The Calder Trophy

I was sitting in my Grandma’s living room in Maidstone Saskatchewan the day they handed out the 1980 Calder Trophy to Raymond Bourque. I was both thrilled (Bourque was a wonderful player, and a Bruin, plus the first Boston defenseman to win since Orr) and angered (Wayne Gretzky was ruled ineligible because the WHA—a league flogged far and wide by NHL bigheads—was suddenly deemed a league worthy of disqualifying 99 simply because he destroyed that league too). Will the Oilers ever have a Calder Trophy winner? Maybe. It’s likely to come in a season no one expects it. Like this one.

THE ATHLETIC!

Give The Athletic as a gift or get it yourself and join the fun! Offer is here, less than $4 a month! I find myself reading both the hockey (Willis, Dellow, Pronman, et cetera) and the baseball coverage a lot, it’s a pure pleasure to visit. We’ll sell you the whole seat, but you’ll only need the edge.

ROOKIE FORWARDS THIS CENTURY

I’ve been tracking rookies for approximately one forever, so feel somewhat qualified to discuss the issue. The Oilers have had some good candidates over the years, it might be an idea to review the happenings since the turn of the century. Back then, I tracked players by “even strength points-per-60” because that was all that was available to me. It changes to 5-on-5 per 60 down the page.

  • All of the rookies who posted 1.90 or better had substantial NHL careers. Is that the line in the sand?
  • Only one player below that number flourished in the NHL. Jarrett Stoll, who posted just 1.39/60 as a rookie.
  • Mike Comrie arrived in time to grab Doug Weight’s wingers. He did well.
  • Shawn Horcoff did not receive the same winger gifts but he did well.
  • Ales Hemsky was Mr. Entertainment the moment he arrived. Proud to say I enjoyed every one of his offensive sorties and cheered until I had brain damage from which I have subsequently recovered. Seriously.
  • Fernando Pisani was a terrific rookie, Jason Chimera was pretty damned good too.

  • Nothing in 2004-05 (lockout), 2005-06 (trying to win a Stanley) and no one had much offensively in 2006-07.
  • The J-F Jacques boxcars are not a typo.
  • The 2007-08 group brought the lumber, but some in the group had trouble with the glove. All three remain in the NHL one decade later, I think the only career that turned out as predicted would be Kyle Brodziak.
  • I think Andrew Cogliano outlasts the group here. He’s going to be fast at 50.

  • We’re 5-on-5 per 60 now and we’re using Natural Stat Trick.
  • Edmonton received 63 goals from rookie forwards in 2010-11. They’re all gone.
  • Taylor Hall was thrown to the wolves, played a ton. Jordan Eberle, two years older, was a more efficient scorer.
  • I always thought Linus Omark and Magnus Paajarvi should have made it, tend to blame the coaches. Then again, I’m not sure it’s reasonable to expect a coach to develop rookie skill wingers four at a time.

  • Ryan Nugent-Hopkins posted solid offensive numbers at 5-on-5 and 5-on-4 as a rookie, although injuries kept his boxcars from looking impressive.
  • Nail Yakupov posted the best 5-on-5 per 60 scoring number among No. 1 overall selections 2010-12. It didn’t do much good but he did score well (especially late in the season) in the discipline.
  • Mark Arcobello is an amazing story, if there is a Hockey God Marcobello will write a book about succeeding through willpower and belief in yourself, and then coach Pittsburgh to a Stanley Cup victory.

  • Connor McDavid posted the best 5-on-5 number of the century for the Oilers’ rookie forwards, a mammoth 2.73. There’s zero doubt he would have broken the Calder drought had he stayed healthy. Probably looking at a playoff spring, too.
  • Leon Draisaitl struggled in his rookie season, blossomed the following year.
  • Anton Slepyshev and Drake Caggiula were two of ‘the 94s’ Peter Chiarelli mentioned as being important to the team. Neither man performed at a level where we can project them to stay a long time.
  • Pontus Aberg is a dynamic young player who should get a solid look this coming season. There are several things to like about him, including good speed and terrific hands.
  • Jesse Puljujarvi had impressive rookie spurts (1.99 5-on-5 per 60 in November) but couldn’t find consistency. He’s 20 now, this is his time.
  • Kailer Yamamoto has a real chance, he has to win a job alongside 97 or 29. If he does, and finds his way to the power play (and can help make it successful), Edmonton may end its Calder famine.

OILERS RIGHT WINGERS VIA THE DRAFT

Two of the last three first-round selections were devoted to right wingers, and really we’re all just waiting for these men to arrive as bona fide NHL players. Over the years, the Oilers have drafted many outstanding RW’s, but have done so without using high draft picks.

  • Glenn Anderson No. 69 overall in 1979
  • Jari Kurri No. 69 overall in 1980
  • Miro Satan No. 111 overall in 1993
  • Ales Hemsky No. 13 overall in 2001
  • Jordan Eberle No. 22 overall in 2008
  • Nail Yakupov No. 1 overall in 2012
  • Jesse Puljujarvi No. 4 overall in 2016
  • Kailer Yamamoto No. 22 overall in 2017

Since 2012 the club has used higher picks, Nail Yakupov representing enormous opportunity lost. I remain confident in the two latest candidates, this season will tell us a lot. Reasonable expectations for Puljujarvi are a full NHL season, something close to 16-20 goals, and a springtime emergence as a difficult out in the postseason. Yamamoto’s path reasonably includes minor league time, I’m suggesting a 50-50 split between Bakersfield and Edmonton. We wait.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

We’re back, at 10 this morning with a wide range of guests and jocularity. TSN1260, scheduled to appear:

  • Jimmy Morrison, Edmonton Prospects PBP. Prospects through to second round and facing tough Medicine Hat. We’ll chat about a fabulous season and postseason in Edmonton.
  • Guy Flaming, The Pipeline Show. First blush at the Hlinka-Gretzky, who impressed yesterday?
  • Scott Cullen, TSN. CFL Week in review and the one ahead, the Hurricanes-Sabres Skinner trade and when do NHL execs get back in the office?
  • Devan Fink, Beyond the Boxscore. Why is MLB suffering in attendance?

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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103 Responses to "The Calder Trophy"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    Those are some pretty nice looking EV P/60 numbers in the early 2000s – is there really that much of a boost from EV to 5 on 5?

    Pisani’s rookie numbers do look great but I note the age: 25.

    What a god-awful group in 2006/7 – no offence to the players.

  2. OriginalPouzar says:

    I have stated in the past numerous times that JFJ was the worst NHL player that I’ve ever seen.

    I remember one play near the end of those 37 games where he took a pass near the red line, gained the red line and dumped it in and I remember thinking to myself: “That’s the best play JFJ has ever made in the NHL!”

  3. OriginalPouzar says:

    Question for SwedishPoster (or anyone else that knows) regarding Berglund.

    I was always under the impression that the plan was for him to sign with the Oilers and come over to North America after this season, however, having a conversation with Shane Sander last night, I realized that he’s actually signed for two more season in Skelleftea. So:

    1) Do we know if there is an “out clause” in his contract?

    2) Do we know if he actually wants to play in the NHL and/or intends to come over to North America – I mean, he’s been with Skelleftea for years and he was born there – I’m sure there is loyalty and maybe he just wants to stay at home?

