Trying to pick the best goaltender in the history of the Montreal Canadiens is like trying to pick your favoriteĀ FriendsĀ character. No matter who you pick, people are going to disagree with you. Thereās simply too many amazing goalies. Canadiens goalies have won a jaw-dropping 29 Vezina Trophies.
Jacques Plante gets the nod for several reasons. First of all, he was a pioneer for goalies. Plante is perhaps best remembered as being the first NHL goaltender to wear a goalie mask. Secondly, heās the franchise leader in wins with 314 and he won six Vezina Trophies. Plante also led the Canadiens to six Stanley Cup titles. Hard to argue with that resume.
Thereās a theory one has to be at least slightly insane to be a goaltender. Who else would willingly let people fire a hard object at them repeatedly? Ken Dryden is Exhibit A for this theory. Though heās one of the weirdest people to ever put on a hockey sweater, you canāt argue with his results. Dryden won five Vezina Trophies. If youāre a trivia man, you can impress your friends with this tidbit ā heās the only player in NHL history to win a Conn Smythe the season before winning the Calder Trophy.
Exhibit B in the theory is Patrick Roy. He wasnāt always the best teammate, but he was incredibly competitive and came up huge in big games throughout his career. Roy ranks second to Plante in wins with the Canadiens.