3 reasons why Stuart Skinner is a prime candidate to win the Vezina Trophy

Stuart Skinner has some epic numbers, even if he hasn’t always been consistent. But that doesn’t mean he’s not a Vezina Trophy candidate.

Mar 9, 2024; Buffalo, New York, USA;  Edmonton Oilers goaltender Stuart Skinner (74) looks for the
Mar 9, 2024; Buffalo, New York, USA; Edmonton Oilers goaltender Stuart Skinner (74) looks for the / Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports
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Stuart Skinner became the Edmonton Oilers full-time starter at goaltender last season, and wow, he’s been a revelation when you look at his overall performance. Replacing Jack Campbell, who found himself in the AHL following an abysmal start, Skinner has seen action in 99 games through March 20th, posting 95 starts in that period and winning 59 contests. 

His overall save percentage in these nearly two full seasons sits at a solid 0.911, with a 2.66 GAA, three shutouts, 59 quality starts, and a 0.621 quality starts percentage. It’s safe to say that in the near-two-year time frame that Skinner looks like a perennial prime candidate to win the Vezina, but that ironically hasn’t always been the case this season

Skinner has had some spans when he (and the Oilers) struggled in 2023-24, and that, along with Winnipeg Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck’s dominance, could hurt him in the race for the Vezina. Look at Skinner’s first 13 games this season, and they were nothing short of awful, with a 4-7-1 record, an 0.865 save percentage, and a 3.66 GAA.

Stuart Skinner has bounced back to become a viable Vezina Trophy candidate 

He also had a shorter period of struggles between February 6th and February 24th, which saw him record just two wins in those nearly three weeks, plus another 0.865 save percentage. But Skinner bounced back since, with his save percentage skyrocketing to 0.941 in his previous eight games between February 26th and March 16th. 

Skinner played well enough to at least have his name mentioned when the league votes on who will ultimately win the award, even with the not-so-good stretches mentioned above. But perhaps he becomes a prime candidate, thanks to the three reasons you are about to check out, even if the Oilers gave him some help at multiple points this year.