The truth about character

Jason Strudwick
June 27 2013 11:18AM

With the draft coming up on Sunday there has been a lot of talk about the type of players the Oilers should draft. Rookie general manager Craig MacTavish has said he is very interested in acquiring more skill through the draft. I wonder if that is the best approach to build a winning team.

I can't argue that the most important asset a hockey player can have is skill. Without it he will not be able to play at a high level even if he possesses all the other requirements of a NHL player.

In my opinion a very, very close second is character. Skill without character is useless. I would rather have a player with character and less skill then the other way around. I think there is misconception of what character means in a hockey player.

Too often I hear that a team can "just pick a character player up on waivers when they need one". I love it. It makes it sounds like they are going down to the mall to pick up a black pair of shoes that will make a whole outfit work! Makes zero sense to me.

Yes there are players who are referred to as "character players". It seems to me that these are players that do some of the dirtier tasks for a team. Blocking shots, finishing checks, killing penalties and fighting are examples of what people who are "character players" do for teams.

These are important elements to have on a winning club. However, if a team is hoping that these types of players are enough character for a whole team they are kidding themselves.

Players with character vs. character players

Photo: Resolute/Wikimedia Commons

Players with character are required throughout the line-up.

Unfortunately it is pretty hard to quantify character with stats. I guess you could look at blocked shots and hits but to me that just points at the types of players that are often referred to as "character players". How do you figure out if the rest of your players have character who aren't big on those two stats?

We just saw a perfect example in this Stanley Cup Final. Jonathan Toews put on a clinic on what character is all about. The Hawks were having trouble getting to the net with the Bruins line-up of bigger defensemen and centers.

They were having trouble with it because they didn't want to pay the price in the first few games of the series. Would you want to try and go to the net when a mountain of a nasty man is standing between you and the net? You could literally see the change in the Hawks mindset in the last few games of the series.

Toews led the charge by going right at the Bruins captain, Zdeno Chara. No longer was Toews going to let Chara dictate how he or his team was going to play. How many times did you see the smaller Toews battling with the much bigger Chara for loose pucks in the corners and front of the net in the last two games of the series? All the time!

He didn't do it because he was trying to get on the stat sheet with hits, he did it because he knew that in order to win he had to battle the biggest and best the Bruins had to offer. He couldn't avoid it. His character shined through.

He did what was needed to win even though he knew the effort and pain that were required.

That is character. He isn't a "character player.” He is a player with character.

Skilled players go through highs and lows of scoring goals. No NHL players score every night. If a skilled player is having an off night or is struggling scoring what are they contributing to the team's success?

Skilled players with character find ways of helping the team during the lows of a season. They are very solid defensively at those times. Skate and attack the net to create opportunities for others. They become a part of the team's overall success even when they are not having individual success.

At the Draft

Photo: Alexander Laney/Wikimedia Commons

It is clear to me that the Oilers need to add more players with character to their line-up this off season. The first chance they get is this weekend at the draft in New Jersey. Drafting players solely based on skill is not a recipe for success in my opinion.

It is not easy to identify character in draft eligible players. These guys are very young and their games are in full development mode but that is the challenge for scouting staffs across the NHL.

I know many teams look at players away from the rink. What is their lifestyle? How do they treat their billets (for junior-aged players) and teachers (for college players)? Do they put forth effort in off-ice training? Are they responsive to coaching? These are all questions that scouts try to get answered when they are pushing for their team to draft a specific player.

I think a great question to have answered would be this... what does the player do when no one is watching?

I want to know if he does extra after practice on the ice. Is he a guy that is working on his game without being asked? Is he a guy that watches video to improve? Is he a guy that goes to the gym without being asked or prodded?

These are the attributes I saw during my career in players that not only played in the NHL but contributed in a meaningful way to the success of a team on and off the ice.

Don't ever underestimate the value of character in a player. It is a hair under skill in my opinion.

5cf6b487166aced0cd781e41bfef915e
Jason hosts the Jason Strudwick show from 9pm to 12am, weeknights on the team 1260. He is an instructor at Mount Carmel Hockey Academy and loves working with the kids. Having played over 650 games in the NHL, Jason has some great stories and unique takes on life in the NHL. He loves Slurpees and Blizzards. Dislikes baggy clothes and close talkers.
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#51 LOIL99
June 27 2013, 04:33PM
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GVBlackhawk wrote:

NHL players are not paid to analyze the game.

