On my old blog, I did this for Washington Capitals goalies Michal Neuvirth and Semyon Varlamov and was planning on doing every goalie in the Southeast Division. I figured that I should continue this project here and I will start with Carolina's netminder, Cam Ward. He has been the starting goaltender for the Hurricanes for the last ever since the 2006 Stanley Cup Playoffs where he won the job from Martin Gerber and helped the Canes win their first Stanley Cup. Aside from the 2009-10 season when he was hurt, he has started in 60 or more games in every year, has had his save percentage slowly improve and was rewarded with a six-year contract extension worth $37.8 million which began this season. How did he respond to this? He started in more games than he ever has before (74), saw more shots than any other goalie in the NHL (2,375, closest was Carey Price with 2,147 shots faced) and posted the best save percentage of his career (.923). I am not the biggest fan of his contract because a long-term deal with a cap hit of over $6 mil is something you only give to elite goalies and I don't think Ward is in that calss yet but the good news is that he appears to be improving every season and proved to be very durable this past season and put up solid numbers while doing so. After the jump, we will take a closer look at Ward's 2010-11 season.
After missing a good chunk of the 2009-10 season with a leg injury, Ward really had his durability tested this season starting in 74 games (including 16 back-to-backs) and seeing an average of approximately 32 shots per game. Despite this huge workload, he had a robust save percentage of .923 and an even better even strength save percentage of .926. These numbers suggest that Ward was consistently good all season and is capable of doing this again next year. His monthly stats tell a different story:
|Month||Record||GAA||SV%||SO||EV SV%||PK SV%||PP SV%|
Ward was consistent for the first two months, had a fantastic December but he definitely hit a rough patch in the middle of the season, most notably in January whre his save percentage went below .900 for the only time. One could say that's when his huge workload began to catch up with him and that is very possible as he gave up three or more goals eight times in the month and was even pulled from a start 11 minutes into the game (the 7-0 beatdown against Boston). Fortunately for the Canes, the offense bailed Ward out plenty of times in January as they gave up 3.25 goals per game to support him that month. February was a different story as Ward was very pedestrian at even strength and the offense wasn't giving him much support at all (only 2.58 goals per game). After that rough patch, Ward appeared to turn things around and play some of his best hockey of the season in March and April as the Canes made their run for the playoffs which they unfortunately came up just short in. If he had been just a little better on the penalty kill, then March would have been Ward's best month this season because he was dominant at even strength. When looking at his monthly stats, it's hard for me to say that Ward was consistent year-round because he did show some fatigue int he middle of the season. I am not saying he is a streaky goaltender but you can tell that he definitely goes through some strong and weak stretches which is what you would expect with a goalie who played in so many games this season. The most promising thing here is that it appears Ward played his best when the Canes needed him to, which were the last two months of the season. However, Ward playing in so many games and showing fatigue in the middle part of the season does show that Carolina needed a legitamate back-up (or someone who is better than Justin Peters) which is why they signed Brian Boucher this off-season.
Here we are going to take a look at which area of the rink Ward's shots came from to get an idea of how much he was standing on his head this year. For instance, if a goalie faces say 2000 shots in a seaosn and over half of them are from past the face-off circle or from a sharp angle, then he's not being tested as much as a goalie who has to see most of the shots he face come from the slot or the crease area right in front of him. For this section, I divide the rink into three sections; the first one is 1'-19' in front of the net which is about from the crease area to the front of the slot and face-off circles. Next is 20'-39' away from the net which are mainly shots from the slot area or from inside the face-off circle and the last section are shots from 40' away or more, which is where a lot of shots tend to come from and are stopped more than others. Here's how the breakdown looked for Ward:
As you could probably guess, Ward struggled the most with shots that were from close range (every goalie I've done this for had similar results) but was very good from mid and long range. Evem in Ward's best months he struggled with shots that came from close range and the Canes appaeared to give up A LOT of them in some months (March and February in particular). Some of these were from rebounds, others were from shots that were tipped or the defense letting the goal-scorer get to the net untouched. Ward's monthly performances that I posted earlier seem to reflect this chart, as well. Ward didn't play that well in Janurary and February and he had some pretty bad save percentages from mid-range shots in both of those months as well. He followed it by having a strong month of March and stopped every shot from mid-range that was thrown at him but still had a poor save percentage from shots at close range. This whole project is a work in progress for me, but I am trying to figure out what the league average is for save percentage on shots from close range to see where goalies like Ward stand. I have yet to analyze an elite goalie yet but it would be interesting to see what Tim Thomas or Roberto Luongo's save percentage is against close range shots. Ward's overall save percentage on close range shots is somewhat better than some of the other goalies I have analyzed, for the record.