  4. Lowetide says:

    Re EV vs. 5-on-5.

    It can be substantial. McDavid was 2.73 5-on-5 as a rookie, 3.00 EV as a rookie. This past season, he was 3.17 5-on-5, 3.52 EV.

    The important thing is to note it, so that we’re not mixing in our apples with our oranges.

  5. OriginalPouzar says:

    Wow – I had forgot how prolific Nuge was as a scorer in his rookie season and am a bit surprised his 5 on 5 P/60 is so high considering I remember him being a wizard on the PP and have always felt that his 5 on 5 numbers have left me wanting a bit more (kind of like Hemsky back in the day).

    Where has Nuge’s 5 on 5 offence gone? Is it a function of being asked to play so many tough minutes and be the number 1 defensive center?

  6. OriginalPouzar says:

    Jesse’s P/60 at 5 on 5 as an 18 year old rookie stands out when compared to some of the other guys at that age (Taylor Hall, etc.). I wonder how much of that was zoomed by McDavid in his draft plus 1 season.

  7. OriginalPouzar says:

    “Pontus Aberg is a dynamic young player who should get a solid look this coming season. There are several things to like about him, including good speed and terrific hands.”

    —————————————————

    Agreed – I see in various blogs, posts, etc. Aberg as the 13th forward or even fighting for a roster spot and I think he should be given a real shot at a top 6 winger spot. He seems like a quicker and more skilled Caggulia to me. Ya, Caggulia is “tenacious” but he doesn’t have the skill to play in the top 6 (I don’t think).

    I just hope that the coaching staff doesn’t hold a grudge against this player due to the missed practice last year. That needs to be water under the bridge and a non-factor. If it is a factor then there is no point in having Pontus in the organization and that would be too bad.

    At $650K (or maybe its $675K), he is a prime candidate for a value contract this year. My goodness if he could earn a top 6 RW spot along with Jesse allowing Yamamoto some nice development time (if he needs) – the would be great!

  8. OriginalPouzar says:

    Lowetide:
    Re EV vs. 5-on-5.

    It can be substantial. McDavid was 2.73 5-on-5 as a rookie, 3.00 EV as a rookie. This past season, he was 3.17 5-on-5, 3.52 EV.

    The important thing is to note it, so that we’re not mixing in our apples with our oranges.

    Thanks – some of those ES P/60 number were surprisingly high to me.

  9. J-Bo says:

    Is the difference in ES P/60 and 5 on 5 P/60 just 4 on 4 play? Does it include 3 on 3 over time as well?

  10. Henry says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Wow – I had forgot how prolific Nuge was as a scorer in his rookie season and am a bit surprised his 5 on 5 P/60 is so high considering I remember him being a wizard on the PP and have always felt that his 5 on 5 numbers have left me wanting a bit more (kind of like Hemsky back in the day).

    Where has Nuge’s 5 on 5 offence gone? Is it a function of being asked to play so many tough minutes and be the number 1 defensive center?

    Shawn Horcoff and Tom Renney did very good things for the Nuge’s development as a rookie.
    OriginalPouzar,

  11. OilClog says:

    Hall having more goals in less games would tell me he was more effiecient then Ebs, but secondary assists.

    Just one game of Hemsky flying with Mcdavid.. just one dear Hockey Gords.

  12. Lowetide says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    “Pontus Aberg is a dynamic young player who should get a solid look this coming season. There are several things to like about him, including good speed and terrific hands.”

    —————————————————

    Agreed – I see in various blogs, posts, etc. Aberg as the 13th forward or even fighting for a roster spot and I think he should be given a real shot at a top 6 winger spot. He seems like a quicker and more skilled Caggulia to me. Ya, Caggulia is “tenacious” but he doesn’t have the skill to play in the top 6 (I don’t think).

    I just hope that the coaching staff doesn’t hold a grudge against this player due to the missed practice last year.That needs to be water under the bridge and a non-factor. If it is a factor then there is no point in having Pontus in the organization and that would be too bad.

    At $650K (or maybe its $675K), he is a prime candidate for a value contract this year. My goodness if he could earn a top 6 RW spot along with Jesse allowing Yamamoto some nice development time (if he needs) – the would be great!

    Oh, I think Aberg will be fighting for a job but he won’t be the only one. Coach on a short leash isn’t going to bring an extra bag of patience.

  13. OilClog says:

    People wanted more from Hemsky? What did the rest of the roster make you feel like? Lol

  14. OilClog says:

    Aberg will never take a moment of shine away from Drake, not while coach fancy suits is around. No need for skill when you have itchy elbows!

  15. PaperKurtRussell says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Can’t disagree. I don’t watch AHL much, but I actually saw the game when JFJ scored 4 goals. That’s all she wrote though…

  16. dustrock says:

    That 5v5 number for Draisaitl is crazy, what a difference a year made for him.

    It’s like we have to take the 5v5 number but only in the season they are actually ready to play in the NHL ha ha ha

  17. Scungilli Slushy says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    “Pontus Aberg is a dynamic young player who should get a solid look this coming season. There are several things to like about him, including good speed and terrific hands.”

    —————————————————

    Agreed – I see in various blogs, posts, etc. Aberg as the 13th forward or even fighting for a roster spot and I think he should be given a real shot at a top 6 winger spot. He seems like a quicker and more skilled Caggulia to me. Ya, Caggulia is “tenacious” but he doesn’t have the skill to play in the top 6 (I don’t think).

    I just hope that the coaching staff doesn’t hold a grudge against this player due to the missed practice last year.That needs to be water under the bridge and a non-factor. If it is a factor then there is no point in having Pontus in the organization and that would be too bad.

    At $650K (or maybe its $675K), he is a prime candidate for a value contract this year. My goodness if he could earn a top 6 RW spot along with Jesse allowing Yamamoto some nice development time (if he needs) – the would be great!

    Given how weak Cags possession numbers are it’s baffling Aberg hasn’t been given more time. He’s as fast, heavier, and seems more skilled. The Swede has something going on we don’t see methinks given offense starved Nashville (when they were) didn’t like him. Do teams really value truculence, still, to that level? Is anyone rushing a play because Cags is coming at him?

  18. godot10 says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Wow – I had forgot how prolific Nuge was as a scorer in his rookie season and am a bit surprised his 5 on 5 P/60 is so high considering I remember him being a wizard on the PP and have always felt that his 5 on 5 numbers have left me wanting a bit more (kind of like Hemsky back in the day).

    Where has Nuge’s 5 on 5 offence gone? Is it a function of being asked to play so many tough minutes and be the number 1 defensive center?

    Eakins and McLellan killed Nugent-Hopkins offense with horrific and mediocre coaching. Nugent-Hopkins 5×5 offense was fine with Renney, Krueger, and Nelson.

    He will be awesome on wing with McDavid. Even mediocre coaching can’t kill his offense there, although if the coach stick an AHL RW on the line, it might.

  19. ArmchairGM says:

    This isn’t going to be an easy year to win the Calder, but if Kailer can stick with a skill line out of camp and win a PP1 job, anything is possible. None of the other serious Calder candidates have anywhere near the level of support that’s available to Yamamoto.