Non-NHL players who like to follow stat-based metrics likely understand more about hockey than you care to know. I love stats and love to play hockey, but I knew that it was not going to be a career for me.

Your statement is the epitome of ignorance.

I would put down a few dollars betting that GVBlackHawk:

1) Drives a jacked up Ford truck. 2) Has a TAPOUT sticker on the back window of that truck. 3) ALWAYS backs that truck into the spot when parking. 4) Has a DUI....currently.

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#52 GVBlackhawk
June 27 2013, 04:43PM
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LOIL99 wrote:

I would put down a few dollars betting that GVBlackHawk:

1) Drives a jacked up Ford truck. 2) Has a TAPOUT sticker on the back window of that truck. 3) ALWAYS backs that truck into the spot when parking. 4) Has a DUI....currently.

Save your few dollars....you're not that smart and probably cannot afford to lose it.

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#53 Sanaa Montana
June 27 2013, 04:46PM
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LOIL99 wrote:

I would put down a few dollars betting that GVBlackHawk:

1) Drives a jacked up Ford truck. 2) Has a TAPOUT sticker on the back window of that truck. 3) ALWAYS backs that truck into the spot when parking. 4) Has a DUI....currently.

I don't often lol, but when I do, I do it to comments like this.

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#54 Quicksilver ballet
June 27 2013, 05:00PM
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@oliveoilers

Figure things would be different for him here now. He wouldn't have to carry the team/be their best player. Dustin has been better in a support role, not when hicks (Al Davis/Srcain) expect/demand he be the Oilers best player.

He could still play in your top 6, when needed. Hate to see MacTavish let personal feelings get in the way of him doing his job. Lowe set the organization back bigtime when he let things get personal with Mike Comrie. Penner should be an option for the Oilers, as sad as it is here, he'd be #2 on the Oilers depth chart as far as left wingers go.

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#55 NewAgeSys
June 27 2013, 05:08PM
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Smokey wrote:

Character is subjective. Saying Hemsky has high skill low character is just that. I know all the reasons why people say this and its being used to ship the guy outta town.

My arguement is against you is this. Guy chose Edmonton and all the media spotlight for 12 years, and has never said a disconcerting word even though hes been scapegoated, called soft and selfish. Guy played here with whatever inadaquate teamates they put on his line, went into the corners against Rhegier ever shift. I remember not only did he take hits you or I could not take, he delivered shots to Rhegier. Wonder why his shoulder are made of "glass." He endured media and coaches questioning his work ethic saying he could be better, while he battled injuries. He sign not one but two contracts to live in Edmonton. One he was underpaid for 6 years. Took countless insults for getting what he was due on the last contract to make up for years of being underpaid. He chose to sign the second ocontract during a rebuild, cause he wanted to be part of the solution. Last season he was the one of the best players during the first half, scoring game winners. Played the second half on a broken foot no less while taking more criticism from the media and fans. Watched his team tank after he left, was no coincidence, the team struggles always in his absence. and predictably fell out of the hunt.

On my 2014 he stays. I'll take his quiet shy demeanour any day. He did not get that good because he is lazy. Maybe you could argue he could be a better leader, I argue let him be what he is a quiet deternined guy.

I agree Smokey, Hemmer represents a key 3rd liner to me, he is an elite zone entry specialist who has 1st line value on some teams.

Just keeping Hemmer and building a line around him with two beasts who can take and hold the front of the net would give us solid tertiary scoring which we dearly need. I would send Hemmer in all night long and just let him pass out front to the beasts. Simple yet very effective because you KNOW Hemmer is getting the pass there no matter what.

Ralph never utilised Hemmer this way because he thought he was better applied with more skill players, WRONG, he is a specialist and needs to be a line catalyst to be at his elite best, he is a jumpy thoroughbred and he actually dominates puck possesion time and takes away from skilled linemates. Minutes are less impactfull on his production than dynamiclly matched linemates because he is a one shot scorer who also makes good passes at a very high %.

