Originally written October 30, 2012 on The Predatorial:
Photo Credit: http://dinamominsk.info/ When the lockout began almost 45 days ago, Predators fans wondered when they would get a chance to see some of the favorite players: Shea Weber, Patric Hornqvist, Martin Erat, and of course Pekka Rinne. With Rinne darting to the KHL for the time being until the CBA is agreed upon, most of us figured the Finnish dynamo would be head-and-shoulders above the competition overseas and show the world outside of Finland and the NHL why he’s one of the best goaltenders in the world. As of this post, Pekka Rinne is the worst goaltender in the entire KHL. Take a second and read it sentence one more time: Pekka Rinne is the worst goaltender in the entire KHL Stings, doesn’t it? Now, it doesn’t help when his defensemen in front of him have a combined +/- of -26 and it surely doesn’t help when you are a goaltender and you find yourself way out of position trying to play a puck on the far edge of the rink (See the video here). However, let’s check out Rinne’s stats and see for ourselves: Record? 5-6-0. Well, that’s not too bad. Save Percentage? 90.6%. Well….that’s kinda bad. (Dead last in the KHL) Goals Against Average? 2.78. Yikes. (31 of 32 in the KHL) If this were last season in the NHL, his GAA would put him between Richard Bachman and Ray Emery for 62nd in the league while his Save Percentage ties him with Ondrej Pavelec of the Winnipeg Jets for 60th in the league. So, what’s wrong with Rinne? Is the fact that he doesn’t have NHL world-class defensemen in front of him masking his inabilities to play goal? I don’t buy that. While having Shea Weber and Ryan Suter in front of him definitely helps to keep the puck away from the net and less traffic overall, Rinne still made incredible save after save when the puck was most definitely going to reach the back of the net last season, and most times when Weber/Suter weren’t even on the ice. So scratch that excuse. Could it be the decrease in speed from the NHL to the KHL? It’s possible. While that seems a likely culprit, I’m still not sure I even buy that. KHL players are still extremely good hockey players, however the larger ice surface slows down the game considerably due to the excessive amount of space of the international ice rink size compared to a regulation NHL ice rink. However, the speed change in the game could definitely be the culprit if you truly think about the reasons behind it. Compare it to when your driving. Say you’re used to driving 70 miles an hour, but your interstate changed it’s speed limit to 50 miles an hour (a norm 60 years ago when the interstate system didn’t exist). You would feel like you’re driving at the pace of a snail, correct? Perhaps the same thing is happening here. While we don’t know for sure (and most NHL fans aren’t paying attention to the KHL currently) it’s staggering to see Pekka Rinne, a usual front-runner for Vezina favorite the past few years, be at the very bottom of the KHL’s stat leaders. While there could be plenty of reasons behind it, Preds fans have fair reason to worry if the loss of Ryan Suter will definitely impact the play of Pekka Rinne when the NHL returns. Am I worried? No, not until the season starts and we see if Weber/Klein/Josi/Ellis/Gill/Hannan can effectively play the same level of defense (maybe better) that we’ve seen from the Predators over the past few seasons. Until then, though, it’s quite strange to hear the words “Pekka Rinne” and “worst goaltender” in the same sentence and it be a statistically accurate fact.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Jon Gruden on Raiders job: 'I'm not thinking about coaching'

Tom Brady defends not congratulating Garoppolo on TD

Ohio State student who ran on field loses full scholarship

Report: Carson Palmer's nerve injury 'still lingering'

Adam Dunn to retire after 14-year MLB career

Ryan Lochte: Phelps made dumb decision, will learn from it

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Tiger Woods to open restaurant in Florida next year

Royals beat A's in extras, win first playoff game since '85

Mark Davis: Raiders head coaching job will be 'enticing'

Fan on Craigslist offers Nats playoff tickets for threesome

Brady snubs rookie Garoppolo after touchdown pass

Cung Le suspended for failed HGH test

The best games on the NFL slate in Week 5

Aaron Rodgers says smoking gesture a tribute to Jay Cutler

What will the A’s look like in 2015?

Major League Baseball's 2014 All-Disappointment Team

Jeter introduces 'The Players Tribune,' 'The Voice of the Game'

Grading each NFL's team's play at quarter-season mark

MLB.com posts wrong story saying A's won game

WATCH: Brett Favre in new nose hair trimmer commercial

WATCH: Michigan students protest, call for AD to be fired

Marlins president: We're not trading Giancarlo Stanton

Heckling Knicks fan suing team over ejection

This weekend in NFL stupid

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

What will the A’s look like in 2015?

All-Disappointment Team in MLB

Ryan Lochte: Phelps made dumb decision

WATCH: Brett Favre in new commercial

Brady snubs rookie after TD pass

FCC: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

Could Jon Gruden return to Oakland?

Marlins: We're not trading Stanton

Study: 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

Heckling fan sues Knicks over ejection

Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

This weekend in NFL stupid

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.