  20. trencan says:

    My top forward candidates for Calder Trophy next year are Tolvanen, Petersson and Vesalainen. Top D candidates are Heiskanen and Dahlin. All Scandinavians showed their potential in European top leagues.

    I also hope Joel Persson will have similar career like Lubo Visnovsky. He also started his NHL career as hidden gem from Europe as 24 years old.

  21. jtblack says:

    trencan:
    My top forward candidates for Calder Trophy next year are Tolvanen, Petersson and Vesalainen. Top D candidates are Heiskanen and Dahlin. All Scandinavians showed their potential in European top leagues.

    I also hope Joel Persson will have similar career like Lubo Visnovsky. He also started his NHL career as hidden gem from Europe as 24 years old.

    +1.

    There are always 4 or 5 good Calder Candidates.

  22. SwedishPoster says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Question for SwedishPoster (or anyone else that knows) regarding Berglund.

    I was always under the impression that the plan was for him to sign with the Oilers and come over to North America after this season, however, having a conversation with Shane Sander last night, I realized that he’s actually signed for two more season in Skelleftea. So:

    1) Do we know if there is an “out clause” in his contract?

    2) Do we know if he actually wants to play in the NHL and/or intends to come over to North America – I mean, he’s been with Skelleftea for years and he was born there – I’m sure there is loyalty and maybe he just wants to stay at home?

    1. There’s always an NHL clause in SHL contracts

    2. Yes. He’s stated several times that the NHL is his goal. Last season he said he stayed in touch with the Oilers org weekly. Mainly talking to Per-Erik Eklund, who scouts Sweden for the Oil, but other guys as well, getting pointers or just asking how he’s doing.

  23. OIL ADDICK says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    “Pontus Aberg is a dynamic young player who should get a solid look this coming season. There are several things to like about him, including good speed and terrific hands.”

    —————————————————

    Agreed – I see in various blogs, posts, etc. Aberg as the 13th forward or even fighting for a roster spot and I think he should be given a real shot at a top 6 winger spot. He seems like a quicker and more skilled Caggulia to me. Ya, Caggulia is “tenacious” but he doesn’t have the skill to play in the top 6 (I don’t think).

    I just hope that the coaching staff doesn’t hold a grudge against this player due to the missed practice last year.That needs to be water under the bridge and a non-factor. If it is a factor then there is no point in having Pontus in the organization and that would be too bad.

    At $650K (or maybe its $675K), he is a prime candidate for a value contract this year. My goodness if he could earn a top 6 RW spot along with Jesse allowing Yamamoto some nice development time (if he needs) – the would be great!

    Agreed, I saw him good. For a young guy to be effective, essentially right out of the box with a new system, he’s got the chops to be a W for chia.

  24. OriginalPouzar says:

    Chiarelli was on Oilers Now today – didn’t say much of anything:

    Of course Nurse was brought up and he indicated they are just in the process, he’ll get signed and these types of players take a little longer as there are lots of different leverage points.

  25. OriginalPouzar says:

    On Koskinen – they viewed him (and saw him) multiple times. He matured at a later age. Lots of teams were pursuing him. Oilers were attractive to Koskinen because most Oiler goalies are at the end of their contracts. He had multiple term offers but chose one year with the Oilers. He was in Edmonton in the summer.

  26. OriginalPouzar says:

    Was asked about the Summer Showcase and if its a good place to asses the prospects or not to read too much in to it – Chiarelli said they really don’t read much in to it. Good steps for Bouchard and they’ll see where he is at at rookie camp.

  27. OriginalPouzar says:

    Asked about how Europe will effect training camp – He said that it changes camp a bit – they will try and get a little bit ahead in terms of the roster. Want to pair down the roster early but are allowed to keep a bit of an extended roster overseas. Want to get a little ahead of the game before they head over.

  28. OriginalPouzar says:

    Did Bouchard falling to 10 change the scenario of adding to the defence? He said we were fortunate to have him drop. He is cerebral. He’s a later birthday and a bit older so has that going for him in terms of making the team. His dropping didn’t stop the search for a d-man but it did temper it. We are always looking to improve the back end. There are still some question marks there so we’ll see how it goes.

  29. OriginalPouzar says:

    Right wing is a bit of a question mark, what about a PTO? They’ve talked to a number of players about PTOs – will look at waivers as well. Will take it slow though as there are players that will compete and could win a job. 14th forward is still up in the air.

  30. OriginalPouzar says:

    Can Rieder be an 18-20 goal scorer? Chiarelli thinks his game has that platform. He has speed, he is still young. He can play both sides. The opportunity will be there for him. He has the offensive potential but hasn’t done it yet.

  31. OriginalPouzar says:

    Asked about Puljujarvi – Chiarelli mentioned that, with where he was picked, it seems people expect more immediate returns. He has come along way and has matured alot. He said “this kid is a horse and he can score and he’s still learning”. He will be there in the end and I think you’ll see big things from him this year.

  32. v4ance says:

    The Calder Trophy?

    Well, if Bouchard wins it… playoffs baby! Playoffs!

  33. dustrock says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Asked about Puljujarvi – Chiarelli mentioned that, with where he was picked, it seems people expect more immediate returns.He has come along way and has matured alot. He said “this kid is a horse and he can score and he’s still learning”.He will be there in the end and I think you’ll see big things from him this year.

    Thanks. Nice to hear these words from our organization.

    Jesse will be a massive part of the success I’m sure.

  34. digger50 says:

    Optimism today

    Nuge – McDavid – Strome
    Lucic – Draisaitl – Puljujarvi

    Is this as good a top six as anywhere? It could be.
    Milan could be a force again. I think Jessie is ready.

    Khaira – Brodziak – Kassian
    Is this as good a forth line as you’ll find?

    That leaves building a third line that can compete out of Aberg, Caggs, Rieder, Rattie, ??
    A little bit weak. But again, optimistically Yamamoto grabs 1RW and bumps Strome allowing a third line to be built. And Rieder bumps Milan if the performance is not there.

    Defence is not bad as is, with some depth coming. All NHL quality with youth taking over from veterans and still room for growth. Backed by reasonable goaltending they look solid.

    You can’t judge the roster today by past performance, it’s very young. But if you squint and judge it by potential, and believe new coaching can unlock that potential, you can see the playoffs. (At least I can. You can borrow my glasses if you like)

  35. slopitch says:

    digger50,

    Im with ya Digger. Its summer baby! Dream to dream!

  36. VOR says:

    For years I followed college hockey very seriously.

    I mention this because it was at a college game in St. Cloud, Minnesota that I first asked a scout to explain how he went about judging a player. It was the spring of 1996. The scout was a guy named Paul Anderson who I think was working for the Flyers at the time. He was in his sixties and had been scouting for decades.

    Paul was there because St. Cloud had a 19 year old player who had come out of nowhere to be a possible first round pick. I was underwhelmed and wanted Paul to explain the buzz to me. He was kind enough to take the time to do just that.

    He pointed out that this kid was NHL fast. “Draft speed,” he said. He also, according to Paul, had magic hands. “Draft skill,” he said. But this kid was also NHL sized and for a college player really aggressive. “Draft intensity.”

    Paul said the big thing was this kid was safe. He’d play in the NHL. Probably for a lot of games. He’d cover the bet and not make the scout that picked him look bad.

