Goalie issues?

There’s obviously been a lot of debate, here and elsewhere, about Jason LaBarbera. Last night did nothing to calm those discussions. LaBarbera allowed four goals, but how many could he reasonably been expected to stop? Here’s what Matt Greene thought, along with LaBarbera’s thoughts…

GREENE: “I think we held them. They didn’t get that many shots against us. I think we did a good job. It’s just that the chances they had, they buried. They jammed the net on the first one. The second one was a great shot. The third one was a nice play and the fourth was a deflection. I think Barbs played well for us. It’s just a matter of us cutting down on the `Grade A’ opportunities and eliminating the lesser ones.”

LABARBERA: “What did they have, 11 in the first 10 minutes and then seven after that? They made a couple pretty good plays on some of their goals and got a good bounce too. Those are tough, definitely tough for a goalie. I was feeling great, and then a couple unlucky bounces. That’s kind of how it’s been. It’s kind of been up and down like that. One game you get bounces and one game you don’t get them. I felt great out there.”

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  • deadcatbounce

    It’s the same old broken record…

  • Anonymous

    I’ll be the first to say I don’t like Labarbera. But even I can’t blame him for those goals. The 4 on 4 goal by Raymond would have beat any goaltender. And, that was a sick deflection Pyatt. So, for as much as I want a different goaltender, I’m not as angry at Labs as I was last year.

  • CBGB

    I think all of us Kings fans loved the “tiiiiiiimmmmmmbbbbbbbeeeerrrrrr”.

  • Harry

    If you FEEL/ FELT Great out there…..then stop those SOFT SHOTS that become SOFT GOALS!

  • RB from Torrance

    LaBarbera has two fundamental flaws that are unacceptable of any veteran goaltender. He can’t close his five-hole and he takes poor angles. Taking poor angles makes his ability to cover the goal ineffecient and prone to getting beat stick side from just inside the point (happened twice in 6 home games). These are goals that should be stopped 99.9% of the time.

    Call it chemistry, call it a more fundamentally sound game, call it whatever you like. Fact is that the team plays noticeably better under Ersberg than it does under LaBarbera. Why hasn’t Ersberg started a game? In 66 minutes he’s allowed 2 goals (1 per 33 minutes of play). LaBarbera has allowed 24 in 479 minutes (1 per every 19.95 minutes).

    It’s pretty simple math, but in every game LaBarbera starts we have to overcome a 3 goal deficit to win. You can’t calculate the same for Ersberg because he doesn’t have enough ice time, but if you look at last years numbers, that’s reason enough to start him over LaBarbera. If you want more proof, get to Staples Center 20 minutes before game time and tell Murray who looks better in goal during warmups.

  • m

    it’s also unlucky when your team relies on a 6’3″ goalie who can’t hug the short side of the goal when facing a shot from the outside.

  • Mike Corrigan

    On the TV coverage Jim Fox commented more than once about what a great game La Barbera was playing. I couldn’t figure out what game he was watching. Although Jim Fox has forgotten more about hockey than I know, I know a sieve when I see one! I think it’s about time for TM to stop the “I’ve got to let Jason know I’m completely behind him” and let Ersberg play three or four games in a row and see what he can do. That could solve the problem and demand more from LaBarbera (assuming there is more to get, which is becoming more and more apparent is doubtful despite his coming to camp in good shape for once). It was a frustrating game to watch again, with the post-hitting all night and the terrible goaltending. Kopitar is really pushing too hard, and his stressing about finding his game is palpable. This, I think, is a big factor in the overall performance of the Kings this year. Anyway, get the hook! Put in Ersberg! Keep Moller too.

  • cristobal

    RB – Ersberg, out of the 3 periods he’s played, had only one period where he faced more than 2 shots. It was that period, when the Kings were 1 goal down in the 3rd, that he gave up those 2 goals. None of us saw them because the game wasn’t on, but that’s when an elite goaltender makes the great save to keep the team only 1 goal down.
    You’re asking that we blow up Labs for a guy with less than 20 NHL games under his belt. Last season there was no pressure. This year there is.
    Let’s wait until the mistakes are gone until we bring in Ersberg or it will be much the same.

    Matt Greene – While he’s not necessarily worthy of blame on the 3rd goal, his defensive coverage was poor. In fact, it wasn’t effective at all. A pass to a NHL forward standing alone by the net is NOT a “great” pass, its a gimme.

  • The Little Lebowski

    I am so sick of hearing Labs say “I felt good out there.”

    Who cares how good you feel when you allow 4 goals per game. This guy is all talk. Let’s play someone who can stop a puck. Enough of this guy, I can’t stand him any longer.

  • paul

    i am tired of Foxy and Miller they have no idea and are so f#$*ing boring

  • historyguy

    Wow, Paul. I think this may be the first time I’ve ever heard anyone diss on Bob Miller. I can only assume that you’re kidding, because you have no intelligence about hockey if you aren’t.

    Now as to the topic of the thread, I too am growing tired of hearing how all of the goals that are getting past Labs are ones that “he can’t be expected to stop”. This is the N-H-freaking-L! Every team has players who can score great goals! If you can’t be expected to stand on your head and steal a game every couple of weeks, you need to be relegated to being a backup. Which is pretty much what Labs is…a good backup, but not a starter.


  • duckhunter

    Try ersberg for a few games and see what happens. It could be what the kings need. there rookie skaters are not doing a bad job why not put the rookie gaolie in and see what happens

  • cristobal

    Labarbara currently has a better goals against average than these NHL 2008-09 goalies:

    Jose Theodore
    Pascal Leclaire
    Evgeni Nabokov
    Martin Biron
    Chris Osgood
    Fredrik Norrena
    Dan Ellis
    Marty Turco

  • cristobal

    Maybe the name Al Montoya is one Lombardi should consider for the net.


    He’s still young and the scouting report is flattering. One more prospect couldn’t hurt, and we could give him a good test immediately.

  • Bring back Rogie Vachon

    I think cristobal acutally is LaBarbera’s pen name. Either that or his love child. Nobody else could stick up for such uninspiring play by this underachieving goaltender. Let’s put LaBarbera on waivers and see who puts in a claim – nobody, I am sure is stupid enough to pay him such big bucks as the Kings management. Then, when he clears waivers, he can go back to the minors where he belongs.