Apr 19, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne (35) plays the puck against the Chicago Blackhawks during the third period at the United Center. The Blackhawks beat the Predators 5-4 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Sabres Wish List #26: Pekka Rinne

I’m down to four players left in my Buffalo Sabres Wish List series, and I have finally gotten around to selecting one of my favorite players to watch in the NHL.

Pekka Rinne, G

Pardon my bluntness, Nashville Predator fans, but there are two things I like about your team: your jerseys, and Pekka Rinne.  And not in that order either.

Seriously: when I’m looking for a hockey game to watch on NHL GameCenter Live, I often seek out Predators games.  Not for the offense – goodness sakes, no!  Nashville was tied with the Florida Panthers last season for the worst offense in the NHL.  No, I tune into Predators games in order to catch a glimpse of Pekka Rinne doing something ridiculous, like this:


Rinne plays for a team that gives him next to nothing in terms of goal support, and yet he still can keep Nashville in most games, even in a season when his defense was trying to compensate for losing All-Star blueliner Ryan Suter.  Yes, he only went 15-16 last year with a 2.43 GAA and a save percentage of .910.   Dammit, have you been paying attention?  His team went 16-23-9 and scored a total of 109 goals all season long, while allowing 133.  Break  it down: they averaged 2.27 goals a game, while allowing 2.77.  Egads!  They would have allowed more if Rinne had not been in the pipes.

Rinne is absolutely huge for a goalie – 6’5″ – so just finding some open space is a challenge.  Somehow, though, he is still flexible, incredibly athletic, and surprisingly fast when you consider his size. From what I read and hear, he’s not the most mechanically-sound goalie in the NHL – but who cares?  LOOK:

I showed my son that final save last year, and he still talks about it.

I could watch the man play goal morning, noon and night.  Throw him on the Buffalo Sabres, and you have a playoff team pretty much instantly.  What would it take to get him into a Sabres uniform?   Darcy Regier would probably have trade every single player on the current roster – no problem!  Sign him up!  Even if Rinne had to play a game with no one in front of him, I’d still watch him play!

Thoughts on Rinne?  Someone else on the Nashville Predators you would like to see play for the Buffalo Sabres?  Share, here or @theamazingMrS.


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Tags: Buffalo Sabres Nashville Predators Pekka Rinne

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