    “I like to look out past the end of the player’s career and guess how he’ll be remembered. Twenty years from now, long after he has retired, this kid will be remembered as a useful player, coach able, a great team mate. All in all a consummate professional. There is no danger at all that the team that drafts him will regret it.”

    I pointed out the kid didn’t have the offence to play in the NHL and would be at best a fourth line player.

    I will never forget what Paul said to me.

    “But he will be a hell of a fourth line player.”

    The kid didn’t go in the first but did go in the second round. And in 1997-1998 he had his Rookie season. While he was the best rookie on a truly terrible team and did get up to LT’s 1.90/Ev60 nobody could have guessed that as the 2018 season starts he’d be chasing membership in one of hockey’s most exclusive clubs.

    Now you can easily look the player up. There is more than enough detail for you to do so. I assume many of you won’t have to look him up. You will know off the top of your head who I am talking about.

    My real question is did that 19 year old college player cover his draft ranking? Was my friend Paul right? Twenty two plus years ago were we watching a hell of a fourth line NHL player?

    Should we judge that young man we watched in St. Cloud by the company he keeps as he climbs up the mountain to join the Gods of the sport we love?

  37. Pretendergast says:

    VOR,

    Matt Cullen

  38. OriginalPouzar says:

    ArmchairGM:
    This isn’t going to be an easy year to win the Calder, but if Kailer can stick with a skill line out of camp and win a PP1 job, anything is possible. None of the other serious Calder candidates have anywhere near the level of support that’s available to Yamamoto.

    Absolutely, anything is possible – the range for this player this year is so large.

    I don’t know about the Calder but I think his range is anywhere from half the season (or more) in the AHL to 50 plus points in the top 6 in the NHL.

  39. Bank Shot says:

    ArmchairGM:
    This isn’t going to be an easy year to win the Calder, but if Kailer can stick with a skill line out of camp and win a PP1 job, anything is possible. None of the other serious Calder candidates have anywhere near the level of support that’s available to Yamamoto.

    Middlestadt looks to be in a good spot, and there isn’t any pressure on Buffalo to make the playoffs this season so they can be patient with him.

    No room for rookie mistakes in the top six of the Oilers.

    I’m not sure what Yamamoto will do. He didn’t perform as well offensively at 19 as Eberle did though so I’m expecting him to bring less offence to the NHL than Eberle.

  40. OriginalPouzar says:

    trencan:
    My top forward candidates for Calder Trophy next year are Tolvanen, Petersson and Vesalainen. Top D candidates are Heiskanen and Dahlin. All Scandinavians showed their potential in European top leagues.

    I also hope Joel Persson will have similar career like Lubo Visnovsky. He also started his NHL career as hidden gem from Europe as 24 years old.

    I’m looking forward to following Persson this season to see if last season was a one-off or if he is able to continue to produce. Vaxjon was absolutely stacked last season – they will assuredly lose Pettersson but I’m not sure about the rest of their roster.

  41. OriginalPouzar says:

    SwedishPoster: 1. There’s always an NHL clause in SHL contracts

    2. Yes. He’s stated several times that the NHL is his goal. Last season he said he stayed in touch with the Oilers org weekly. Mainly talking to Per-Erik Eklund, who scouts Sweden for the Oil, but other guys as well, getting pointers or just asking how he’s doing.

    Thank you so much for the info.

  42. Bank Shot says:

    Scungilli Slushy: Given how weak Cags possession numbers are it’s baffling Aberg hasn’t been given more time. He’s as fast, heavier, and seems more skilled. The Swede has something going on we don’t see methinks given offense starved Nashville (when they were) didn’t like him. Do teams really value truculence, still, to that level? Is anyone rushing a play because Cags is coming at him?

    Maybe Aberg’s offence is being overrated?

    His possession numbers on the season were the same as Caggiula’s.

  43. unca miltie says:

    Pretendergast:
    VOR,

    Matt Cullen

    my guess was Matt also, but Hendricks. looked it up on hockey db, Hendricks was later.

  44. VOR says:

    Yes, Matt Cullen is the correct answer.

    So did he cover his draft bet?

  45. v4ance says:

    VOR,

    Easily covered his draft bet and the bet for his draft class for the organization. My philosophy would be that a draft that turns out over 400 games played or 200 career points would be covering the bet for an entire draft. Anything over that is a complete victory for the amateur procurement group.

    *EDIT* Looking back over the data, a better cutoff for games played would be around ~600 GP for a successful draft class.

  46. Lowetide says:

    VOR:
    Yes, Matt Cullen is the correct answer.

    So did he cover his draft bet?

    Ironically, Cullen’s rookie EV per 60 was 1.90. He was a very talented player.

  47. VOR says:

    Lowetide: Ironically, Cullen’s rookie EV per 60 was 1.90. He was a very talented player.

    He really had the game to be a top 6 player. Instead I think you might well argue he is the ultimate role player. Already 27th in Games Played (tied with Tim Horton). The most games ever by a player who isn’t a star. And this year he will become the 20th player to reach 1,500. I assume Joe Thorton will be the 19th.

    The rest of Cullen’s career isn’t bad either. What is it just over 700 points. 3 Stanley Cups. Playing in 3 decades.

    It really is quite an extraordinary career.

  48. v4ance says:

    VOR,

    He has the most games played and most points from his draft class now just ahead of Zdeno Chara in both categories. A tribute to his longevity and consistency!

  49. OriginalPouzar says:

    digger50:
    Optimism today

    Nuge – McDavid – Strome
    Lucic – Draisaitl – Puljujarvi

    Is this as good a top six as anywhere?It could be.
    Milan could be a force again. I think Jessie is ready.

    Khaira – Brodziak – Kassian
    Is this as good a forth line as you’ll find?

    That leaves building a third line that can compete out of Aberg, Caggs, Rieder, Rattie, ??
    A little bit weak. But again, optimistically Yamamoto grabs 1RW and bumps Strome allowing a third line to be built. And Rieder bumps Milan if the performance is not there.

    Defence is not bad as is, with some depth coming. All NHL quality with youth taking over from veterans and still room for growth. Backed by reasonable goaltending they look solid.

    You can’t judge the roster today by past performance, it’s very young. But if you squint and judge it by potential, and believe new coaching can unlock that potential, you can see the playoffs. (At least I can. You can borrow my glasses if you like)

    Strome in the top 6 makes alot of sense. He did very well with both Drai and McDavid last year and both Drai and McDavid had better numbers with Strome than without (although the McDavid sample size is really too small to put too much stock in to).

    Its somewhat mind-boggling to me that Strome wasn’t used more in the top 6 last year – all the pre-season verbal from the coach was about him being in the top 6 and maybe being McDavid’s new trigger man. They started him there in camp and, after a game and a half, moved him, pretty much never to be seen again (and when he was seen, the team performed).

    Of course, a 3C fill in would be required. Although not a long term solution, Broziak had phenomenal numbers after the trade deadline last year when moved up to play with Berglund and Steen – in 16 games he led the team in many 5 on 5 scoring metrics.

  50. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    dustrock:
    That 5v5 number for Draisaitl is crazy, what a difference a year made for him.