No bones about it though, his main focus has to be the third line with upside when needed, no negotiating with him on that.

Lets not assume Hemsky would accept 3rd line minutes, he is in his prime.

It kills me that Ralph refused to put Hemmer on the 3rd line last year when we needed him there to score goals and feed Smyth and Horcs in front.

Smyth-Horcoff-Hemsky is a Championship 3rd line.

Mac-T will make the best moves for the teams present state of affairs, he is responsible and well schooled, I trust him.

I dont undervalue Hemsky one bit if he is uesd in the exact role he can provide optimal impact in. Lets not kid ourselves, he is not as big a risk as people think and has been loyal as old hell. All we need to do is lose one kid to injury next year and we will be fubared without Hemmer, especially if it is another zone entry specialist. That would leave us with just one.

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#56 Rama Lama
June 27 2013, 05:08PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

Some of the scouts asked a certian question and didn't like the response.

Then labled him difficult, ignorant and arrogant

Only to find out on two occasions that the question was lost in-translation.

I think given the opportunity to play with a friend and a Russian without the lost translation you will see a different person.

Edit: I also find it funny that Barkov said almost the same things and had very short one word answers, nobody said boo about that?

Just to be straight..........I for one would take Nichuskin on this team every day of the week!

It's hard to defend against 6' 5" power forwards that skate like he does!

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#57 Dangilitis
June 27 2013, 05:14PM
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Jason, I respect your points, but I don't think they apply to the Oilers. If you look at last year's line-up at forward, for example, who lacks character?

Hall, Eberle, RNH? No f'in way I'd agree Paajarvi? Has been mishandled by team and fought his way back to the NHL, takes character. Hemsky? Debate has already raged on but I don't think he lacks character, he lacks purpose and confidence after years of fans and media ragging on him and his personality without evidence. If you take the Toews example you used, then he must have BOATLOADS of character (watch some Regehr and Hemmer highlights) Yak? Did you ever kiss the Oilers logo on your jersey after scoring, Jason? Smytty? Don't even go there. Jones? Tough spot to be in Horcs? Is there something I should know about the captain's character, which is essentially featured in the media as his biggest upside? Gagner? Also hard to believe him after picking fight with Beauchemin and standing up for his teammates time and time again

That's 10 regular forwards there, all of whom can be said to have character. Perhaps not if you are comparing to Toews, but that's not really fair because he's one of the best in the league.

Saying the Oilers didn't get it done last year because they lacked character makes no sense to me, personally. It's also offensive, and I am surprised a former Oiler would make that kind of presumption unless you are going to back it up with specifics. Who, Jason, was the problem? Who lacked character?

I think most agree that the Oilers didn't get it done last year because many were miscast to fill the roles assigned, and frustration crept into a young line up and to the veterans who were miscast in ridiculous roles (e.g. 37 y/o Smyth asked to play center between two 4th line grinders).

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#58 Quicksilver ballet
June 27 2013, 05:18PM
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Man!....look at that Big Mac guy go...

Wish we had a guy like that Feaster character down in Calgary. He doesn't speak weeks in advance of making needed changes, he just goes out and gets things done, saves his words for the post trade pressers.

The summer of MacT, is still missing in action it appears. How come Feaster's so much better than our guy?

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#59 Eddie Shore
June 27 2013, 05:24PM
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@Quicksilver ballet

Better? Feaster acquired two inferior players and added $500K to his payroll. Hopefully he keeps making "good" trades like this one.

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#60 Quicksilver ballet
June 27 2013, 05:27PM
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@GVBlackhawk

C'mon GVB, were laughing with you, not at you bud. You're one of us hosers too, eh.

How much of this is true? (Ford truck/Tapout decal'n all)

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#61 Smokey
June 27 2013, 05:38PM
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NewAgeSys wrote:

I agree Smokey, Hemmer represents a key 3rd liner to me, he is an elite zone entry specialist who has 1st line value on some teams.

Just keeping Hemmer and building a line around him with two beasts who can take and hold the front of the net would give us solid tertiary scoring which we dearly need. I would send Hemmer in all night long and just let him pass out front to the beasts. Simple yet very effective because you KNOW Hemmer is getting the pass there no matter what.

