Rangers Sign Goaltender Ondrej Pavelec to 1-Year, $1.3 Million Deal

In Blueshirt Bulletin Main Blog, News by Tom Urtz Jr

The New York Rangers have signed goaltender Ondrej Pavelec, formerly of the Winnipeg Jets.

Pavelec has appeared in 379 games over 10 years and has a record of 152-158-47 with a 2.87 goals-against average and a .907 save percentage.

Those numbers look bad in a vacuum, but things are a little clearer if you evaluate him on 5v5 performance.

This chart shows the breakdown of 5v5 play, and performance based on shot danger type. This also helps tone down the noise and focus on situations within his control. For example, Pavelec can’t help if the Jets give up a lot of goals on the power play, and that’s something that would tank his save percentage and goals-against average. That is why it is useful to look at numbers with five skaters a side to get a sense of how a goalie is playing. This way if the numbers are skewing over special teams performance it is reasonable to consider that in a different environment and more stable setup the problems will not repeat.

All things considered, Pavelec isn’t that bad and he’s a player who could be fine in a backup role working with Henrik Lundqvist and Benoit Allaire.

The Rangers have had great luck with Cam Talbot and Antti Raanta over the past three years, and maybe there is a thought that Pavelec in a backup role in a new market with the best goalie coach in the league will make an impact.

Here is the full release on the signing via the New York Rangers.

NEW YORK, July 1, 2017 – New York Rangers General Manager Jeff Gorton announced today that the team has agreed to terms with free agent goaltender Ondrej Pavelec.

Pavelec, 29, has appeared in 379 career NHL games over parts of 10 seasons (2007-08 – 2016-17), all with the Atlanta/Winnipeg franchise, posting a 152-158-47 record, along with a 2.87 GAA, a .907 SV%, and 17 shutouts. He has registered a .900 SV% or better in eight of his 10 seasons in the NHL, including all seven seasons in which he has made at least 15 appearances. Pavelec established career-bests in GAA (2.28), SV% (.920), and shutouts (five) in 50 appearances with Winnipeg during the 2014-15 season. He also established career-highs in appearances (68) and wins (29) in 2011-12 with Winnipeg, and he ranked fifth in the NHL in saves (1,845) and shots against (2,036) during the season. Pavelec helped Winnipeg advance to the playoffs in 2014-15, and he started all of the Jets’ four playoff contests.

The 6-3, 215-pounder split this past season between Winnipeg and the Manitoba Moose of the American Hockey League (AHL). Pavelec appeared in eight games with the Jets in 2016-17, posting a 4-4-0 record. He also appeared in 18 games with the Moose during this past season, posting an 8-7-2 record, along with a 2.78 GAA and a .917 SV%. Pavelec made at least 30 saves in 10 of his 18 AHL appearances in 2016-17, including a season-high, 43 saves in his final AHL appearance of the season on January 15, 2017 vs. Chicago.

Internationally, the Kladno, Czech Republic, native has represented his country in several tournaments. Pavelec was a member of the Czech Republic’s Olympic team in 2010 and 2014, and he appeared in four contests during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. He was also a member of the Czech Republic’s team at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey. Pavelec has been named one of the Top Three Players on his Team at the IIHF World Championship in each of his last three appearances at the tournament (2011, 2013, and 2015). He helped the Czech Republic earn a gold medal at the 2010 IIHF World Championship and a bronze medal at the 2011 IIHF World Championship.

Pavelec was selected by Atlanta in the second round, 41st overall, of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. The pick Atlanta used to select Pavelec was acquired in a trade with the Rangers (the Blueshirts included the pick in a trade with the Thrashers to acquire the 12th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, which New York used to select Marc Staal).