Zones/Good and Bad Goals:
To get a better idea of what Ward's strengths and weaknesses were this season, let's take a look at where Ward gave up his goals and then see if they were "good" or "bad." A good goal is one that he couldn't do anything about whether it was from bad defense, a tip-in or a great shot and a bad goal is one that Ward should have stopped. A soft wrister from a long way away or a shot from a horrible angle somehow sneaking through the goalie are examples of "bad" goals. There are some goals which fall under the category of "suspect" where you could make a case for either side. A shot where the goaltender gives up a shaky rebound that isn't cleared is one example of that.
Ward gave up more goals glove side than anything else this season. He appeared to be extremeley vulnerable high glove and that applied to just about all areas of the ice, whether it was from a long point shot or one off a rebound in front. The same thing applies to shots that beat him low glove and by his left leg pad. However, a lot of these were from him attempting to make a desperation save because he was out of position or screened in front. There were definitely a lot of times where he had to sprawl to make saves and sometimes he was successful. A strong part of his game is that while he gave up a lot of rebounds, he didn't appear to give up that many garbage goals from the crease area and stayed strong on shots that tried to beat him five-hole and blocker-side. He was especially good at making high blocker saves.
1. Open shot from the slot by Guillaume Latendresse beats Ward five-hole.
2. 5-on-4. Failed clear gives Martin Havlat an open chance in front of net, Ward makes the save and surrenders a huge rebound into the slot that is put home by Matt Cullen. Suspect.
3. 5-on-4. Shot from point by Brent Burns beats Ward five-hole. Huge screen in front by Andrew Brunette.
4. 5-on-4. Ward makes the first save on Mikko Koivu and the rebound is put in by an uncovered Andrew Brunette who was standing almost next o the crease.
5. Long wrist shot by Mike Fisher is stopped by Ward but the rebound takes a weird bounce up in the air and lands in the net.
6. Milan Michalek is able to get to the front of the net and makes a move on Ward, which he tries to poke-check away but is unsuccessful and Michalek puts the puck right through Ward's five-hole.
7. Shot by Mike Fisher from deep in the slot beats Ward high blocker side. Open shot with no screen in front. Bad.
8. Shot by Andrew Alberts is blocked in front by Tom Kostopolous but he gets to the rebound and beats Ward's right pad with a back hander.
9. 5-on-4. Ward makes a stop on Mikeal Samuelsson and decides to play the puck and turns it over to Jeff Tambellini who makes a centering pass to Mason Raymond who beats Ward glove side with a slap shot from the slot. Suspect.
10. Tanner Glass sends a cross-ice pass to Mikeal Samuelsson who beats Ward high-glove on a one-timer.
11. Mason Raymond scores off a centering pass by Daniel Sedin and beats Ward low glove side.
12. 5-on-4. Ryan Kesler scores on a one-timer that beats Ward high-glove.
13. Deflection. Open snap shot by Dan Boyle goes off Patrick Marleau in front of the net and beats Ward. Ward was aggressive on the play to challenge the shot by Boyle.
14. 5-on-4. Patrick Marleau beats Ward top-shelf on a wrist shot after he hugged the post a bit too early. Suspect.
15. Wrist shot by Kyle Turris from slightly inside the face-off circle beats Ward low glove. There was a little traffic in front of the net.
16. Ward gives up a huge rebound off a shot by Oliver Ekman-Larsson and the rebound is put in by Kyle Turris. Suspect.
17. Ward goes behind his net to play the puck but has it taken away by Kyle Turris who finds Scottie Upshall in front of the net and he scores before Ward can get back to his crease in time. Bad.