    It’s like we have to take the 5v5 number but only in the season they are actually ready to play in the NHL ha ha ha

    Drai’s rookie year:

    29 and Yak
    181 min
    CF% 49.7%
    HDSF% 40%
    GF% 16.7% (3-15)
    SH% 3.13
    SV% .857
    PDO 888

    That’s something.

  51. pts2pndr says:

    The next calder trophy winner for the Edmonton Oiers will be Maksimov in 19/20! Depending on when Bouchard makes the team, it could be a two race in 19/20 between Bouchard and Maksimov?

  52. leadfarmer says:

    v4ance,

    I hate games played as a marker by itself. Does 400 games as a role player equal 400 games of a top 6 F or top 4 dman. Players picked in top 10 and top 100 should have different standards than rest of draft

  53. leadfarmer says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Uggh. A later birthday should never be a positive. Defensemen nature at their own damn pace and nothing you can do will speed that up. Later birthday means one thing and one thing only, a potentially lower ceiling than someone 9 months younger

  54. russ99 says:

    Stan Mikita was my Dad’s favorite player. I got to see him play at the stadium as a kid in the very late 70s, he was a shell of himself, my dad would say, but still had style.

    RIP, Stosh. What a legend.

  55. Georgexs says:

    How do you define a rookie season? Winchester played 19 games in 05-06 but you have him as a rookie in 06-07, during which he played 59 games.

  56. Lowetide says:

    Georgexs:
    How do you define a rookie season? Winchester played 19 games in 05-06 but you have him as a rookie in 06-07, during which he played 59 games.

    To be eligible for the award, a player cannot have played more than 25 games in any single preceding season nor in six or more games in each of any two preceding seasons in any major professional league. Beginning in 1990-91, to be eligible for this award a player must not have attained his twenty-sixth birthday by September 15th of the season in which he is eligible.

  57. jm363561 says:

    leadfarmer:
    OriginalPouzar,

    Uggh. A later birthday should never be a positive.Defensemen nature at their own damn pace and nothing you can do will speed that up.Later birthday means one thing and one thing only, a potentially lower ceiling than someone 9 months younger

    ======

    Yes, my view on Bouchard being older than most of his peers is a possible negative. Griffin Reinhart was outstanding in junior but, in hindsight, it was mainly because he was bigger and stronger than his opponents. Same, to a lesser extent, with DNurse. Others have commented on how old Bouchard looks for his age and when his peers catch up physically he may not look quite so impressive – there was a reason he fell down the draft. Hope I am wrong.

  58. Georgexs says:

    Lowetide: To be eligible for the award, a player cannot have played more than 25 games in any single preceding season nor in six or more games in each of any two preceding seasons in any major professional league. Beginning in 1990-91, to be eligible for this award a player must not have attained his twenty-sixth birthday by September 15th of the season in which he is eligible.

    You’re using the official eligibility criteria then. Cool. BRB.

  59. OriginalPouzar says:

    pts2pndr:
    The next calder trophy winner for the Edmonton Oiers will be Maksimov in 19/20! Depending on whenBouchard makes the team, it could be a two race in 19/20 between Bouchard and Maksimov?

    I think you are having some fun but I’m wondering if you do think that Krill has a shot at the NHL in his first year pro? I think we are looking at a couple of years of AHL development time for Maksimov.

    If he does “make it”, he’s going to score some goals with that shot – I’m not sure about Calder level amount of goal but, hey, you never know – he’s a driven kid from accounts, looking to improve and work on his game.

    Management should staple Safin to him at rookie camp.

  60. pts2pndr says:

    Scungilli Slushy: Given how weak Cags possession numbers are it’s baffling Aberg hasn’t been given more time. He’s as fast, heavier, and seems more skilled. The Swede has something going on we don’t see methinks given offense starved Nashville (when they were) didn’t like him. Do teams really value truculence, still, to that level? Is anyone rushing a play because Cags is coming at him?

    I believe it has to do with culture. Our North American culture dictates you do not question the coach!The European attitude/culture is more cooperative and refined. Questioning the coach is a more accepted norm. I am not sure I explained this very clearly. I picked up on this while hosting students from abroad. I can see where there could be a comunication problem with negative results.

  61. New Improved Darkness says:

    From my post yesterday:

    42 = 6/sqrt(5-1)*14

    I pondered for a while afterwards, and the odds of working the lottery balls to A2LU&E using just +,-,*,/,sqrt—with no rounding or truncation—were probably no better than one in three. I got lucky over the keyboard.

    Sometimes this game is also played with factorial. This isn’t normally a huge boon, because mostly factorial makes giant numbers—almost always including at least one singular prime-factor between N/2 and N—so you can’t use (non-truncating) sqrt to crush these huge values down again to a pittance.

    But hell’s bells! With this ordinarily impotent Ginsu knife, you get TWO new solutions for this particular challenge:

    42 = (14-6-1)!/5! = (6+1^14)!/5!

    Yes, I know, 1^14 is not purdy.

    Here’s another one that was a near miss (one lottery ball changed slightly):

    42 = (sqrt(15-6)!+1)!/5!

    Three factorials!!! (Precisely, three non-idempotent factorials!!! Because 1!, 2!, sqrt(0), sqrt(1) are not allowed.)

    Sure helps that 42 is the product of consecutive integers. Sure helps that this pair of integers is adjacent to a ball we actually drew.

    The near solution deceives the mind for a moment, because:

    42 = (sqrt(14-5)!+1)!/(6-1)! // use 1 twice
    42 = (sqrt(14-5)!+1)!/5! // use 5 twice, 6 not at all

    That was fun.

    But writing “McDavid lottery win day #2: the unboxing video, in which you rent a Suncor truck just to cart off the gleefully torn cardboard”—now I can die happy. (Yes, it improved slightly overnight, as curries do.)

    Everyone in Edmonton immediately recognized this as a Suncor bitumen truck, right? There are some references one must either get, or pretend to get, to maintain good standing in the local community. I was personally picturing the Komatsu 980E-4. (With a horn-tooting driver, if that matters.)

  62. pts2pndr says:

    OriginalPouzar: I think you are having some fun but I’m wondering if you do think that Krill has a shot at the NHL in his first year pro? I think we are looking at a couple of years of AHL development time for Maksimov.

    If he does “make it”, he’s going to score some goals with that shot – I’m not sure about Calder level amount of goal but, hey, you never know – he’s a driven kid from accounts, looking to improve and work on his game.

    Management should staple Safin to him at rookie camp.

    I have followed him since the young stars tournament in Penticton. I also was lucky enough to see Hall, Eberle etc. Maksimov has a very quick and accurate release! He is a shoot first player and in ways reminds me of a Mike Bossey? Given the opportunity I believe in his potential. His skating is excellent and speed was equal, to or better than Yamamoto. I think he may of hit the discount bin in the draft due to a certain extent theRussian factor.

  63. Scungilli Slushy says:

    pts2pndr: I believe it has to do with culture. OurNorth American culture dictates you do not question the coach!The European attitude/culture is more cooperative and refined. Questioning the coach is a more accepted norm. I am not sure I explained this very clearly. I picked up on this while hostingstudents from abroad. I can see where there could be a comunication problem with negative results.

    The Oilers have a longstanding issue with this. I think especially with anyone from the former USSR.

