Goalies on the Hot Seat: Washington Capitals

Updated: November 24, 2009 at 6:15 pm by Ryan Epperson

Continuing a feature we’re going to look at frequently this year, which goalies are getting the majority of starts and who’s job is in jeopardy? Green means the goalie’s job appears safe, yellow would mean they are yielding more starts to their competitor than normal, red means the starting job appears to be more dependent on performance or a rotation.

Here is what we know:

Semyon Varlamov: 12 games played, 10 started. 8 wins with 1 loss coming in regulation. He has a modest 2.55 GAA and a .916 SV%

Jose Theodore: 14 games played, 13 started. Has a meager 5 wins and 3 losses in regulation. This year Theodore has an astounding 3.24 GAA followed by a .893 SV%

With a quarter of the season almost over, could we see Theodore relegated to backup duty to the young Russian by the halfway mark? It is interesting to note about Theodore, that in his past three seasons his highest SV% was only .910 with Colorado in 2007-2008. Theodore has always been a streaky goaltender where when he’s on, he’s really good – but can also follow that up with bad play. Watching a few Caps games this year, it looks as if Theodore has lost a step somewhat and that does not bode well for a butterfly goalie.

This is not to say Varlamov does not have his fair share of ineptitude, as well. Remember the last game of the playoffs last season for the Caps when the Penguins repeatedly attacked Varly and his weak glove hand. Blame it on the nerves and the pressure of a rookie facing the eventual Stanley Cup champions? Maybe, but he has at times showed that weak glove this year.

The fantasy impact of course is that owners of both Varlamov and Theodore is that you may have to pay closer attention to who is getting the start that night (something we do every day at DailyFaceoff.com).

The question isn’t if Theodore will eventually be replaced – but when?

Jose Theodore, Semyon Varlamov, Washington Capitals