Last night, Ray Emery made his third consecutive start for the Blackhawks. He won...again. So now, for the 4th straight season, it appears the Hawks have a goalie controversy.
In 08-09, it was Khabibulin vs Huet.
In 09-10, it was Huet vs Niemi.
In 10-11, it was Turco vs Crawford.
Now, we have Emery vs Crawford.
But I think this year is different. Let's call this a goaltending luxury instead. Controversy denotes that something is wrong. It can't be denied that Crawford has had a few below average games, but he's the Hawks' goalie long term, and should be. Both goalies are good enough to be starters. That was not the case in years past. The backups were brought in because Huet, or Turco, or whoever just couldn't play anymore. The Hawks had no choice, and were fortunate to have NHL ready backups.
Huet is toiling away in Europe right now, while Turco is looking for work. That won't happen with Crawford. He's a young goalie getting better...and while he struggles, Emery is more than capable of giving him the rest he needs.
The Hawks are riding the hot hand. Last year, the Hawks learned the value of every single standings point. At some point, Emery will struggle, and Crawford will jump in. Until then, feel good about the fact that the Hawks are deep enough to have this terrible "controversy."