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About Last Season: James Reimer Performance Review and Grade

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Despite being relegated to the press box at season’s end, James Reimer was a large part of the reason the Hurricanes won the Central Division last year.

Carolina Hurricanes v Florida Panthers Photo by Eliot J. Schechter/NHLI via Getty Images

James Reimer 2020-21 Season by the Numbers

  • Age: 33
  • NHL Seasons: 11
  • Stats: 22GP, 15-5-2, .906 SV%, 2.66 GAA
  • Contract Status: Signed 2-year deal with San Jose for $2.25 million AAV

Lets start off with the most important part of this review. James Reimer got a lot of flak from fans of the Carolina Hurricanes this past season and most of it was unnecessary.

His stats were not great at a .906 save percentage and 2.66 goals-against average. However, there is one stat that matters most of all for goaltenders and that’s wins vs. losses. Reimer went 15-5-2 this season and overall went 29-11-4 in a Hurricanes uniform. Think about that for a second. He won nearly twice as many games as he lost for Carolina.

Let’s put that in to a little more perspective. Reimer’s main counterpart for his time in Carolina was Petr Mrazek. During the same two seasons Mrazek posted a 27-18-5 record with a .909 SV% and a 2.55 GAA. Mrazek was adored by the fan base but Reimer was seen as a scapegoat. The reality is they were basically the same in the regular season.

Originally brought in as part of the deal that sent Scott Darling to Florida (remind me again how Don Waddell pulled that off?) Reimer had the ability to provide the team with a calming presence in net. He created a good balance with Mrazek, who was much wilder in net. Reimer isn’t a super flashy goalie but he made key saves when it mattered most, like this one:

He was also a star in the shootout competition, going 3-1 this season and 6-1 overall for the Canes. Given his ability to out-wait his opponent combined with his 6-foot-3 frame, Reimer had everything he needed to be successful in the skills competition.

With Mrazek missing the majority of the season this year, the net really belonged to Reimer and Alex Nedeljkovic. Once Mrazek returned from injury, the decision was made to relegate Reimer to the press box as he played just four games in the month of April. Before that point, he had three different stretches of four wins in a row, including a stretch of eight wins in nine games. Simply put, without Reimer the Hurricanes do not win the Central Division.

It’s tough to see Reimer depart with his new contract in San Jose, mostly because the goaltenders that are replacing him have had a worse GAA over the past two years and Reimer was loved by his teammates. Only time will tell if it works out in Carolina’s favor, but for the time being all the best wishes to Optimus Reim with the Sharks.

Poll

How would you grade James Reimer’s 2020-21 season?

This poll is closed

  • 9%
    A - Outstanding Performance
    (15 votes)
  • 58%
    B - Above Average Performance
    (89 votes)
  • 30%
    C - Average Performance
    (46 votes)
  • 1%
    D - Below Average Performance
    (3 votes)
  • 0%
    F - Significantly Below Average Performance
    (0 votes)
153 votes total Vote Now