Ralph never utilised Hemmer this way because he thought he was better applied with more skill players, WRONG, he is a specialist and needs to be a line catalyst to be at his elite best, he is a jumpy thoroughbred and he actually dominates puck possesion time and takes away from skilled linemates. Minutes are less impactfull on his production than dynamiclly matched linemates because he is a one shot scorer who also makes good passes at a very high %.

No bones about it though, his main focus has to be the third line with upside when needed, no negotiating with him on that.

Lets not assume Hemsky would accept 3rd line minutes, he is in his prime.

It kills me that Ralph refused to put Hemmer on the 3rd line last year when we needed him there to score goals and feed Smyth and Horcs in front.

Smyth-Horcoff-Hemsky is a Championship 3rd line.

Mac-T will make the best moves for the teams present state of affairs, he is responsible and well schooled, I trust him.

I dont undervalue Hemsky one bit if he is uesd in the exact role he can provide optimal impact in. Lets not kid ourselves, he is not as big a risk as people think and has been loyal as old hell. All we need to do is lose one kid to injury next year and we will be fubared without Hemmer, especially if it is another zone entry specialist. That would leave us with just one.

Your right. Its why Penner and him worked well. Penner knew how to.go to the net with Hemsky, and how to.find the right spots. Even Horcoff and Smyth learned that. Hemsky not a give and.go player, its kinda been his downfall. Theres more then one way to skin a cat, and Hemsky provides a dimension that will sorely be lacking in the future.

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#62 OilersBrass
June 27 2013, 05:38PM
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@Quicksilver ballet

Weren't you just banned from this site not to long ago?

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#63 madjam
June 27 2013, 05:41PM
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Bring out the firehoses for Flames . Hosed they were , and Shanahan said no thanks to boot .They have MacDavid in their crosshairs.

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#64 GVBlackhawk
June 27 2013, 05:46PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

C'mon GVB, were laughing with you, not at you bud. You're one of us hosers too, eh.

How much of this is true? (Ford truck/Tapout decal'n all)

I don't mind being made fun of by people I like or respect. I suppose I have some amount of 'inner mullet' in me but that person's guess was substantially incorrect. I drive a Mercedes and occasionally the wife's Range Rover.

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#65 PaperDesigner
June 27 2013, 05:53PM
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Jason Strudwick wrote:

You are right there are no stats to back this up other then all the Stanley cup champions since the NHL started. Everyone one of those teams had players with character. Right now I can't remember their Corsi ratings though?

I'm sorry, but I missed the team that had no character players at all.

The problem with this argument is that it's a narrative predicated on success. When does a player have his character questioned? When he performs below expectations, reasonable or not. When does a player have his character praised? When he performs above expectations. There's also a bias towards gritty players, and players who succeed despite less size, because that seems to lower expectations.

Why does San Jose have its character questioned constantly? It's simply because the line-up seems to suggest they should have one cup in the past eight seasons. Detroit and Chicago? Consistent success, cup victories in the past decade, and those are teams that have better "character".

I guarantee, if San Jose had somehow won in 2010 and 2013 instead of Chicago, we'd all be questioning Chicago's character right now.

I'm not saying character has no value--what I am saying is that our assessment is so hopelessly subjective, that it ultimately doesn't help to chase after it. Steve Tambellini made character, however he assessed that, a priority, and that backfired badly. Probably because you have to, as a GM, look at end results, and not worry so much about how much is natural talent versus the result of having great character.

Granted, because you're dealing with such unproven kids at the draft, you have to do background work on the kids... But even the, I think you're just looking for major red flags. Like if a kid was abused by his father, or something, you might rank him a little lower than you would otherwise.

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#66 Klima's Mullet
June 27 2013, 06:04PM
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Mr Strudwick -great blog post...keep it up

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#67 mike
June 27 2013, 06:18PM
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Struddy. You sucked, but you oozed character. You make a compelling argument.

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#68 K_Mart
June 27 2013, 06:24PM
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Smytty-Hemsky-Horc would be an interesting 3rd line... No doubt forward corps...

