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BETWEEN THE PIPES WITH... JASON LaBARBERA

Friday, 01.27.2006 / 11:53 AM / Los Angeles Kings | News
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BETWEEN THE PIPES WITH... JASON LaBARBERA
I think the group of goalies that we have collectively in the Pacific Division is as good and deep in talent as any division in the NHL. We have an established group and each guy has enjoyed success at this level. It is exciting to play against these guys. It does not get much better than this group.

Marty Turco of Dallas – He is a ball of energy. He is always jumping around. One of his strengths is that he is so good with the puck. When you play Dallas you have to change your fore check when you dump the puck in. Obviously he is one of the best because he is on the Canadian Olympic Team. He plays on a good Dallas team. Being that ball of energy also makes him fun to watch.

Evgeni Nabokov of San Jose – He is old school. He comes out and challenges shooters by coming out and being aggressive. He shuffles a lot. You don't see much of that. It looks weird but it works for him. He has had a lot of success the last couple of years. He handles the puck pretty well too.

J.S. Giguere of Anaheim -- His positioning is really good. He is always squared to the puck. His reflexes might not compare to some of the other goalies in the NHL but he is always in position and he reads the play well. Watching him during their playoff run a few years ago, he is obviously pretty good.

Curtis Joseph of Phoenix – He is a guy I followed while growing up. He played for the Leafs and with St. Louis for a while, and is a guy who can make 50 saves in a night. He always takes a lot of shots and while he plays deep in the net, he seems to rely more on his reflexes more so than the other guys I have mentioned so far. It is fun to play against him. Even the name 'CuJo' is cool. He is an older guy but he has proven himself for a lot of years.

Here in LA, I play and am around Mathieu Garon every day. He is a really exciting goalie to watch. He makes spectacular saves. I marvel at how flexible he is. He moves across the crease so quickly. Even from my seat on the bench you see a lot of net and then it disappears as he moves over to cover it. He battles and plays hard. He challenges a lot and he is aggressive. He has good reflexes and I am just amazed, once again, at the flexibility. Even watching him stretch in the locker room is fun.