18. David Steckel crashes the net and knocks Ward down (he was barely out of his crease). The puck is lose long enough for Matt Henrdricks to score on what is basically an open net.
19. Ward makes the save on a shot by Mike Knubla, gives up a huge rebound that is put home by Nicklas Backstrom. Bad.
20. Deflection. Shot by Michal Rozsival goes off Artem Anisimov and Ryan Callahan's sticks and bounces into the net.
21. 5-on-4. Open shot from inside the face-off circle by Mark Staal beats Ward high stick side.
22. Snap shot by Brandon Dubinsky from inside the face-off circle beats Ward high stick side. Not a bad goal but Ward's reaction time was late.
23. Soft back-hander by Pascal Dupuis beats Ward after the puck went off Joni Pitkanen's stick.
24. 2-on-1. Max Talbot receives a cross-crease pass from Arron Asham and beats Ward short-side. Looked like Ward sprawled to make the save when he didn't need to. Suspect.
25. Wrist shot from a slight angle by Pascal Dupuis beats Ward five-hole. Ward didn't look good but the defense certainly didn't help him on this play.
1. Open shot from the slot by Michael Grabner beats Ward high blocker side. Ward was hugging the post after Doug Weight drove the puck to the net but a quick pass and poor back-checking fooled him.
2. 5-on-4. Wrist shot by PA Parenteau beats Ward low stick side. Essentially the same play as the last goal only Blake Comeau went around the net to deliver the pass and there was some traffic in front.
3. David Booth drives the net and Ward makes the initial save on him but no one picks up the lose puck which Booth eventually shovels in.
4. 2-on-1. Michal Frolik sends a cross-ice pass to Stephen Weiss who rifles a slap shot that beats Ward's left pad.
5. 2-on-1. Slapshot by David Booth is stopped by Ward but he gives up a huge rebound and Mike Santorelli scores on it. Bad.
6. Hard wrist shot by Chris Higgins beats Ward low blocker side.
7. Marty Reasoner scores on a quick wrist shot from right in front of the net that beats Ward's left pad.
8. Michal Frolik scores on a short snap shot right next to the net that beats Ward top shelf. Ward was a little slow but there was nothing he could do here.
9. Mike Weaver's slap shot takes a big rebound off the glass and it goes right to Darcy Hordichuk who is standing right in front of the net and he beats Ward low glove.
10. Soft looking shot by Michal Frolik from a brutal angle beats Ward low glove side. Bad in so many ways.
11. One-timer by Kurtis Foster is stopped by Ward but he drifted out of his crease after it for some reason and left the puck standing right in front of the net where Dusitn Penner put it home. Suspect.
12. Danny Briere receives a pass right in front of the crease and beats Ward easily through the left pad.
13. 5-on-4. Point shot by Chris Pronger is stopped by Ward, rebound goes to an open Jeff Carter who scores. Suspect because rebound was pretty bad.
14. Deflection. Open shot from the slot by Andrej Meszaros is deflected by Jeff Cater and beats Ward high glove. Ward had already sprawled out to make a save on Claude Giroux and could not recover in time.
15. 5-on-4. 2-on-1. Sharp wrist shot by Jeff Carter from inside face-off circle beats Ward blocker side.
16. Centering pass by Travis Moen is put in by Tomas Plekanec on a wrister that beats Ward low blocker side.
17. Mike Cammalleri, wide open at the side of the net, beats Ward's right pad on a quick wrist shot.
18. Brian Gionta gets in alone and beats Ward five-hole with a snap shot. Came at a slight angle but Ward didn't get any help from the defense.
19. Breakaway. Spin-o-rama scores on a spin-o-rama shot after Ward was aggressive and left his crease to challenge the shot. Suspect because of bad decision by Ward to leave crase.
20. 5-on-4. Daniel Alfredsson scores on a long slapshot that beats Ward low blocker side. Possible screen from Mike Fisher and three Hurricane players.