Hall Nuge Ebs... ... Player X(not mps) - gags - yak... ... Smytty Horc Hemmer... ... Jones ClutterBuck PlayerX

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#69 TigerUnderGlass
June 27 2013, 06:40PM
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@oliveoilers

he is actually very bad in the dressing room.

The Penner ship sailed a while ago, so I don't see how it would happen either, but your claim that he is bad in the dressing room is absolute garbage.

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#70 SrCain
June 27 2013, 07:04PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

Figure things would be different for him here now. He wouldn't have to carry the team/be their best player. Dustin has been better in a support role, not when hicks (Al Davis/Srcain) expect/demand he be the Oilers best player.

He could still play in your top 6, when needed. Hate to see MacTavish let personal feelings get in the way of him doing his job. Lowe set the organization back bigtime when he let things get personal with Mike Comrie. Penner should be an option for the Oilers, as sad as it is here, he'd be #2 on the Oilers depth chart as far as left wingers go.

Please point out to me where I said that? Or anything remotely close.

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#71 admiralmark
June 27 2013, 07:11PM
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This seems like one big Oilers should not draft Nichkushkin post.

And i tend to agree.

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#72 oliveoilers
June 27 2013, 07:23PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

Figure things would be different for him here now. He wouldn't have to carry the team/be their best player. Dustin has been better in a support role, not when hicks (Al Davis/Srcain) expect/demand he be the Oilers best player.

He could still play in your top 6, when needed. Hate to see MacTavish let personal feelings get in the way of him doing his job. Lowe set the organization back bigtime when he let things get personal with Mike Comrie. Penner should be an option for the Oilers, as sad as it is here, he'd be #2 on the Oilers depth chart as far as left wingers go.

Point taken. Maybe, maybe if we could get him cheap enough. Could fill a need with short term contract.

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#73 Aitch
June 27 2013, 07:28PM
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@Cody anderson

Petrell, hordichuk, smyth, anyone else who was a part of the 10-11 team that finished 29th and could've left via free agency. The only changes Tambo made was to add Yakupov and Schultz. So, I'd argue they thought they had the character.

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#74 Cla89
June 27 2013, 07:50PM
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NewAgeSys wrote:

I agree Smokey, Hemmer represents a key 3rd liner to me, he is an elite zone entry specialist who has 1st line value on some teams.

Just keeping Hemmer and building a line around him with two beasts who can take and hold the front of the net would give us solid tertiary scoring which we dearly need. I would send Hemmer in all night long and just let him pass out front to the beasts. Simple yet very effective because you KNOW Hemmer is getting the pass there no matter what.

Ralph never utilised Hemmer this way because he thought he was better applied with more skill players, WRONG, he is a specialist and needs to be a line catalyst to be at his elite best, he is a jumpy thoroughbred and he actually dominates puck possesion time and takes away from skilled linemates. Minutes are less impactfull on his production than dynamiclly matched linemates because he is a one shot scorer who also makes good passes at a very high %.

No bones about it though, his main focus has to be the third line with upside when needed, no negotiating with him on that.

Lets not assume Hemsky would accept 3rd line minutes, he is in his prime.

It kills me that Ralph refused to put Hemmer on the 3rd line last year when we needed him there to score goals and feed Smyth and Horcs in front.

Smyth-Horcoff-Hemsky is a Championship 3rd line.

Mac-T will make the best moves for the teams present state of affairs, he is responsible and well schooled, I trust him.

I dont undervalue Hemsky one bit if he is uesd in the exact role he can provide optimal impact in. Lets not kid ourselves, he is not as big a risk as people think and has been loyal as old hell. All we need to do is lose one kid to injury next year and we will be fubared without Hemmer, especially if it is another zone entry specialist. That would leave us with just one.

Very very well said. We need Hemmer. And if he does go I hope we don't treat other players like we treated him. Sad to see after all his loyalty, he's being banished by 90% of Edmonton. If Hemmer stays I hope he has a stellar year and silences some of his critics.

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#75 Bonvie
June 27 2013, 08:00PM
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Rama Lama wrote:

Just to be straight..........I for one would take Nichuskin on this team every day of the week!