    I also see it as a communication issue. I read somewhere about Babcock’s relationship with Datsyuk. It wasn’t cookie cutter. Babcock accommodated him off the ice in listening to him (granted he was a star) still my impression was that it was often, many times a week say.

    I was once told while travelling that Canadians weren’t polite. Quite surprising, it had to do with when we said thanks when ordering at the bar. Small cultural differences create large impressions.

    I don’t think with players like Yak, Slepy, Yak 2 the Oilers find a relationship the players value enough. Certainly the player has a role, but so many failures in I have often said the Oilers drafting a ‘Russian ‘ is a wasted pick.

    Better luck with Finns, Czechs and Swedes, I believe because the cultural mindset is more similar (temperament and hockey) and the OBC played with those nationalities successfully on the team. Maybe the OBC matters less now but it’s not clear to me yet.

    I don’t mean to generalize but I think a pattern is there to see.

  64. VOR says:

    v4ance:
    VOR,

    Easily covered his draft bet and the bet for his draft class for the organization.My philosophy would be that a draft that turns out over 400 games played or 200 career points would be covering the bet for an entire draft.Anything over that is a complete victory for the amateur procurement group.

    *EDIT* Looking back over the data, a better cutoff for games played would be around ~600 GP for a successful draft class.

    The problem is this means that long stay 3rd and fourth liners would make a draft acceptable. So by your terms Kyle Brodziak means the 2003 draft was a success for the Oilers.

    I am not saying I disagree with you. However, good luck convincing people Kyle Brodziak belonged in the first round in 2003.

  65. New Improved Darkness says:

    Well, sqrt and ! can work together a wee bit. I was wrong.

    42 = sqrt(8!*9!)/5!/4!

    Don’t ask me how I came up with that. MIND BLOWN.

    [edit]

    Yes, that was 42—by way of 14,631,321,600. Talk about taking the long way around.

    Also:

    42 = sqrt(8!*9!)/5!/sqrt(16)!

    Unlike the abnormally clustered 4-5-8-9, 5-8-9-16 looks like a perfectly normal set of lottery balls.

  66. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Bouchard is a seriously talented player who has a nice toolkit. He has no big maybes. Defensive coverage for his path isn’t a big one to me.

    If he was better he wouldn’t have been there at 10. I’m quite excited about his future on his own merits, my worry lies in a team that has given me too many self inflicted injuries. I think the Oilers were very lucky given they were going to spend if he didn’t fall.

  67. Professor Q says:

    pts2pndr: I have followed him since the young stars tournament in Penticton. I also was lucky enough to see Hall, Eberle etc. Maksimov has a very quick and accurate release!He is a shoot first player and in ways reminds me of a Mike Bossey?Given the opportunity I believe in his potential. His skating is excellentand speed was equal, to or better than Yamamoto. I think he may of hit the discount bin in the draft due toa certain extent theRussian factor.

    Which is odd, seeing as he’s Canadian.

  68. Professor Q says:

    OriginalPouzar: I think you are having some fun but I’m wondering if you do think that Krill has a shot at the NHL in his first year pro? I think we are looking at a couple of years of AHL development time for Maksimov.

    If he does “make it”, he’s going to score some goals with that shot – I’m not sure about Calder level amount of goal but, hey, you never know – he’s a driven kid from accounts, looking to improve and work on his game.

    Management should staple Safin to him at rookie camp.

    I think that could have good results. Young, big, skilled, and from the CHL. Hopefully become contributors in the coming years, of course, as is the hope for all draft picks (or should be).

    Maybe, hopefully, they can help each other bond and improve, along with Benson, Yamamoto, and Puljujärvi. Winging it!

  69. Wilde says:

    New Improved Darkness,

    The consequences of the horn-tooting dichotomy is like the ocean between post-meal belching practices.

  70. Wilde says:

    Evan Bouchard is an early birthday fellas

  71. OriginalPouzar says:

    pts2pndr: I believe it has to do with culture. OurNorth American culture dictates you do not question the coach!The European attitude/culture is more cooperative and refined. Questioning the coach is a more accepted norm. I am not sure I explained this very clearly. I picked up on this while hostingstudents from abroad. I can see where there could be a comunication problem with negative results.

    Did Aberg question the coach?

  72. pts2pndr says:

    Professor Q: Which is odd, seeing as he’s Canadian.

    With predjudice sometimes the name will suffice. It is one of the reasons many immigrants changed the spelling of their names! I don’t understand it and have zero tollerance for it but I have observed enough to know that it is real. Living in Trump land in the sixties, it was not uncommon to hear if it ain’t white it ain’t right!

  73. OriginalPouzar says:

    pts2pndr: I have followed him since the young stars tournament in Penticton. I also was lucky enough to see Hall, Eberle etc. Maksimov has a very quick and accurate release!He is a shoot first player and in ways reminds me of a Mike Bossey?Given the opportunity I believe in his potential. His skating is excellentand speed was equal, to or better than Yamamoto. I think he may of hit the discount bin in the draft due toa certain extent theRussian factor.

    I agree with most of this and have stated that the Oilers haven’t had a forward with a shot like Maksimov’s since Jason Arnott – not to mention he loves to shoot and works hard to get open for the shot (like Ovechkin does).

    I think he has potential as well – as I said, if he makes it, he’s going to score some goals.

    Just not sure if straight to the NHL from junior is going to be the path taken.

    With respect to the “Russian factor” – he was born in Canada (although associates with Russia for international play).

  74. godot10 says:

    VOR:
    For years I followed college hockey very seriously.

    I mention this because it was at a college game in St. Cloud, Minnesota that I first asked a scout to explain how he went about judging a player. It was the spring of 1996. The scout was a guy named Paul Anderson who I think was working for the Flyers at the time. He was in his sixties and had been scouting for decades.

    Paul was there because St. Cloud had a 19 year old player who had come out of nowhere to be a possible first round pick. I was underwhelmed and wanted Paul to explain the buzz to me. He was kind enough to take the time to do just that.

    He pointed out that this kid was NHL fast. “Draft speed,” he said. He also, according to Paul, had magic hands. “Draft skill,” he said. But this kid was also NHL sized and for a college player really aggressive. “Draft intensity.”

    Paul said the big thing was this kid was safe. He’d play in the NHL. Probably for a lot of games. He’d cover the bet and not make the scout that picked him look bad.

    “I like to look out past the end of the player’s career and guess how he’ll be remembered. Twenty years from now, long after he has retired, this kid will be remembered as a useful player, coach able, a great team mate. All in all a consummate professional. There is no danger at all that the team that drafts him will regret it.”

    I pointed out the kid didn’t have the offence to play in the NHL and would be at best a fourth line player.

    I will never forget what Paul said to me.

    “But he will be a hell of a fourth line player.”

    The kid didn’t go in the first but did go in the second round. And in 1997-1998 he had his Rookie season. While he was the best rookie on a truly terrible team and did get up to LT’s 1.90/Ev60 nobody could have guessed that as the 2018 season starts he’d be chasing membership in one of hockey’s most exclusive clubs.

    Now you can easily look the player up. There is more than enough detail for you to do so. I assume many of you won’t have to look him up. You will know off the top of your head who I am talking about.

