Red Wings: What the stats say about Nedeljkovic and Greiss

Octopus Thrower

It’s no secret that the Detroit Red Wings’ goaltenders, Alex Nedeljkovic and Thomas Greiss, have had pretty brutal stretches of play. Delaney Rimer already has us covered with an overview of the goaltender system in Detroit, but let’s dig a little deeper into the advanced stats of the Wings top two goalies.

Alex Nedeljkovic

After a solid start to the year, Nedeljkovic’s stats have nosedived completely. Currently, he has a save percentage of .901, with a goals against average of 3.26. Both numbers are pretty mediocre, but things get really bad when you head to the advanced metrics. According to Evolving Hockey, Nedeljkovic’s goals saved above average is -9.24. His goals saved above expected is also extremely poor, -11.51 to be exact.

Thomas Greiss

If you thought Nedeljkovic’s numbers were tough to read through, avert your eyes for this paragraph.

Greiss has been awful this season. There is no way around it. Currently, his save percentage is sitting at a paltry .885 (which is the second worst among goaltenders that have 20 or more starts), with a goals against average of 3.79. The advanced metrics are even worse. Greiss’ goals saved above average is sitting at -13.53, while his goals saved above expected is at -15.24. There is no positive to pull from the stat sheet.

Sure, Detroit’s defense is pretty bad this season. Oftentimes, the Wings goaltenders are put in terrible situations by the team’s blue-liners. But stats as bad as this aren’t just the result of bad defense – the goaltenders shoulder a good amount of the blame.

This will almost certainly be Greiss’ last season in Detroit, as the Wings look elsewhere for a backup. However, Nedeljkovic is here to stay. He’s had flashes of excellence – even in this brutal stretch, he’s put together few impressive starts. If he’s part of the long term solution in net, Nedeljkovic needs to show more consistency.

With the season falling apart for Detroit, there is plenty of blame to go around. Some of that blame falls on the netminders.

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