It's hard to defend against 6' 5" power forwards that skate like he does!

Yeah Mhinkov was awesome for us he was really hard to Defend a dynamite steal in the first round. I would be more upset with the Oilers wasting a pick on an enigma like this Nikushkin then I was the day they decided they would hire Krueger. If the oilers want a big Russian they should target Slepshev in the 2nd round. Stick to Barkov, Monohan, Nurse, the Swedish centre or the Finish Dman. I can't think of an example even when a player slipped in rankings because of character issues and the team grabbing him didn't get burned. If several GMs and scouts have issues stay clear.

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#76 striatic
June 27 2013, 08:48PM
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there are plenty of statistical analytics derived reasons not to draft Nichushkin.

like from Scott Reynolds' statistical analytics driven comparables article on coppernblue ..

"I understand that Valeri Nichushkin is a fine prospect, but I also think that a lot of his superior draft ranking is based on his projectible skills and stature rather than actual results."

http://www.coppernblue.com/2013/6/5/4397856/valeri-nichushkin-comparables

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#77 Walter Sobchak
June 27 2013, 08:52PM
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Bonvie wrote:

Yeah Mhinkov was awesome for us he was really hard to Defend a dynamite steal in the first round. I would be more upset with the Oilers wasting a pick on an enigma like this Nikushkin then I was the day they decided they would hire Krueger. If the oilers want a big Russian they should target Slepshev in the 2nd round. Stick to Barkov, Monohan, Nurse, the Swedish centre or the Finish Dman. I can't think of an example even when a player slipped in rankings because of character issues and the team grabbing him didn't get burned. If several GMs and scouts have issues stay clear.

This isn't the 1990's anymore, these kids are scrutinized right down to the finest detail.

There are really no more surprises anymore, you know what your buying right off the lot.

My guess is that if a team passes on Nichuskin it's because they went the safe route or need.

But for the three or four scouts that say Nichuskin has issues there are ten credible scouts saying he's the real deal top three or four player.

P.S Barkov Russian bro.

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#78 Walter Sobchak
June 27 2013, 08:55PM
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striatic wrote:

there are plenty of statistical analytics derived reasons not to draft Nichushkin.

like from Scott Reynolds' statistical analytics driven comparables article on coppernblue ..

"I understand that Valeri Nichushkin is a fine prospect, but I also think that a lot of his superior draft ranking is based on his projectible skills and stature rather than actual results."

http://www.coppernblue.com/2013/6/5/4397856/valeri-nichushkin-comparables

That's primarily due to a small sample size in the KHL, however against his own age group he's dominate, so much so Seth Jones had problems containing him.

That's just an objective opinion passed on Nichuskin pro stats.

So while I agree to a point with Reynolds, he also leaves out the bigger sample size.

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#79 striatic
June 27 2013, 08:57PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

This isn't the 1990's anymore, these kids are scrutinized right down to the finest detail.

There are really no more surprises anymore, you know what your buying right off the lot.

My guess is that if a team passes on Nichuskin it's because they went the safe route or need.

But for the three or four scouts that say Nichuskin has issues there are ten credible scouts saying he's the real deal top three or four player.

P.S Barkov Russian bro.

are you trying to say that Barkov is Russian?

his dad is Russian but Barkov was born in Finland and has represented Finland in international tournaments.

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#80 Klima's Mullet
June 27 2013, 08:58PM
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@Walter Sobchak

Barkov is not Russian...he is from Finland

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#81 striatic
June 27 2013, 09:04PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

That's primarily due to a small sample size in the KHL, however against his own age group he's dominate, so much so Seth Jones had problems containing him.

That's just an objective opinion passed on Nichuskin pro stats.

So while I agree to a point with Reynolds, he also leaves out the bigger sample size.

against his own age group is *also* a small sample size.

international tournaments are short.

and where we do have a larger sample size against his own age when he played in russian junior league, he didn't perform as well as, say, Grigorenko.

i'm not saying he's a bad player, but evaluating him using statistical analysis he actually looks much worse than the "saw him good" analysis.

it makes him a high risk, high reward prospect but if you compare him to Monahan or Lindholm using pure statistical analysis, he falls short of both.

