NHL: The best goalie from each franchise’s history (Updated 2023)

NHL (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images/NHLI)
NHL (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images/NHLI) /
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In the NHL, a great goalie can easily be the difference between winning and losing. Luckily, over the past few decades, hockey fans from across the globe have come to love everything that embodies those players that play one of the toughest positions on an NHL team.

From awesome hockey masks to extraordinary defensive plays, many legendary goalies have truly made a name for themselves through their abilities to stop anything from getting past them. The best of the best have done everything from winning Stanley Cup championships to being a driving force in leaving games victorious.

Let’s go down memory lane and remember some of the best goalies to ever do it for every NHL team. Of course, these were all chosen based on various criteria, from classic goalies of the 80s to even some newer goalies still actively playing today. Please keep in mind that it’s not always about winning Stanley Cup championships that solidified one particular goalie over another but it’s all about the impact they had on their team.

This wasn’t easy to pick the goalies selected here for each team but these are the ones that stood out the most when it came to everything they brought to the table. Let’s fire up breaking down each team’s pick and why this goalie stood out ahead of others on their respective teams.

Boston Bruins
Boston Bruins (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images) /

Best NHL goalie from each franchise: Boston Bruins – Tiny Thompson

Let’s take a trip back to the very early days of the NHL, during the time goalie Tiny Thompson was making history in 1928, his rookie season. There’s always something special about being the first in greatness as Thompson was part of one of the famous “Original Six” teams in the NHL with the Boston Bruins. He was a big part of the franchise winning its first-ever Stanley Cup championship that very same season.

In his rookie season, Thompson not only won it all with the Bruins but he made NHL history by being the only goalie to have a shutout in his first game when compared to other goalies in the Hockey Hall of Fame. He also played in every game for the Bruins that season and was truly a force to reckon with, nothing would get past him at all.

Opposing teams could not figure out how to get him to crack, even in close games to try to tie things up or go for a lead. He ended up with a 1.15 goals-against average in his rookie season which was unheard of at the time and goes to show how hard it was to score against him.

Thanks to everything Thompson brought to the table, the Bruins had a perfect record in the Stanley Cup playoffs as opposing teams combined for just three goals against him. It should also be noted that Thompson was the creator of the famous glove save that we see often in today’s NHL. He was and forever will be a legendary goalie that even to this day, people still speak highly of when it comes to the rich history of the Bruins.