A LITTLE BIT OF ANDY?: I’LL TAKE THAT

Magnus Paajarvi is the talk of the town after scoring two goals in a 4-1 walk over a bunch of suspects who are unlikely ever to wear the uniform of the Vancouver Canucks Sunday, but that’s not why I’m thinking about the big Swede today.

What caught my ear, as opposed to my eye, about Paajarvi’s debut with the Edmonton Oilers at Vancouver’s rookie tournament in Penticton is the assessment offered by chief scout Stu MacGregor in the aftermath.

When MacGregor talks, people who are really paying attention tend to listen, and what MacGregor said today on the Jason Gregor Show is that the gangly 19-year-old winger has a little bit of Glenn Anderson in him.

To steal from The Champ, I said, "Pardon?"

TAKE IT TO THE HOLE

"I guess there’s a little bit of that high-speed Glenn Anderson to him, you know? He takes it to the net," MacGregor said. "The one thing you’ll notice with Magnus, is he has the unique ability to drive forehand or backhand to the net. It’s almost equal. It’s kind of interesting. I watched that game last night. It’s Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle.

"Magnus kind of said, ‘You know what? I’m tired of hearing about them. I’m Magnus Paajarvi." He kind of showed it. There’s a lot of competitiveness in this young man. I think people will be very excited to see this guy as his career develops."

Safe to say, fans around here are already excited about Paajarvi, and with pretty good reason. The book on Paajarvi, Edmonton’s first pick, 10th overall in 2009 out of Timra IK, we know. With three years in the Swedish Elite League on his resume, Paajarvi is, and should be, ahead of both Hall and Eberle on the learning curve.

That fact — thanks, Captain Obvious — has people picking Paajarvi to outscore Hall and Eberle with the Oilers in his rookie season.

You think?

HOW GOOD?

It’s the Anderson reference — and, no, I don’t think for a second that MacGregor is comparing Paajarvi to a guy in the HHOF who scored 498 regular season goals and owned the playoffs — and the talk about his competitive nature that grips me.

We know Paajarvi has offensive chops. We know he skates well for a player who’ll be, what, six-foot-three and 215 pounds when he fills out? I know Paajarvi has a sense of humour, because he handled some rookie razzing in a scrum — bad hair jokes from resident wise-ass notepads — no sweat the other day.

But a little bit of crust and a competitive streak, too? A chance Paajarvi might comb what’s left of Robyn Regehr’s hair with some composite if he runs at him? That’s a bonus I wasn’t counting on.

I’m not going to start pencilling Paajarvi in for a 70-point season based on one rookie game, but if MacGregor sees even a hint of Anderson in the kid with the way he takes it to the iron and competes, we’d all best pay attention through camp and pre-season.

— Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

  • Chris.

    I’m not going to start pencilling Paajarvi in for a 70-point season based on one rookie game, but if MacGregor sees even a hint of Anderson in the kid with the way he takes it to the iron and competes, we’d all best pay attention through camp and pre-season.

    Good take. It was, after all, just one game… against rookies.

  • Jamie B.

    Paajarvi’s the one who got in a little “trouble” with the media at the 09 World Juniors when he said something about Canada being in trouble if they got down a few goals. He wasn’t in any way trying to be cocky or a smartass about it, just confident, since after they jumped all over him he reiterated with “It is not impossible to beat them. If we face them in the final again, we will beat them.” They didn’t, so you can argue whether it was a good move to say that, but I’d say he’s definitely confident in his abilities and there’s nothing wrong with that.

  • CurtisS

    “A chance Paajarvi might comb what’s left of Robyn Regehr’s hair with some composite if he runs at him? That’s a bonus I wasn’t counting on.”

    Haha, great line but it would be ever better as a quote from MPS!! (then ‘it’ would hit the fan..)

  • Quicksilver ballet

    If you wanted a piece of Glenn Anderson it often came at a price. Nobody was better at appearing semi off balance and bringing that white heavy Canadien stick down on you like an axe than Anderson. Bobby Nystrom and John Tonelli lived in fear of Glenn Anderson, helmet or worse yet no helmet(Nystrom). If you tried to cut him off along the boards, you knew that stick was coming down on you and a concussion or worse was imminant. Nobody made it look accidental better than Glenn Anderson.

    • Bryzarro World

      LMFAO…. My old man used to say the same thing. I read your post and started to howl!! Brings back some memories of watching him lay the lumber down on people

    • Chris.

      The transmission on my wife’s minivan piled up on her way to work last week… so I’m pretty bummed out looking at the repair bill.

      Then I run into Knuckles McGuinty and he says, “Hey Champ, I heard your wife blew a tranny on 50th street the other day.”

      *uncomfortable silence*

      I said, “Pardon…

      (IMO, The whole format is commedic gold.)

  • a lg dubl dubl

    Finally got to see what all the pararvi hype was all about and he didnt look out of place at all on the “smaller” rink. Im getting even more stoked for the season than i already am 😀

    -sidenote- just heard what souray said on tsn, if he can play healthy and play great(actually HIT the damn net) im all for him on the team this year, and if he has 15 goal by xmas id even keep him after the deadline why the hell not the Oilers are gunna sneak in to the playoffs and could use his shot from thr point. Wonder if he might get considered for the “C” its either him or Horcoff….

  • ubermiguel

    I don’t know if anyone could drive the net like Anderson anymore because in addition to what Quicksilver says defensive schemes and players have improved. And rules protect the goalies more.

    Best video I could find was this:

    Were defensemen really that bad in the 80s?

    And just for fun, this is how good the Boys on the Bus were:

    Wow. The new kids will be good, but that was a special team.

  • Chris.

    So Souray is back skating with the Oilers. I’m walking down the street trying to process this turn of events when I run into Dirk Muldoon… a washed up Flames fan from Calgary.

    He says, “Hey Champ. Do you think Tambellini is glad to have Souray on his backend?”

    *uncomfortable silence*

    I said, “Pardon?”

  • book¡e

    Quotes from Gregor

    “Magnus Paajarvi … has a little bit of Glenn Anderson in him”

    “MacGregor is comparing Paajarvi to a guy in the HHOF who scored 498 regular season goals and owned the playoffs”

    “start pencilling Paajarvi in for a 70-point season”

    This is awesome – I am getting pretty excited about the season!

    • Mike Modano's Dog

      It will be very interesting to see…strong prediction! If I had to make that prediction today I have to admit I would be leaning the same way. Regardless of who has the best career, I am definitely pumped about MPS!

      Let’s just hope they all make an impact in the N.H.L. Let’s face it, as solid as some look as prospects some never make that jump.

      I hope Jordan Eberle ends up as Joey Mullen, or even better…and I don’t know what to expect from Taylor Hall. I’ll hope to have a better chance to see what he can do at Training Camp after seeing him at Development Camp.

  • Mitch

    @ Robin Brownlee

    I think maybe MPS will have a few GM’s pulling there hairout wishing that they would have called his name, this is a great event down here in Kelowna nice to see so many oilers jersey’s. On a side note GREAT to see Tambellini tell Souray to stay home, finally at last management ain’t acting like a stray dog that needs a place to live.

  • smiliegirl15

    Not sure if Paajarvi can be considered a dark horse. Most people expect him to do well.

    If you’re talking dark horses; someone like Cogliano would make sense.