    My real question is did that 19 year old college player cover his draft ranking? Was my friend Paul right? Twenty two plus years ago were we watching a hell of a fourth line NHL player?

    Should we judge that young man we watched in St. Cloud by the company he keeps as he climbs up the mountain to join the Gods of the sport we love?

    I was in a keeper league back then. I drafted him.

  75. godot10 says:

    jm363561: ======

    Yes, my view on Bouchard being older than most of his peers is a possible negative. Griffin Reinhart was outstanding in junior but, in hindsight, it was mainly because he was bigger and stronger than his opponents. Same, to a lesser extent, with DNurse. Others have commented on how old Bouchard looks for his age and when his peers catch up physically he may not look quite so impressive – there was a reason he fell down the draft. Hope I am wrong.

    On the positive side, they said the same about Aaron Ekblad…that he looked 25 with full man strength at 19.

    I don’t care what Bouchard does at camp. I would send him down before going to Europe.

  76. jtblack says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Drai’s rookie year:

    29 and Yak
    181 min
    CF% 49.7%
    HDSF% 40%
    GF% 16.7% (3-15)
    SH% 3.13
    SV% .857
    PDO 888

    That’s something.

    That is … funny? Sad? Hell of a team he (they) had behind them.

  77. pts2pndr says:

    OriginalPouzar: Did Aberg question the coach?

    He missed a practice. This should not result in the way he as handled. There is possibly more to this story but if so what has been done to resolve the problem? There is much we do not know,but by what we see there is definte reason to question!

  78. pts2pndr says:

    Just a thought! Players drafted in the first round are afforded greater opportunity to succeed. Is the reason that fewer players drafted after the first round succeed due to their skill level and or lack of opportunity?

  79. jtblack says:

    pts2pndr:
    Just a thought! Players drafted in the first round are afforded greater opportunity to succeed. Is the reason that fewer players drafted after the first round succeed due to their skill level and or lack of opportunity?

    It’s a combination of the two

  80. OriginalPouzar says:

    pts2pndr: He missedapractice. This should not result in the way he as handled. There is possibly more to this story but if so what has been done to resolve the problem? There is much we do not know,but by what we see there is definte reason to question!

    Well, yes, he missed that practice and, as I’ve said a bunch of times, that must be an absolute non-factor for the coaches at this point. If McLellan is “holding a grudge” then there is no point in having Aberg in the organization. It must be water under the bridge at this point.

    He was punished, its time to move on. I give the head coach the benefit of the doubt on this, for now.

  81. Ryan says:

    dustrock:
    That 5v5 number for Draisaitl is crazy, what a difference a year made for him.

    It’s like we have to take the 5v5 number but only in the season they are actually ready to play in the NHL ha ha ha

    He literally couldn’t skate. He looked like he was skating in quick sand. You could tell he could think the game at a high level, handle the puck exceptionally well, backhand it like it was on his forehand… protect the puck well…

    Draisaitl couldn’t get to the play.

    Thank Gord, he found that step.

  82. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    pts2pndr,

    Late to the party, but felt compelled to nettle away at a minor point.

    I know for a fact my ancestors, along with many others at the time from different tribes, had the O’- dropped from their names summarily by the border agents at the gates of Ellis Island to make their names easier to pronounce or to more readily conform.

    Not everyone chose to have their surnames mutilated.

  83. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Ryan,

    Any chance training fast-twitch muscle fibres is possible with relatively advanced aged athletes? Is there a ceiling on age?

    Or, to put another way, can we pair Looch with Drai’s off-season fitness trainer from the Czech Republic to improve his first step explosiveness?

  84. jp says:

    Professor Q: Which is odd, seeing as he’s Canadian.

    OriginalPouzar:

    With respect to the “Russian factor” – he was born in Canada (although associates with Russia for international play).

    Seems like some Russian Intrigue here.

    HockeyDB lists him as born in Concord, ON. Elite Prospects has his born in Moscow, Russia (and his nationality as Russia/Canada). He’s played in Canada at least since 2013, but internationally for Russia.

    Presumably he’s a dual citizen with Russian parent(s). Does anyone know more about the back story? Has he been in Canada his whole life?

    Did he choose to play for Russia cause he couldn’t make the Canadian U18 teams? (like Adam Deadmarsh). If so that’s odd too – doesn’t (didn’t?) Russia ding even guys who were developed in Russia and went to play in the CHL for their tournament rosters? So it seems surprising they’d add a guy who’d played exclusively in Canada his whole life to their Jr team.

    A quick google search didn’t answer any of these questions, so any insight would be great!

  85. JimmyV1965 says:

    Ryan: succeed.

    I might be wrong about this, but even in his rookie year was Drai not one of the faster skaters on the team when they did timed runs in practice?

  86. jp says:

    godot10: Eakins and McLellan killed Nugent-Hopkins offense with horrific and mediocre coaching.Nugent-Hopkins 5×5 offense was fine with Renney, Krueger, and Nelson.

    He will be awesome on wing with McDavid.Even mediocre coaching can’t kill his offense there, although if the coach stick an AHL RW on the line, it might.

    The Kruger year was actually the worst of his career.

    Overall, RNH’s 5×5/60 numbers do a very poor job supporting the horrific/mediocre coaching narratives.

  87. Bank Shot says:

    jp:
    Seems like some Russian Intrigue here.

    HockeyDB lists him as born in Concord, ON. Elite Prospects has his born in Moscow, Russia (and his nationality as Russia/Canada). He’s played in Canada at least since 2013, but internationally for Russia.

    Presumably he’s a dual citizen with Russian parent(s). Does anyone know more about the back story? Has he been in Canada his whole life?

    Did he choose to play for Russia cause he couldn’t make the Canadian U18 teams? (like Adam Deadmarsh). If so that’s odd too – doesn’t (didn’t?) Russia ding even guys who were developed in Russia and went to play in the CHL for their tournament rosters? So it seems surprising they’d add a guy who’d played exclusively in Canada his whole life to their Jr team.

    A quick google search didn’t answer any of these questions, so any insight would be great!

    He was born in Canada but grew up in Russia according to what I can find.

    He definitely has a non Canadian accent.

  88. Professor Q says:

    jp,

    I think he played in the GTHL, which quite a few Russian players specifically but those of other nationalities move to Toronto to play in (and go to private schools etc.). Younger Svechnikov moved to Michigan with his mother for a similar reason, to continue training at the top before getting into the OHL.

    As for Maksimov, I remembered a bio I read a few years ago about him being born in Ontario, raised in Moscow, but returning to go to a private school and play in the GTHL.

    https://edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/nhl/cult-of-hockey/kirill-maksimov

    Not a Parise or Stastny situation where the adopted country is represented, nor a Hull situation where the player was spurned by their home and preferred country, nor an Oleksiak situation where the mind could not be made up and then the switch finally made to support his sister and to go to a club he could make (Canada), but sort of a “represents the country he grew up in, even if a dual citizen” situation, to the best of my knowledge.

  89. VOR says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    Ryan,

    Any chance training fast-twitch muscle fibres is possible with relatively advanced aged athletes?Is there a ceiling on age?

    Or, to put another way, can we pair Looch with Drai’s off-season fitness trainer from the Czech Republic to improve his first step explosiveness?

    I know you didn’t ask me. However, the simple answer is yes you can train fast twitch fibres at Milan Lucic’s age.