21. Jarred Smithson beats Ward five-hole on a wide open shot right in front of the net.
22. Turnover in corner leads to Marcus Johansson crashing the net and beating Ward's right pad on a stuff attempt.
23. 2-on-1. Alex Ovechkin makes a back-handed pass to Alex Semin who fires a wrist shot that beats a sprawling Ward.
24. Open wrist shot from inside the face-off circle by James Nel beats Ward high glove.
25. Steve Ott beats Ward's right pad with a wrist shot from right next to the net with no defenseman close to him.
26. Hard slap shot from James Neal goes off the dasher but the rebound goes right to him and he beats Ward low glove side with another hard slap shot from the slot.
27. Ward makes the initial save on Brendan Morrow but gives up a big rebound which is put in by Jamie Benn. Suspect because of bad rebound but there were two Canes players in the aera who didn't get to it.
1. Quick wrister from Milan Hejduk from inside the face-off circle beats Ward high glove.
2. Ward makes the save off a shot by Cody Franson but gives up a big rebound that goes right to Patric Hornqvist who scores high glove on Ward. Bad.
3. Cross-crease pass by Martin Erat goes right to a pinching Shea Weber, who is open at the side of the net, and he beats Ward's left pad on a quick wrister.
4. Ward swats down a shot by Martin Erat but can't control the rebound and Marcel Goc grabs the puck and beats Ward low glove with a wrister. Suspect.
5. Cal O'Riley beats Ward five-hole on a short one-timer from right in front of the net.
6. Puck lose near the crease is controlled by James Neal and he fires a snap shot past Ward high glove.
7. 5-on-4. Alex Pietrangelo's slap shot from deep in the slot beats Ward glove side. Screen in front by David Backes.
8. Evgeny Dadanov gets in alone on Ward and beats him with a wrister by Ward's right pad. Happened after the Canes lost a face-off.
9. Ward makes the first save on Chris Higgins from a sharp angle but gives up a big rebound that is put home by Michael Frolik. Bad.
10. 5-on-4. Open wrist shot from the slot by Evander Kane beats Ward blocker side.
11. Anthony Stewart gets the puck on net and then tries to jam the puck in at least two or three times before he eventually puts it home. Ward appeared to make the save but couldn't freeze the puck and the defense didn't clear it at all.
12. Ward makes the initial save on Corey Perry but surrenders a big rebound and Ryan Getzlaf gets to it and beats Ward five-hole on a wrist shot. Bad.
13. 5-on-3. Big slap by Ryan Getzlaf beats Ward low blocker side. Possible screen in front.
14. Wrist shot by Scott Gomez from the slot beats Ward five-hole.
15. 5-on-4. Andrei Kostitsyn tips in a pass from Tomas Plekanec through Ward's five-hole while being camped out in front of the net.
16. 5-on-4. Huge slapshot by Alexandre Picard from long range goes off the top crossbar and into the net.
17. Mathieu Perreault tips in a pass from Brooks Laich past Ward's left pad.
18. 2-on-1. Alex Ovechkin drops a pass for David Steckel and he scores on a wrist shot past Ward's right pad.
19. Long shot by Mike Green is knocked down by Mike Knuble and put in by Alex Ovechkin. Ward was out of position because of the quick deflection off Knuble and Ovechkin was unguarded.
20. 5-on-3. Big one-timer from Phil Kessel goes off the goalpost and into the net.
21. Back-hander from Phil Kessel goes off Ward's glove and into the net. Bad.
22. Ward makes the first stop on Kris Versteeg but the rebound is put in by Mikhail Grabovski. Ward had time to stop the other shot but was slow diving across. Suspect
1. Wrist shot by Rod Pelley beats Ward five-hole. Possible screen in front by Dainus Zubrus and Brandon Sutter.
2. Back-hander by Travis Zajac beats Ward low blocker side after he was left alone out in front.
3. Slap shot by Patrick Elias beats Ward low glove. Possible screen in front.
4. Deflection. Long slap shot by Dennis Wideman goes off the stick of Chad LaRose and deflects over Cam Ward's right shoulder.
5. Ward makes the first save on Dimitri Kulikov, juggles the rebound and the puck lands right in front of him where Chris Higgins puts it in. Bad.