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#82 Walter Sobchak
June 27 2013, 09:14PM
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striatic wrote:

are you trying to say that Barkov is Russian?

his dad is Russian but Barkov was born in Finland and has represented Finland in international tournaments.

Semantics!

He is Russian! His mother played for the Russian women's basketball team, his father played for Moscow Dynamo!

His father coaches in the KHL, he speaks Russian!

You can be both! He's both!!

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#83 The Beaker
June 27 2013, 09:18PM
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I know this is off topic but when adults can't tell the difference between your and you're or there, their and they're it's really sad. Grammar and even punctuation aren't really that big of a deal on a site like this but have a little self respect.

-- Off Soap Box --

Meanwhile, if the BPA isn't up to your standard of "character" then trade down. I'd still rather them say "wow, that guy is awesome AND has great character, let's move up to get him!"

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#84 striatic
June 27 2013, 09:19PM
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@Walter Sobchak

was Brett Hull Canadian?

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#85 The Beaker
June 27 2013, 09:22PM
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@Walter Sobchak

Your wrong.*

*See what I did they're.

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#86 Walter Sobchak
June 27 2013, 09:28PM
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striatic wrote:

against his own age group is *also* a small sample size.

international tournaments are short.

and where we do have a larger sample size against his own age when he played in russian junior league, he didn't perform as well as, say, Grigorenko.

i'm not saying he's a bad player, but evaluating him using statistical analysis he actually looks much worse than the "saw him good" analysis.

it makes him a high risk, high reward prospect but if you compare him to Monahan or Lindholm using pure statistical analysis, he falls short of both.

Correct me if I'm wrong but IIRC Grigorenko was older by a year or almost two?

However, as a 17 year old as far as "saw him good" only Drouin was a better 17 year old player in the WJC, as far as pure game goes.

I'm not saying he's not a flight risk or even raw talent wise, but to suggest he's an enigma an has attitude problems because one scout from the ISS didn't like his interview is way off base.

The exact same people tried screwing Yakupov last year as well.

There's is a reason top scouts and experts like MacKenzie and Button, CSS, and other use comparisons like Malkin, Ovenchkin.

Speed, size, skill, offensive, plays RW/LW, if I'm a GM, even from the small sample size he's a top prospect.

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#87 Walter Sobchak
June 27 2013, 09:30PM
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striatic wrote:

was Brett Hull Canadian?

Really? His choice no? Born in Canada but played as a USA hockey player which just made my point. Congratulations.

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#88 Walter Sobchak
June 27 2013, 09:31PM
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The Beaker wrote:

Your wrong.*

*See what I did they're.

I'm on a I phone! See if I care!

A and B conversation C YOUR way out of it!

C what I did THERE!

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#89 Walter Sobchak
June 27 2013, 09:32PM
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Klima's Mullet wrote:

Barkov is not Russian...he is from Finland

Family history, check it out. He's both.

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#90 Bonvie
June 27 2013, 09:39PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

This isn't the 1990's anymore, these kids are scrutinized right down to the finest detail.

There are really no more surprises anymore, you know what your buying right off the lot.

My guess is that if a team passes on Nichuskin it's because they went the safe route or need.

But for the three or four scouts that say Nichuskin has issues there are ten credible scouts saying he's the real deal top three or four player.

P.S Barkov Russian bro.

A good indicator of what the scouts see, is when they chose to pass over the pick. Angelo Espisito is one of the latest guys I remember falling during the draft, your right about breaking down these interviews all questions asked are relevant certain questions are asked just to defeat the possibility of the candidate trying to give the right answer or the answer he suspects that the interviewer wants. I am not sure how much experience or knowledge you have in hiring within corporations, or interviewing in general but I am positive almost every team has guys that know this field well.

Where there is smoke there is fire!!

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#91 Wangtaco
June 27 2013, 09:39PM
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TigerUnderGlass wrote:
he is actually very bad in the dressing room.

The Penner ship sailed a while ago, so I don't see how it would happen either, but your claim that he is bad in the dressing room is absolute garbage.

how would either of you know that? I think both of you are guessing.