    I want to clear up two common misconception before I go on.

    There aren’t two types of muscle fibres in the human body. Morphologically there is a gradient from slow twitch fibres which are red, thin, and loaded with mitochondria to fast twitch fibres that are thick, white and have nearly no mitochondria. The former are called Type I fibres, the latter Type IIb or IIx. There are intermediate types. For now let’s focus on IIa. These are very thick fibres, pink in colour, with an intermediate number of mitochondria.

    While the ratio of fibres is determined by genetics. The phenotype is highly variable. It is a practical impossibility to recruit 100% of your fibres of any type. So a person with 40% fast twitch fibres who had recruited 80% of them would be as explosive as somebody who had 60% fast twitch fibres but only recruited 50% of them. Training matters.

    Can you recruit fast twitch fibres in your thirties? Sure. And in your 40s and 50s and 60s and 70s and 80s. Is it as easy as it was at 20? Of course not.

    But to be a faster skater you need more than 1 type of fast twitch fibre. IIb is the fibre linked with sprinting, throwing, jumping, and weight lifting. A fast first step is reliant on Type IIb. But winning a race from one end of the ice to the other takes Type IIA the fibre of the long sprints, the 1K bike race, rowing, etc. Power over time.

    You don’t train these two types of fibre the same way.

    For that first step you’d do PAP supported by sprinting and Olympic Lifting. For the end to end race you’d do lots of reps very fast, sport specific training with challenges, and supplemental sports like rowing. You’d throw in box jumping to unite the types.

    But then each athlete is different. Yoga, Pilates, tai chi, medicine ball/exercise ball may be necessary for flexibility and to improve core strength. And on and on.

  90. theDjdj says:

    leadfarmer:
    OriginalPouzar,

    Uggh. A later birthday should never be a positive.Defensemen nature at their own damn pace and nothing you can do will speed that up.Later birthday means one thing and one thing only, a potentially lower ceiling than someone 9 months younger

    Your comment contradicts itself, no? If you recognise that defensemen mature largely arbitrarily then surely an earlier birthday has little bearing on ceiling

  91. godot10 says:

    jp: The Kruger year was actually the worst of his career.

    Overall, RNH’s 5×5/60 numbers do a very poor job supporting the horrific/mediocre coaching narratives.

    He was playing with one shoulder (he had a torn labrum) during the Krueger season. At one point, he and Gagner were the only “healthy” centres on the team…and Nugent-Hopkins wasn’t healthy.

    It was far from the worst of a year. He played with courage and determination, nursing a serious injury.

  92. Wilde says:

    Aberg-Khaira-Caggiula randomly smashed Filip Forsberg’s line in this game I’m reviewing, not even exaggerating. Punched them into the NST line tool and only found 18 minutes, but the winger set has a hundred decent minutes together(69-71 Fenwick for; 22-15 high danger and 6-6 goals), could run them on the Brodziak line.

    Or just keep the whole trio together if you’re doing a Strome in the top 6 setup.

  93. OilSlickster says:

    VOR,

    Please reach out to Milan !!

  94. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bank Shot: He was born in Canada but grew up in Russia according to what I can find.

    He definitely has a non Canadian accent.

    This is my understanding as well and I’m confident that he got “dinged” by the Russian management team for leaving Russia for Canada which is why he didn’t make the World Junior Team last year or get invited to their camp.

    We’ll see if he makes the team this coming year – unless he has a huge regression this coming season, he should be a lock for the team on merit, however, you never know with the Russian teams (although they put Samorukov on the team last year even though he crossed the Atlantic to play in the OHL).

    As an aside, Niagra acquired Ivan Lodina from Eerie – might be a linemate of Maksimov this coming year.

  95. leadfarmer says:

    theDjdj,

    No. They stated that Bouchard was picked because he was older and closer to the NHL which is rather silly. We have enough data that shows younger players in their draft year have higher equivalcies.
    If Bouchard isn’t in the league in 2 years, which is quite expected in my point of view, what do they do with him?

  96. jp says:

    Bank Shot,

    Professor Q,

    Thanks for the extra info. Makes sense.

  97. jp says:

    godot10: He was playing with one shoulder (he had a torn labrum) during the Krueger season.At one point, he and Gagner were the only “healthy” centres on the team…and Nugent-Hopkins wasn’t healthy.

    It was far from the worst of a year.He played with courage and determination, nursing a serious injury.

    Courage and determination, that’s a new one. So you think the rest of the numbers fit the narrative nicely?

  98. OriginalPouzar says:

    leadfarmer:
    theDjdj,

    No.They stated that Bouchard was picked because he was older and closer to the NHL which is rather silly.We have enough data that shows younger players in their draft year have higher equivalcies.
    If Bouchard isn’t in the league in 2 years, which is quite expected in my point of view, what do they do with him?

    Did they say they picked him because he was older and closer to the NHL? I don’t recall them actually saying this but they only bring up his age when asked about him being on the team or related questions.

    From what I have read and seen, they say they picked him because, not only was he the best player available at the spot but he also checked so many boxes of team need. The fact that he may be closer to the NHL seems like a bonus but not a reason they chose him over a guy like Dobson or Whalstrom.

  99. Ryan says:

    JimmyV1965: I might be wrong about this, but even in his rookie year was Drai not one of the faster skaters on the team when they did timed runs in practice?

    I might be wrong too, but I thought that was during a skills comp during his sophomore season.

    Either way, the reason he looked so slow during his rookie season wasn’t his top end speed.

    There are some big players that have decent top end speed (if they’re fresh), but don’t accelerate quickly. On top of that if the coast a lot or play too long of shifts, they’ll look really slow.

    Contrast that with a guy like McDavid and it’s partly his ridiculous acceleration that make him such a threat. Two strides and he’s going full speed.

  100. who says:

    OriginalPouzar: Did they say they picked him because he was older and closer to the NHL?I don’t recall them actually saying this but they only bring up his age when asked about him being on the team or related questions.

    From what I have read and seen, they say they picked him because, not only was he the best player available at the spot but he also checked so many boxes of team need.The fact that he may be closer to the NHL seems like a bonus but not a reason they chose him over a guy like Dobson or Whalstrom.

    I’ve never seen Bouchard play so don’t have a very strong opinion on him. The only negatives I can think of are SOME questions about forward skating and his age. I certainly don’t view his age at the draft as a positive. In fact his age and the minutes he played in London take some of the shine off his numbers in my opinion.
    I did see Dobson at the Memorial Cup and was very impressed. Would have been a good pick at 10OV. Bouchard will probably turn out to be a good pick as well but I am not fully on board until I actually see him play.

  101. Ryan says:

    VOR,

    Yes, the major determinants are age and genetics.

    Lucic is getting older while the game is getting faster.

    Here’s a cool graph: http://www.sportingintelligence.com/2015/07/20/sprinters-dont-improve-after-30-gatlins-feats-are-incredible-200701/

    For 100m sprinters, surprisingly the precipice in this graph lies between 30 and 31.

  102. Scungilli Slushy says:

    OilSlickster:
    VOR,

    Please reach out to Milan !!

    And the Oilers

  103. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Bouchard is 2.5 months older than Dobson. Is that really a big deal?

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