6. Open wrist shot from slot by Cory Stillman beats Ward low blocker side. Stillman was able to freeze Ward and the defense with a fake shot before he let the wrister go.
7. Big slap shot from the right boards by Bryan Allen beats Ward low blocker. No screen in front or anything. Bad.
8. Long wrist shot by Matt Gilroy beats Ward blocker side. No screen in front and it came from outside the face-off circle. Bad.
9. Mats Zucarrello goes behind the net and beats Ward on a quick snap shot from a bad angle at the side of the net. Ward looked like he wasn't hugging the post well enough and should have stopped it. Bad.
10. Snap shot by Jay Bouwmeester from the slot beats Ward high blocker side.
11. Ward makes the first save on Jarome Iginla but gives up a big rebound right back to him and Iginla back-hands it home. Bad.
12. Big slap shot by Niklas Hagman off a turnover beats Ward high glove.
13. Open slap shot by Curtis Glencross from the slot by Curtis Glencross beats Ward low glove side.
14. Brendan Morrison crashes the net but Ward stops his attempt. However, Morrison is able to tip the puck back to Rene Bourque who fires a wrister past Ward's left pad.
15. Open wrist shot from the slot by Nathan Gerbe beats Ward low glove side. Looks like he may have gotten a piece of it before it went in.
16. Slap shot by Jordan Leopold is stopped by Ward but the rebound lands in front of him where McCormick is able to bat the puck past Ward high glove. Suspect (rebound looked shaky).
17. 5-on-4. Tomas Vanek sends a pass from the boards to Drew Stafford in the slot where he fires a wrist shot that beats Ward low glove. Possible screen in front by Ian White.
18. Short range wrister from Steven Stamkos (who is all alone in front of the net) beats Ward's left pad.
19. Pass by Martin St. Louis is tipped in by Vinny Lecavalier from the slot and past the right pad of Ward.
20. Simon Gagne is able to skate alone to the front of the net and receives and back-hands a shot past the left pad of Ward while crashing into him.
21. Breakaway. Wrist shot from Simon Gagne beats Ward high blocker side on breakaway.
22. Slap shot from the point by Mark Stuart beats Ward high blocker. Screen in front by Michael Ryder and Nathan Horton.
23. 2-on-1. Wrister from Zdeno Chara beats Ward high blocker.
24. 5-on-4. Shot from point by Johnny Boychuk beats Ward low blocker side. Screen by Marc Savard in front of the net.
25. Brad Marchand gets to the front of the net alone after the Canes lose a face-off and manages to score on a rebound which Ward struggled to handle. Suspect.
26. 5-on-4. Milan Lucic connects on a pass from Marc Recchi from the slot and beats Ward's right pad.
27. Brandon Prust beats Cam Ward high blocker with a wrist shot that was blocked in front by Jay Harrison. Looked pretty stoppable. Suspect.
28. Wrist shot from the point by Dustin Jeffrey beats Ward five-hole. Screen by Jordan Staal in front.
29. 5-on-4. Shot from the slot by Mark Letestu beats Ward high glove. Looks like Ward was cheating on one post and had to sprawl to get to the other end.
30. 4-on-5. Breakaway. Pascal Dupuis beats Ward high glove on a back-hander after getting in alone on a breakaway.
31. Slow back-hander from Tomas Kaberle somehow beats Ward five-hole. There was a screen in front by Ian White but the shot could have been stopped easily given how slow it was. BAD.
32. Tim Brent's back-hander from a sharp angle beats Ward glove side after he juggled the shot and couldn't handle it. Bad.
33. 4-on-5. Breakaway. Tim Brent fakes a slap shot and gets Ward to come out of his net to challlenge which leaves a huge opening in the net where Brent scores an easy goal. Ward didn't look good but the D let him down huge here.
34. Centering pass by Tim Brent goes to a wide open Mike Brown in front of the net and he beats Ward's right pad with a tap-in.
