The Winnipeg Jets starting goalie from last season, Connor Hellebuyck, still managed to remain in the top ten for the Top 25 Under 25 despite the struggles he went through this season. His style seems to have become less controlled and he struggled because of it. By Jets standards, he was an average goalie, but by league standards he was below-average.
Aside from Hellebuyck’s struggles, he has been a solid goalie at every level including the NHL before this season. It is perfectly reasonable to expect him to bounce back and be at least an average starter at some point. Of course he will have to contend with Steve Mason this year, but Mason’s contract is only for two years; at some point there will be a need for a starter in Winnipeg.
Tim: Connor Hellebuyck had a rough go in his first year as a starter. He had a winning record, but he play was definitely sub-par. Thankfully, one poor year isn't enough to doom a goalie. Hellebuyck earned some doubt, but he's still the Winnipeg Jets' most likely candidate for the future "franchise goalie". Steve Mason was brought in to play, but the best case for the Jets is to have Helleybuck excel and steal the starting job.
Brian: "Off" is the best way I oculd describe Hellebuyck's debut season in a starting role. He never looked to be playing "his" game that earned him the praise given to him over the last few years. This season, playing behind Steve Mason should give him that extra push he needs.
Andy: Hellebuyck recieved the blessing of Jets management as training camp wound down last season, that he was going to be splitting his time with Hutchinson. Too soon, too fast. Shaky play led the Jets to recalling Pavelec inorder to reclaim the season. Hellebuyck reclaimed the net once Pavs went down and out. Hellebuyck will look to lean on Mason this season a bit, but also challenge Mason for the number one spot as the season progresses. A recently signed bridge deal for Hellebuyck also adds fuel to Hellebuyck's fire.