Penguins Jarry is Rising to the Top

Pittsburgh Penguins. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
Pittsburgh Penguins. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images) /

The Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry #35, is rising to the top of the NHL.  He is considered to be one of the best goalies in the game, at this moment in time.  Jarry is playing at such a high level that he single handedly, took the Pittsburgh Penguins team, placed them on his back, and led them to some much-needed wins in November.  Those wins, allowed the Penguins to get back into the Playoff race.

Road wins in Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg and on the Island, showed he can win in hostile environments.  Back-to-Back shutouts against Montreal and Toronto and another shutout against the Islanders, showed he has the mental toughness to compete for 60 minutes.  The Islander shutout might also have exercised a ghost or two from his past (like maybe vs NYI in the playoffs last year).

Jarry has a record of 10-4-4, tied for 6TH overall in the NHL for Wins.  He is carrying a .938 Save %, which is also tied for 6th overall in the NHL.  The most impressive stat is actually his Goals Against Average. As of November 30.2021, Jarry has an amazing 1.85 GAA, 8th overall in the NHL, with 3 shutouts.

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Now we all know that you need good goaltending to win during the regular season and even better goaltending to win the playoffs.  Since 1965, of the 56 players who have won the Conn Smythe award for Playoff MVP, 17 were Goalies (28%).  Here is a quick list.

Conn Smythe Trophy Winners since 1965

Vasilevskiy- 2021 – TB

Quick – 2012 – LA

Thomas – 2011 – Bos

Ward – 2006 – Caro

Giguere – 2003 – Ana

Roy – 2001 – Col

Vernon – 1997 – Det

Roy – 1993 – Mtl

Ranford – 1990 – Edm

Hextall – 1987 – Phila (Lost)

Roy – 1986 – Mtl

Smith – 1983 – NYI

Parent – 1975 Phila

Parent – 1974 – Phila

Dryden – 1971 – Mtl

Hall – 1968 – StL (Lost)

Crozier – 1966 – Det (Lost)

As you can see from the above list, you do not have to be a Hall of Fame goalie to win the Conn Smythe or the Stanley Cup.  You do however, need to be good at the right time.

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Let’s explore why Jarry is so good.


Jarry can see the puck.  Jarry is standing tall, playing the shot straight up and is seeing the puck very well.  This is mainly due to the fact that his Defensemen are keeping it clean in front of the net, so he is able to clearly see the shooting lanes.

The Penguins Block the Opposition Shots

The Penguins averaged 14.3 Blocked Shots in the games they won.  Blocking shots is good way of limiting the oppositions’ direct scoring chances and Jarry is getting this type of buy in from his teammates.  They all seem to be willing to sacrifice their body for the W. (See Penguins Rust #17, block a shot vs Calgary Nov 29.21.  Note:  he is now on the Injured Reserve list.)

Rebound Control

Jarry is not giving up a ton of juicy rebounds at this time.  Any shot that comes his way, Jarry is stopping it, trapping it and not giving it up.  With no second chances, the opposition is becoming frustrated.


As mentioned, with no second chances, the opposition is becoming frustrated and Jarry is gaining more confidence with every game.  It appears the Penguins have committed more effort to Team Defense and because of it, Jarry’s Goals Against Average is dropping.  He is also making better in game decisions.

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Goals Against Average

As mentioned earlier, Jarry has an amazing 1.85 GAA, 8th overall in the NHL, with 3 shutouts.  Wow, impressive as it is, it’s still dropping.

Calm and Cool between the Pipes

It’s easy to say, but hard to do.  Stay chill between the pipes, when players are buzzing all around you, trying purposefully to distract you. Jarry is remaining calm in his net and is moving around his crease with ease.  He is telescoping and getting to his spots in order to take the shot square on.  He has been excellant at positioning himself in the crease, to have the advantage over the shooter.

Sometimes, Jarry is a little loose moving lateral, as the play moves left to right and vice versa.  However right now, he does not seem to be fighting the play or the puck.  He is tight to the post, on both sides of the net and not leaving the shooter much to shoot at.


We know from last season, stickhandling is not a Jarry strong point and always seems to be an adventure.  He has however, limited the amount of times he actually controls the puck and seems to be making smarter decisions with the puck.  Time will tell on this one.  Let’s talk again in April, May and June.

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Key Saves

Jarry is making the Saves he should make and many others he should never make.   These types of awesome saves are literal game changers.  An amazing save, keeps the Penguins in the game, provides a huge boost of confidence to the team and deflates the opposition.

Glove Hand – Is it the only Weakness in his Game

Take a look at the Goal Grid below.  This is where the goals are being scored on Jarry, up to Nov30.2021.

If you look at where most of the goals are scored on Jarry, you might say, Jarry is a little susceptible to goals being scored on his high glove side.  21% of goals, are scored in this zone.

The other issue might be his Mid Blocker, where 18% of goals are scored on him in this zone.

Goal Grid: Shooter’s Perspective

Top Shelf Blocker: 10%       Top Shelf Glove: 21%

Mid Blocker: 18%  Five Hole:15%  Mid Glove: 15%

Low Blocker: 8%  Empty Net: 8%  Low Glove: 5%

Let’s keep an eye out to see if any trends start to appear.  However overall, it is a pretty balanced Goal Grid, meaning no glaring deficiencies stand out, at this time.

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Pittsburgh Penguins … as of Nov 30.2021

10-7-5  =25pts          4th in the Metropolitan Division (Up from 7th Place in Oct)

25 Points                     7th in the Eastern conference (Up from 13th Place in Oct)

25 Points                     10th tied in the NHL overall (Up from 22nd overall in Oct)

Pittsburgh Penguins are holding the Wild Card #1 Playoff Spot.

Jarry is a big reason this looks the way it does, at this time.

My View from the Cheap Seats

The last six games Jarry has played, have been some of the best goaltending I have seen over a two-week period of time, period.  He is playing All World, and might be making a case to be added to Team Canada for the 2022 Beijing Olympics.

It has been such a treat to watch.  I am so happy for him and it’s great to see him getting his confidence back.  The Penguins will need him to rise to the challenge as this season progresses in order to make the Playoffs, and a run for the Cup.

Quote of the Day:

“The rising tide, lifts all boats.”
John F. Kennedy – President USA