35. Michael Grabner scores on a wirst shot from right in front of the net as he beats a diving Ward glove side.
36. Open wrist shot from inside the face-off circle by Andy MacDonald beats Ward high glove.
1. Deflection. Shot from the point is deflected in by Daniel Paille past Ward's five hole.
2. Pass by David Krejci behind the net goes to a wide open Nathan Horton in the slot and he fires a wrist shot that beats Ward high glove.
3. Bad bounce/Deflection. Slap shot from past the face-off circle by Patrice Bergeron somehow gets by Ward's left pad. May have deflected off of Joe Corvo's stick. Not 100% sure what happened but the puck definitely took a weird bounce or two.
4. Wrist shot from the point by Clarke Macarthur beats Ward high glove. Heavy screen in front by Nikolai Kulemin and Tuomo Ruutu.
5. Breakaway. Darryl Boyce beats Ward high blocker side on a wrist shot after a horrible turnover in the defensive zone.
6. Quick cross-ice pass from Dion Phaneuf to Kris Versteeg gives the latter a lot of open net to shoot at and he buries a wrister past Ward blocker side.
7. Fake shot by Bryan Little freezes Ward as the puck is passed to a wide open Niclas Bergfors who fires a wrist shot past Ward blocker side as he sprawls to attempt to make the save.
8. Shot from point by Brent Sopel beats Ward high glove. Huge screen in front by Anthony Stewart and Jaime McBain.
9. Slapshot from the point beats Ward five-hole with some traffic in front. Occured after the Canes lost a face-off and Atlanta was able to get the puck back to the point quickly.
10. Mattias Tedenby beats Ward high glove on a snap-shot in front of the net after being able to sneak in all alone.
11. Ward makes the first save on Ilya Kovalchuk but gives up a juicy rebound and Nick Palmeri jumps on it and beats him high blocker with a wrist shot. Suspect.
12. Quick snap shot from the slot by Mattias Tedenby beats Ward blocker side.
13. 5-on-4. Wrist shot from Jeff Carter goes off Cam Ward's glove and into the net. Had some power to it but it looked stoppable. Bad.
14. 5-on-4. Danny Briere beats Ward high blocker on a shot on the goal line from a sharp angle. Looked like Ward was not covering the post well enough to stop the shot, but Briere was all alone at the time. Suspect.
15. Shot by Martin St. Louis is blocked in front, Ward reacts to it while Steve Downie skates away with the lose puck and beats a sprawling Ward stick side with a back-hander.
16. 5-on-4. Pass by Teddy Purcell is tipped in by Vinny Lecavalier who is standing alone at the side of the net.
17. 2-on-1. Turnover at the blue-line results in Sean Bergenheim getting an odd-man rush and beating Ward's left pad with a quick wrister from inside the face-off circle.
18. Slap shot from the point by Marc-Andre Bergeron beats Ward five-hole with Dominic Moore cruising through the slot.
19. Breakaway. Andrew Ladd gets in alone on Ward and beats him low stick side after making a nice move.
20. Breakaway. Andrew Ladd gets in alone on Ward yet again and beats him high glove with a back-hander.
21. Quick wrister from Ilya Kovalchuk beats Ward glove side with Nick Palmieri providing a screen in front.
22. Shot by Patrik Elias goes off the chest of Ward and the rebound goes over Joni Pitkanen's head and right into the slot where Brian Rolston beats Ward five-hole with a back-hander. Bad.
23. Patrik Elias beats Ward low blocker side after making a slick move to get around Jaime McBain.
24. Soft looking wrister by Blair Betts from outside the face-off circle beats Ward high glove. Very slow reaction from Ward and the shot looked stoppable. Bad.
25. Loose puck in the crease is tipped by Danny Briere to Braydon Coburn in the slot where he fires a wrister that beats Ward top shelf. Plenty of traffic in front on this goal.
26. Point shot by Mark Fayne is tipped in by Dainus Zubrus through Ward's five-hole. Ward did not look good on this goal but the defenseman was very late on picking up Zuburus.
27. Slap shot from the point by Henrik Tallinder beats Ward's right pad. Possible screen in front because Ward looked like he had no idea the shot was coming.
28. Shot by Anton Volchenkov is tipped out of mid-air by Patrik Elias and lands right in front of Brian Rolston who scores on a lay-up. No coverage around the net here at all.
