Can Evgeni Nabokov break Brodeur's record?

In 73 games played this season, Evgeni Nabokov has 44 wins, just 4 shy of Martin Brodeur’s NHL record 48 wins from last season. The SJ Sharks have 5 games left, and if Nabokov keeps on winning, the team may give him the chance to break that record. He would need to win all 5 remaining games to break it, 4 to tie it, and 3 to tie for 2nd place with Roberto Luongo and Bernie Parent.

The only real thing stopping him is the fact that the team will undoubtedly want to rest him, seeing how many games he’s played, and the fact that Brian Boucher has been sensational in his 3 games this season. [He’s 2-0-1 with a 0.86GAA and .969SV% with one shutout!] Further complicating matters is that the Sharks are currently in 2nd, 6 points back of the Wings (with 5 less wins), but 11 points up on the NW division leading Wild, and 6 points up (with 2 extra wins) on the Ducks.

Thus, barring any slump, the Sharks are all but guaranteed the 2nd seed.

Does it make sense to try to get Nabokov the record?
Should they rest him?
Or should they finish the season strong on a winning streak?
Lastly, Boucher has played in two games in the last 10 days, which has given Nabby lots of rest. Does Nabokov need more? Or can Boucher keep winning for them if he were to play?

What would you do? The confidence not only for the goalie but for the entire team would be staggering if they sported an NHL record breaking goaltender in their lineup going into the playoffs. But, on the other hand, a tired goaltender is of no use in the playoffs (just like Brodeur arguably was last year).

16 Responses to Can Evgeni Nabokov break Brodeur's record?

  1. habswinthecup-again says:

     It is all about winning the Cup, so I say rest him atleast 2 of their remaining games.

  2. Habs_pm says:

    Sharks are always a No-Show in the playoffs. Great season team though.

    If Nabokov goes down….Sharks have ZERO chance of winning a series. Brian Boucher is a decent back-up but not a replacement. They should rest him.

  3. kamullia says:

    Goaltenders are a different breed, therefore only Nabokov can answer what should be done. I simply would ask him to be honest about his physical conditioning. If he feels that a rest would not be of use (and goaltenders are known for feeling that way, unlike skaters), then I would let him play. Otherwise, I’d give him a couple of games off, but not consecutively. I’d stagger them.

  4. Rico420 says:

    I'd probably let him sit a couple games to get some rest for the playoffs especially seeing as the last couple of seasons he's split the season between Toskala – Give Boucher the reigns for 3 of the 5 and see what happens when things start up in the playoffs if the rest was a good idea or not.

    Any record that surpassed Parent's is "bogus" anyway because of the shootout.

  5. Kramer says:

    All of the goalies now days are wired on caffeine.  They're increasing their reaction time because they are all over-caffeinated.  Even average goalies are making spectacular saves because they're all juiced up.

    I sent a letter to Gary Battman telling him to ban coffee from the game, which would make NHL scoring go up, but he hasn't yet responded.

  6. leafy says:

    Two things happen when you introduce shootouts to the NHL (with 3-point games):

    1. Shitty teams get close to 80 points

    2. Goalies set new NHL records for wins

  7. BruMagnus says:

    Well this is all moot now.

    Boucher started today, and won again, 3-1 vs. the Ducks.

    Even if Nabokov gets 4 more starts he can only at best tie Brodeur.

    I bet Boucher gets one more start and Nabokov wins 2 of 3 games for 46 wins.

    One day not far away we'll see a 50 win goalie! His name will Marc-Andre Fleury!

  8. BruMagnus says:

    3 of 5 is too many. Give him 2 of 5. You don't want Evgeni to go cold. Best to ride a hot streak.

    Totally agree about your shootout rule. In fact, Sawchuk's first 40+ win season is very impressive if you see how few games they played back then. Granted there weren't many teams.

  9. BruMagnus says:
    With the Pacific Division title locked up, the San Jose Sharks can rest some players before heading into the postseason.

    So the Sharks have secured at least 2nd seed and the Pacific Division now. There are 4 games left, I bet Nabokov plays 3 of those, winning 2.

  10. Rico420 says:

    I don't know if Fleury is built to play 75+ games in a season or not – but someday I don't doubt we see a 50 win goalie – and I think his name is gonna be Marty Brodeur.

  11. BruMagnus says:

    I dunno. I don't think he has a good enough team to help him get 50… now Nabokov or Giguere maybe…
    and Fleury if he's healthy and plays 71 games could win 50.

  12. nyrfan1369 says:

    1) the leafs lol
    2) broader

  13. Radio says:

    The record is irrelevant when compared to anytime before Brodeur broke it.

    It's so much easier to get a W now when games cannot end in a tie anymore.

    So we can't really compare the single-season record of the past few years, to anytime before in the 80 game era.

    Anyway, that said. If they start him, he can do it.

  14. chanman says:

    O cmon. everyone knows it's redbull, not coffee.

  15. chanman says:

    I think he means Brodeur. I'd take the guy who has been there and done more in half his career than we can expect from 3rd year talent who has proven he's fragile and has a 5 hole you could play volleyball through. nice to see him NOT sucking right now, but 30 games does not a star make

  16. BruMagnus says:

    You could say that about most teams:
    Canucks – Luongo
    Brodeur – NJ
    Lundqvist – NYR
    Price? – Habs?

    At least with Pittsburgh they could lose their starting goaltender and the best player in the world and still dominate.

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