I’m always interested in seeing the first few glimpses of newly drafted players. It is one thing to follow the draft, another to adopt a prospect your team procured and still another to believe in the player with the faith and patience of a fan.
Nail Yakupov’s performance in the Canada-Russia series is the current topic of discussion. Despite posting a point-per-game clip (3, 1-2-3) during the first three contests, most of the things you read about Yakupov discuss what he isn’t doing.I saw several “didn’t notice him” and “turned the puck over” comments and of course Yakupov did have extended periods where there wasn’t much happening.
A couple of points: first, we should expect to see this kind of performance at this time of year. Second, for crying out loud people lets remember he’s 18. If you’re being critical of his defensive play at this tournament, then we really need to have a long discussion about #1 overall picks, Nail Yakupov’s importance to the roster, and what we should consider a reasonable level of defensive awareness for this kind of player.
Me? I’m enjoying summer hockey, that brilliant pass last night and the bullet from game one. There isn’t really much to analyze in these games, although that apparently is an opinion many do not share.