29. Wrist shot from a slight angle inside the face-off circle beats Ward high glove. No screen in front but it may have gone off of Jamie McBain's stick in front.
30. Brandon Prust gets a feed from Sean Avery in front of the net and tips it in past Ward's left pad.
31. 5-on-3. Deflection. Slap pass by Mats Zuccarrello is delfected past Ward's five hole by Ryan Callahan who was providing a screen in the process.
32. Wojtek Wolski puts a shot on net towards the crease and it goes off at least two bodies in front and somehow manages to get past Ward. Not completely sure what happened here.
33. Ward makies the initial save off a shot from Mike Rupp but gives up a juicy rebound that goes right to Pascal Dupuis and he taps it in past Ward blocker side. Bad.
34. Mike Cammalleri beats Ward high glove on a quick wrist shot from the face-off dot. No screen but it came off a bad turnover and was released very quickly.
35. Andrei Kostitsyn forced a turnover in the corner, gets the puck to Lars Eller who is standing right next to the crease and he beats Ward's left pad with a tap-in.
36. Wrist shot by Tomas Plekanec beats Ward glove side. Could have been played better by Ward but Plekanec made a great shot.
37. 5-on-4. Deflection. Shot from the point by Roman Hamrlik goes off the stick of Andrei Kostitsyn, takes a couple bounces and beats a screened Ward.
1. Stephen Weiss' shot from the slot is blocked by Joe Corvo but he gets his own rebound and beats Ward's left pad.
2. Long slap shot by Steve Montador beats Ward five-hole. Not a lot of traffic in front and Ward came out the challenge when he really didn't need to. Suspect.
3. Shot by Andrej Sekera from the point goes off either Jeff Skinner or Tim Gleason's stick and lands right in front of Brad Boyes who puts the loose puck into the net with a soft wrister. Ward was screened the entire time and couldn't react to the rebound.
4. 5-on-4. Ward makes a save on Bryan Little and the rebound is turned over by the defense right to Robbie Schremp who fires a snap-shot that beats Ward high-glove.
5. Nik Antropov passes the puck to Tobias Enstrom who fires a one-timer from the slot that beats Ward's right pad.
6. 2-on-1. Ron Hainsey sends the puck to Tim Stapelton, who is crashing the net, and the puck goes off his skate and past Ward.
7. Wrist shot by Alex Ovechkin beats Ward over his right shoulder. Looked like Ward went to the butterfly a little early but there wasn't much he could do to stop this.
8. Breakaway. Ward makes a sprawling save on Jason Arnott on a breakaway chance but the defense fails to get to the loose puck and Matt Hendricks jams it in past Ward's left pad.
9. 4-on-5. Ward swats down a shot from Kris Russel but the rebound goes to Samuel Pahlsson who beats him low glove. Suspect.
10. Slapshot from a slight angle by Derek MacKenzie beats Ward high glove. No screen in front or anything and his reaction was pretty delayed. Suspect.
11. 5-on-4. Point shot by Dion Phaneuf hand-cuffs Ward and manages to ricochet off his glove and into the net. Bad.
12. 5-on-4. Failed clear results in the puck drifting to the point where Dion Phaneuf launches a slapshot that beats Ward high glove.
13. Darryl Boyce sends a shot towards the net that is deflected in by Tyler Bozak past Ward blocker side from the side of the net.
14. Ward makes the initial stop on Michael Grabner in the slot and the rebound goes to the side of the net where Frans Nielsen jams it in. Suspect.
15. Shot from the point by Travis Hamonic is stopped by Ward, gives up a rebound that is back-handed in by Michael Grabner. Bad.
16. Breakaway chance by Jason Spezza is stopped by Ward and the loose puck in the crease is put in by Colin Greening who was trailing the play.
17. Ward makes the first save on Mark Svatos' shot from the slot, but he pokes away the rebound right to him and he scores on the second try. Bad.
18. Deflection. Slap pass from the point by Jason Spezza is tipped past Ward glove side by Erik Karlsson who is standing by himself at the side of the net.
