Earlier today, Sharks head coach Peter DeBoer finally lifted the veil on who was going to be starting Thursday against the Los Angeles Kings in game 1 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The goaltending debate can now be put to rest as Martin Jones will be starting in goal for the good guys.
Jones finished his first season as a San Jose Shark with a 37-23-4 record with a .918 SV% and 2.27 GAA. He started against the Kings all five times this year and went 3-1-1 with a .913 SV% and 2.57 GAA, which is solid against a high-powered team like Los Angeles. How he does in his first actual playoff start remains to be seen, but hopefully all that extra rest time that DeBoer has given him will pay off now.
To the people who are wondering why Reimer has been starting so much recently, it seems that when Jones has a good amount of rest he comes back very strong. The Mercury News reported that, “Since the All-Star break, Jones is 14-10-1 with a goals against average of 2.08 and a save percentage of .922.” so even though the record itself isn’t so impressive, that SV% and GAA is something to get excited about. Also, let’s not forget that Jones recorded a shutout in the Sharks 1-0 season finale win against the Arizona Coyotes, so he won’t exactly be going into game 1 on a cold streak. Quite the opposite.
In my opinion, starting Jones is the right move by San Jose. Yes, Reimer has more experience and has been great for the Sharks in the short time they have had him, but Jones had to carry the goalie job pretty much by himself for most of the season and he has earned the starting position for this game. Now, if he get’s absolutely trashed in the first couple games, I can see the team going to Reimer, but for now, it’s Jones’ series to win.
Fun fact: I have put Martin Jones as the header of all my editorials now and I never had that intention.
Martin “Indiana” Jones and the Quest for the Stanley Cup