injuries. What’s even more impressive, Anderson’s .941% save percentage was done with a banged up Senators team in front of him. We’ll have to wait and see what’s in store for Anderson’s season, but if you aren’t too worried about the injury problem, he could wind up being a great pick.
  8. Roberto Luongo, Vancouver Canucks: I write this assuming that Luongo will be kissing and making up with the Canucks organization, or at least staying in Vancouver. With Schneider out of the picture now, the Vancouver goal is awaiting Luongo’s full attention. Luongo is still a more than capable goalie, he’s got a good team in nfront of him, and a new coach to turn things around in Vancouver. Luongo should see the ice plenty this season, and I expect him to come out and make a statement in net this season.
  9. Antti Niemi, San Jose Sharks: Antti Niemi is a brick house in goal for San Jose. Niemi started in 43 games last season and racked up 24 wins with a save percentage of .924%. Niemi is a solid bet, and at the right time in the draft, Niemi will be a steal. The Sharks still lack a solid back up, so expect Niemi to get a lot of time in net this season, and if he can back up his Vezina nominating season from last season.
  10. Corey Crawford, Chicago Blackhawks: The Blackhawks lost Ray Emery to the Flyers in free agency and replace him with 40 year old Nikolai Khabibulin. Crawford is likely to see the net often this season with Emery gone, and if he can continue to put up numbers like he did last season witha bigger role in net, then the Hawks are going to have themselves another dominant season. Crawford is a solid bet for wins, and he can squeeze out the shutouts on occasion, with a consistently solid save percentage.
  11. Jonas HillerAnaheim Ducks
  12. Marc-Andre Fleury, Pittsburgh Penguins
  13. Mike Smith, Phoenix Coyotes
  14. Braden Holtby, Washington Capitals
  15. Carey Price, Montreal Canadiens
  16. Jarolsav Halak, St. Louis Blues
  17. Evgeni Nabokov, New York Islanders
  18. Ryan Miller, Buffalo Sabres
  19. Cory Schneider, New Jersey Devils
  20. Niklas Backstrom, Minnesota Wild
  21. Cam Ward, Carolina Hurricanes
  22. Devan Dubnyk, Edmonton Oilers
  23. Kari Lehtonen, Dallas Stars
  24. James Reimer, Toronto Maple Leafs
  25. Viktor Fasth, Anaheim Ducks
  26. Ray Emery, Philadelphia Flyers
  27. Ondrej Pavelec, Winnipeg Jets
  28. Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils
  29. Brian Elliot, St. Louis Blues
  30. Semyon Varlamov, Colorado Avalance
  31. Ben Bishop, Tampa Bay Lightning
  32. Jonathan Bernier, Toronto Maple Leafs
  33. Jacob Markstrom, Florida Panthers
  34. Tomas Vokoun, Pittsburgh Penguins
  35. Steve Mason, Philadelphia Flyers
  36. Robin Lehner, Ottawa Senators
  37. Jean-Sebastien Giguere, Colorado Avalance
  38. Nikolai Khabibulin, Chicago Blackhawks
  39. Jhonas Enroth, Buffalo Sabres
  40. Jake Allen, St. Louis Blues

Tags: Antti Niemi Corey Crawford Craig Anderson Fantasy Hockey Henrik Lundqvist Jimmy Howard Jonathan Quick Pekka Rinne Roberto Luongo Sergei Bobrovsky Tuukka Rask

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