19. 5-on-4. Simon Gagne gets to the front of the net and beats Ward's left pad on a wrap-around attempt.
20. Deflection. Shot from the point by Victor Hedman goes off Vinny Lecavalier's stick and bounces over Ward's right shoulder.
21. 5-on-4. Shot by Martin St. Louis gets deflected by Tim Gleason towards the net and Simon Gagne jams in the loose puck through Ward's five-hole.
22. 4-on-5. Breakaway. Vinny Lecavalier gets in alone on a breakaway and passes the puck to Martin St. Louis at the last second who beats Ward blocker side with a quick wrister.
23. Simon Gagne forces a turnover, skates to the net uncontested and beats Ward glove side with a backhander.
24. 5-on-4. Vinny Lecavalier's shot from the slot is stopped by Ward but Dominic Moore out-muscles Bryan Allen for the loose puck and he puts it home past Ward with a backhander.
25. Snap shot from a sharp angle by Alex Semin beats Ward over his left shoulder. Shot came from a short distance but Ward didn't hug the post enough and should not have let this one in. Bad.
26. Marcus Johansson gets to the front of the net, makes a move at the top of the crease which causes Ward to try to hug the post and Johansson beats him far side by getting him to over-committ. Suspect but Ward had zero help from the defense.
27. 5-on-4. James Wisniewski sends a slap pass to Mike Cammalleri, who is all alone, near the crease. He makes a couple moves and beats Ward top shelf.
28. 5-on-4. Big slap shot on a one-timer from PK Subban beats Ward five-hole. There was some traffice in front and this shot left Subban's stick so quickly that Ward didn't have time to react.
1. Wrist shot by Jesse Joensu from inside the face-off circle beats Ward low blocker side. Ward didn't look ready for the shot and there wasn't a screen in front. Suspect.
2. Deflection. Point shot by Matt Moulson is deflected off the stick of John Tavares in front and past Ward glove side. Big screen by Tavares as well.
3. 3-on-2 rush. Snap shot by Chris Butler from inside face-off circle beats Ward high glove.
4. Marc-Andre Gragnani puts a soft-looking shot on net that takes a few bounces and somehow beats Ward blocker side. May have taken a couple bounces on the way there but this puck HAS to be stopped. Bad.
5. Breakaway. Bryan Little beats Ward glove side with a wrister on a breakaway.
6. Shot by Steve Downie is stopped by Ward, rebound goes to Dominic Moore who beats him high glove. Suspect.
7. Breakaway. Vinny Lecavalier beats Ward five-hole on a backhander. Ward could have played this better but it wasn't completely his fault.
8. 2-on-1. Steven Stamkos charges the net and takes a cross-ice feed from Teddy Purcell and taps the puck past Ward's left pad for an easy goal.
9. Snap shot from Brett Clark beats Ward high glove. Came off a drop-pass from Martin St. Louis and Ward didn't have much time to react.
Tallies for the type of goals he gave up:
Felt like I typed"shooter gets in alone," "deflection" and "rebound" more times than I could keep count of above. When I watched the highlights on these goals, I thought to myself that the defense in front of Ward was letting him down more than Ward was letting the team down and the tallies confirm that as he couldn't do anything about 62% of the goals he surrendered. Most of the bad goals were from him giving up a bad rebound or being out of position, which has a little bit of a problem with. His reaction time looked really slow on quite a few of these goals, too and that's really the only other big problem I had with Ward and the goals he surrendered, as he was hung out a lot of times this seaosn.
- I wouldn't put Ward in an elite class like his contract indicates but I do think he will provide the Canes with stable and reliable goaltending for the remainder of his contract. He is only 27, appears to get better every year and just underwent what was probably his most grueling season yet in terms of playing time. Having a back-up who can help take some weight off his shoulders will be very important next season and I think we will see an improvement on these numbers. His glove hand, reaction time and at times his positioning appear to be his biggest issues and are something that he can definitely improve on in the next few seasons, or at least that's what he will need to do in order to be put in an elite class. Not that he needs to be perfect or Tim Thomas but if the Canes are going to rely on him as much as they did this sseason, it wouldn't hurt for him to improve on what he did this year.