The Angry Budgie Live

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Manchester Phoenix 08/09 Season Review – The Goaltenders

Number 31: Stephen Murphy I will hold my hands up and say I was worried when the Phoenix announced Murphy’s signature. After having watched import goalies for many years I did wonder whether a homegrown nettie would do the job for the Phoenix. Now seven months and 66 games later im so happy to have been proven wrong. I have been really impressed with Stephen over the course of the season. He is a cracking goalie, my only negative would be: I would wish he stayed in his net! He tends to go on a wander some times and a few goals were conceded while he was out of position. However he is a flexible goalie and one that can move around in his net at high speed. Im also a fan of his, ‘get any part of your body in the way of the puck’ style of goaltending!

This season has proved he is, arguably, the best British goalie playing in the EIHL. Sadly Mr Lehman gaining a British Passport will now seriously affect any GB progression! A sad day as it was satisfying to see GB move away from this practice, but hey that’s an argument for another day. When you compare Murphy’s stats against the only other British starting nettie he comes off quite well:

Murphy – Games played: 66, GAA: 3.00, Save %:91
Lyle – Games played: 64, GAA:2.92, Save %: 90

So a great season from Murphy in the end and one Phoenix fan gladly proved wrong!

Re-sign? Absolutely yes!

Number 30: Adam Summerfield So it was down to Adam to fill the un-enviable back up goalie slot on the Phoenix roster. This usually means spending the whole season sitting on the bench waiting/dreading the moment the starter is pulled from the game. The 19-year-old northwest native was chosen for this role this past season, and a role im sure he was aware of when he signed up. Without a doubt he will have found it valuable to train with the elite side all year, and when he was called upon during the season he coped well with the pressure.

Another season’s experience gone Adam’s development has gone on leaps and bounds. Hopefully he will get more opportunities at this level soon. Its soon coming to the time where Adam must decide if he wants to carry on warming the bench, or possibly dropping down a level to find a starters position. Either way his time and effort for the Phoenix has been appreciated all year!

Re-sign? Yes please!

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