Player: Tristan Jarry
Born: April 29, 1995 (27 years old now, 2021-22 was age-26 season)
Weight: 194 lbs.
Hometown: Surrey, British Columbia
Draft: 2013, 44th overall (2nd round) by the Penguins
2020-21 Statistics: 58 games played, 34 wins, 18 losses, 6 OT/SO losses, 4 shutouts, .919 save%, 2.42 GAA
Contract Status: Jarry now has only more season at a cap hit of $3.5M to finish out a three-year contract he signed in 2020. Jarry will be an unrestricted free agent following next season.
After breaking his foot in mid-April, Jarry rehabbed and worked hard to get back. He wasn’t at 100% by Game 7, but still gave it a go in a very admirable effort to get back on the ice for the Penguins’ most crucial game of the season. Unfortunately it didn’t break Pittsburgh’s way, with Jarry giving up four goals on 30 shots in New York’s Game 7 win.
Story of the Season
The Penguins’ confidence in Jarry after a brutal spring 2021 playoff paid off in a major way this season. Pittsburgh hung tough by believing in Jarry and brought him back again for 2021-22, and he rewarded that confidence by being one of the NHL’s better goalies this season.
Jarry ranked eighth among NHL goalies in wins and posted the league’s sixth best save percentage (minimum 30 games). Jarry had a very heavy workload too, playing the league’s sixth most minutes among goalies this season, which would have been even higher had he not missed the last six games of the season with injury.
Despite tons of other injuries and absences for the team early on, Jarry was indisputably Pittsburgh’s rock and best player in the first half of the year. He was named an All-Star for the second time in his career, and for good reason. At the All-Star break Jarry carried a 23-8-6 record with three shutouts and a .923 save%, which ranked in the top-5 among NHL goalies in all three categories at that point.
Any chance for an outside candidacy at the Vezina trophy was lost in February when Jarry’s stats fell off a bit during the team’s mid-year slump, but his play didn’t waver that much even if the stats dropped away a bit.
There is little doubt that Jarry’s April 14th foot injury altered the course and result of the Pens’ season. With Jarry unavailable for the start of the playoffs, and then backup Casey DeSmith also going down in Game 1, Pittsburgh had no choice but turn to third string goalie Louis Domingue. Domingue hung as tough as he could, but didn’t perform well in Games 5 and 6. At that point, despite being just over four weeks from suffering the injury, Jarry came back to start Game 7. Though clearly not 100% (his foot was heavily wrapped in ice and he was walking with a pronounced limp after the game), Jarry made the effort to get back on the ice and left it all out there.
Regular season 5v5 advanced stats
Save Percentage - .925%
Goals Against Average - 2.22
Goals Saved Above Average - -0.23
Shots Against - 1366
Saves - 1263
Goals Against - 103
Expected Goals Against - 104.7
High Danger Shots Against - 370
High Danger Saves - 305
High Danger Goals Against - 65
High Danger Save Percentage - .824%
Average Shot Distance - 35.11 feet
Average Goal Distance - 20.67 feet
Jarry’s 2021-22 was strong and better than expected. The three year sample is now a good bit of data to show his work as a starter, and trends are starting to emerge. Jarry isn’t likely to totally stand on his head and provide and “excellent” start, but he rarely has “bad” starts and more often than not provides quality goaltending. Like most goalies, he struggles on the high danger chances but really excels and gives his team a chance by stopping a vast majority of chances from medium danger locations.
The consistency grading out very highly is another really nice feather in Jarry’s cap, with goaltending being such an unknown variable from year-to-year and maybe even start-to-start, Jarry has exhibited an impressive level of steady play.
Jarry was a goalie who won a lot in 2021-22, and in fact was a reason the Penguins won a lot last season with his play above expectation for the quality and amount of shots faced.
Jarry stacked up pretty well this season when it came to building up more goals saved than expected across the board. Goaltending was certainly not a weak link for the Pens this season when they had their starter in the net.
The saves in the dying moments of a game against Boston to preserve a lead in February set off a powder keg when Jarry chirped Brad Marchand, who snapped and attacked him. That earned Marchand a suspension.
Tristan Jarry says ABSOLUTELY NOT. pic.twitter.com/h9EZsQgylJ— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) February 9, 2022
The Pens didn’t quite measure up against Colorado in March (though in hindsight, no one else in the league has either), but Jarry played pretty well and held the team in the games.
“Centering pass, Jarry with a big stop! Oh, Jarry!”— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) April 1, 2022
Here's our March 'Save of the Month' ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/C4tpHEtnl5
Jarry came into the year with a previous career-high of 39 games in a season, and there was the lingering question about how he would respond from the Islanders playoff debacle of the previous spring. All questions were answered in the affirmative in a very strong way by Jarry, who played 58 games and had an All-Star season and was a major reason that the Penguins comfortably qualified for a 16th straight playoff berth. Unfortunately though, the April injury robbed Jarry of the opportunity to truly reset his playoff reputation and help the Pens to what could have been a somewhat deep playoff run.
At this point with 160 career games under his belt, there is a good baseline of what to expect from Tristan Jarry. He has a career save percentage of .915%, which is above average. In 2021-22, he posted a .919% and 34 wins. In an ideal world next year, he would be steady and give a similar performance to what happened last season...right up until getting hurt.
Question to ponder
Injury or ineffective play by both starter and backup have cost the Penguins two playoffs in a row. With DeSmith heading to free agency, the Pens could have a different goaltender makeup for the first time in a few years. Do they need to bring in a veteran or dedicate more salary space to the backup goalie? Should Jarry be re-signed this summer when he is eligible, or should the team wait to see more in 2022-23 to decide whether or not their present is also their longer-term future with Jarry in the net? There were a LOT of questions about the net last summer, and while some of those questions have changed in nature now, it still seems like there is a lot of uncertainty about how Pittsburgh’s goaltending situation will evolve in the next few weeks, months and years.
How would you grade Tristan Jarry’s 2011-22 season?