Every team has their own lynchpin, the player who the fans love, and is often the bane of their opponent’s existence. For the Anaheim Ducks, that player is John Gibson.
It’s inevitable in a league of 31 teams, there will always be a player who is underappreciated, who doesn’t get the credit they deserve and will be underrated by just about everyone who doesn’t watch that players team religiously. But at a certain point, it turns from being underappreciated to being disrespected, and at that point, someone has to speak up. The Anaheim Ducks have a player currently on their roster who falls into this category, and today I will be speaking up to point out the glaring ridiculousness that is the consistent disrespect of John Gibson.
Recently the NHL Network has been putting out lists of their “top 10” or “top 20” players at each position (center, winger, defensemen and goaltender) and, as expected, there are truly controversial takes: Jaccob Slavin not making the defensemen list at all, Mark Stone not cracking the top 10 in the wingers category, and Evgeni Malkin only being #13 on the centers list are all what would be considered “hot takes” and ones that I personally think are valid criticisms.
However, none struck a chord with me as much as when they released their goalie list. Gibson was ranked 10th on that list, and our own Ciara Durant already covered what an injustice that is. I don’t think it’s enough, however, so today I am going to be doing a deep dive on John Gibson and making a case why he should not only be a lot higher than #10 in a ranking of best goaltenders in the NHL, but why anything short of being in the top 3 is wrong.
Note: I will be using advanced statistics and numbers that go beyond the normal wins, save percentage, and goals-against average that everyone is familiar with (I will be using those as well but less often) but will do my best to explain as I go, unless otherwise noted my statistics will be coming from Corsica Hockey.