Bryzgalov playing Giguere out of a job?
I think that J.S. Giguere is feeling a lot better today than he did yesterday morning. I'm guessing that, come Wednesday, Giguere will tell the team that he's ready to play even if he's not 100%. Why do I think this? Two words: Ilya Bryzgalov.
Right now, Bryzgalov is taking Giguere's job away from him. Ilya has been fantastic in net for the Mighty Ducks in Giguere's absence, and with Brian Burke looking to shed payroll and increase flexibility/options under the cap I could easily see Giguere being traded to the first team that wants him. Take a look at the following stats and tell me which are Giguere's and which are Bryzgalov's:
Player #1) 15 games played - six wins, seven losses, 2.49 GAA & .915 sv %
Player #2) 14 games played - four wins, eight losses, 2.62 GAA & .913 sv %
If you said that Giguere is player #1 and Bryzgalov is player #2, you're correct! Now, while the numbers favor Giguere across the board, consider this. If Bryzgalov is to play on Wednesday, and he wins the game allowing two goals or less in the process, than he and Giguere will both have played 15 games and allowed 33 goals. Giguere will have played for about 30 minutes more than Brygalov on the season, but for the most part their ice time will be even.
Now consider these numbers:
Giguere - $3.990 million this season
Bryzgalov - $456,000 this season
Now, if you're Brian Burke and you have two goalies playing almost identically for you, but one makes $3.5 million LESS than the other one, which one would you keep?
This is not to say that I WANT Giguere to be traded, not at all. However, I will not be surprised if he is. If the Ducks can save another $3.5 million to spend on offense, which they desperately need, then I say do it. Bryzgalov is proving that he's ready to be a #1 goalie and since this is a season that is being used to build for the future, why not let him start as many games as possible by trading Giguere for the best players you can get?
I think one thing is for sure...Giguere knows that he is not safe with Burke callling the shots and he will be champing at the bit to get back on the ice and secure his job. Giguere has played very well this season, as has Bryzgalov, but he has to prove that he's the clear cut #1 goalie or else he could be calling some other city home before the end of the season.