Ondrej Pavelec Eight Years Later

Ondrej Pavelec 

Ondrej Pavelec played this past season in the NHL for the Winnipeg  Jets.

Position: Goal      Shoots: Left

DOB: Aug.31,1987

Height: 6’3     Weight: 220

Selected by: Atlanta   Round: 2nd   Overall: 41st  Year: 2005 NHL Entry Draft

Eight Years Later

I will be continuing my prospect analysis today with Winnipeg  Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec.  I like to pick a current prospect or roster player on one of my favorite teams and look back at their post draft projections.  The projections are based on their amateur careers and draft position.  One of my favorite websites for this sort of thing is Hockey’s Future.  Ondrej Pavelec has played the last two seasons for the Winnipeg  Jets.  Last season he posted a GGA of 2.80 and a SV% of .905 along with a record of 21 wins, 20 losses and 3 ties in 44 games.  Let’s see what the guys at Hockey’s Future said.


Pavelec TA

Ondrej Pavelec Is Now A Six Year Pro

As I did with some of the others I have evaluated, I am going to forget about Ondrej Pavelec’s pre-Winnipeg  Jets years and base my evaluation on what I’ve witnessed over the past two seasons in a Winnipeg  Jets uniform.  Outside of Dustin Byfuglien and Evander Kane, Ondej Pavelec might be the most polarizing, controversial, coddled, criticized Winnipeg  Jets player.  He has passionate supporters and equally adamant detractors.     

Ondrej Pavelec-6-300x200

Ondrej Pavelec

The guys at Hockey’s Future gave Pavelec a modest evaluation but yet gave him an “A” for a POS.  He might eventually get to an “A” but he’s not there YET.  And that “YET” is still up in the air.  All the red flags that the guys at Hockey’s Future pointed our are still evident today.  That’s very concerning!!!

One of my biggest concerns about Ondrej Pavelec is his inconsistent play along with his workload.  When he’s good he’s pretty good but his save percentage doesn’t justify his workload.  I think his inconsistent play is because he’s overworked.  It’s one thing to overwork a Marty Broduer in his prime and quite another to expect the same results from Ondrej Pavelec with no history having  “better than average” success.  Is it a coaching problem or an organisational depth problem?  Whatever it is he needs a back-up partner that the coaching staff can trust to reduce his workload, especially on back to back nights.

His supporters will point to the Jets not being very good in front of him.  OK, that’s fair at times. Others will point out that this team has NO commitment to overall “team defence”.  Your preaching to the choir there.  They will also state that he’s saved their bacon more than a few times.  Valid points.  But with all that being said, all he has to do is raise his career save percentage up a few points and the Jets become relevant.  Remember boys and girls that stats can be misleading.  GAA is a team stat but save percentage is all the goaltenders.  Save percentages of .905 and .906 won’t cut it unless Pav has Gretzky, Messier, Kurri and Coffey in their prime playing in front him.

Ondrej Pavelec does possess the necessary tools to be a good starter at the NHL level but he needs to start taking the next step.  In today’s NHL, your goaltender needs to be like a 3rd defenceman. Pavelec’s puck-handling skills are well below average.  A decent puck-handling goaltender can take a ton of pressure off your defencemen and during the course of an 82 game schedule can transition to a lower goals against.

The Winnipeg  Jets have committed long-term to Ondrej Pavelec and he is the best goalie they have right now.  The Jets do have some decent prospects in the system but still a long way from challenging for the Winnipeg Jets starting goalie position.  So outside of being traded, he is safe for awhile.    

Ondrej Pavelec is no longer a prospect or a player with potential.  In my opinion, he is a player “on the clock”.  I really feel that Ondrej Pavelec has the ability but he needs raise his level to be a difference maker if the Jets are going to contend for a playoff position.             

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