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#92 Walter Sobchak
June 27 2013, 09:47PM
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Bonvie wrote:

A good indicator of what the scouts see, is when they chose to pass over the pick. Angelo Espisito is one of the latest guys I remember falling during the draft, your right about breaking down these interviews all questions asked are relevant certain questions are asked just to defeat the possibility of the candidate trying to give the right answer or the answer he suspects that the interviewer wants. I am not sure how much experience or knowledge you have in hiring within corporations, or interviewing in general but I am positive almost every team has guys that know this field well.

Where there is smoke there is fire!!

Good points.

I have had extensive interviews both being the interviewed and the interviewer.

Esposito was passed over because he just wasn't all that good.

Nichuskin if he gets passed over is because teams have concerns about being a flight risk, coming out and saying you want to play for Philadelphia also doesn't help, but if you can get past the immaturity of the kid, he's a top talent.

For the record, I'm a conservative guy when it comes to picks, I want the best player, but I want the best player that's a safe pick, if you know what I mean?

So ya, I'd prefer, Monahan, Lindholm and Barkov.

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#93 Quicksilver ballet
June 27 2013, 10:00PM
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What business is it of ours (the fans), in regards to what these players do on their own personal time. All we should be concerned about is if they're capable of contributing on the ice, add to the entertainment value. If they're unable to contribute sufficiently on the ice. Who cares what kind of character they have off the ice.

Maybe this is part of the problem. I'm sure that Oiler dressing room is chock full of players with "Good Character", but we're sick and tired of being a lottery team. Put the priority back on what the player can contribute on the ice, who the frigg cares about off it. Maybe this "truth about character" is where this management group falls short. Focusing on ship that shouldn't matter.

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#94 Sloppy Joe
June 27 2013, 10:24PM
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The Beaker wrote:

I know this is off topic but when adults can't tell the difference between your and you're or there, their and they're it's really sad. Grammar and even punctuation aren't really that big of a deal on a site like this but have a little self respect.

-- Off Soap Box --

Meanwhile, if the BPA isn't up to your standard of "character" then trade down. I'd still rather them say "wow, that guy is awesome AND has great character, let's move up to get him!"

Don't be so pendantic.

(see how I am setting the bait?)

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#95 Time Travelling Sean
June 27 2013, 10:34PM
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@Quicksilver ballet

So you want a team of Shayne Corson's and Avery's? or guys like that Hernandez guy? Seriously?

I'd rather have inferior players who work hard, represent the city well, and are respectful of themselves and others.

Look at the Bengals or Trail Blazers, who have good athletes with awful characters and judgement off the field/court. They don't do very well.

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#96 Quicksilver ballet
June 27 2013, 10:40PM
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@Time Travelling Sean

This is professional sports, winning is all that matters. What players do off the ice isn't any of the ticket buying publics business. Management believed in Corson so much, they named him captain. Where does the character issue weigh in on that?

This Hernandez guy, can he skate?

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#97 Devolution
June 27 2013, 10:54PM
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The Beaker wrote:

I know this is off topic but when adults can't tell the difference between your and you're or there, their and they're it's really sad. Grammar and even punctuation aren't really that big of a deal on a site like this but have a little self respect.

-- Off Soap Box --

Meanwhile, if the BPA isn't up to your standard of "character" then trade down. I'd still rather them say "wow, that guy is awesome AND has great character, let's move up to get him!"

I actually find the poor grammar very irritating but I keep reminding myself that it is a hockey site, not an English site.

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#98 Crispy
June 27 2013, 11:08PM
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@NewAgeSys

Glad you've been watching your character count. You've definitely had a lot more characters in the past.

I guess the Oilers want character players, but ON needs posters with a bit less characters some times.

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#99 TigerUnderGlass
June 27 2013, 11:19PM
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Wangtaco wrote:

how would either of you know that? I think both of you are guessing.

I'm guessing when I say it's garbage to make such a claim? How does that follow? You just repeated my point trying to disagree with me.

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#100 madjam
June 27 2013, 11:56PM
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Klima's Mullet wrote:

Barkov is not Russian...he is from Finland

FOR THE RECORD : Barkov has legal Dual Citizenship as father is Russian and mother Finnish .

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