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HF Article 01-16-2013 02:15 PM

2013 CHL Top Prospects Game: Bjorkstrand looks to display talent on bigger stage
 

Like a number of CHL teams, the Portland Winterhawks have sent multiple players to the Home Hardware CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game this year. Seth Jones has received the majority of the attention as both the captain of Team Orr and one of the top draft-eligibles for the 2013 NHL Draft, while his teammate Nicolas Petan is a familiar name for prospect watchers after helping Canada win the gold at last summer's Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament.



But there is another Portland Winterhawk at the Top Prospects Game who flies a bit under the radar.

Oliver Bjorkstrand might not be competing for the WHL scoring lead like Petan or have a World Junior gold medal like Jones, but in his first season playing in North America, the Danish right winger has quickly adapted to become a regular contributor on a deep Portland squad.… read more



More...

Daltonbror* 01-19-2013 06:32 AM

As a swede I wish him good luck! I am really excited hockey is growing in Denmark, in a few years I think you will be better than Norway.

Tobias 01-19-2013 05:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Daltonbror (Post 57829983)
As a swede I wish him good luck! I am really excited hockey is growing in Denmark, in a few years I think you will be better than Norway.

Ehm Norway is not better as of now, i would call it even. We always play close matches against Norway, usually without our top players.

andersej 01-20-2013 12:36 AM

ehm, let's be reality here... Norway is clearly better at the moment. Maybe in a best on best matchup it would be even, but we have yet to see that on the ice. There's a reason why Norway is ranked 8 and Denmark ranked 12.

Obviously Norway benefits from having their best players in European leagues like the KHL and SEL.

Number of players in respective leagues:

Norway:
SEL: 14
KHL: 3
NHL: 0
AHL: 0

Denmark:
SEL: 3
KHL: 0
NHL: 7 (with Frederik Andersen)
AHL: 2


No wonder Norway is getting better results, but I do believe they also have way better depth than Denmark over the last few years.

Tobias 01-20-2013 03:45 AM

Yes, Norway has way more depth, but that is evened out by our top talent. That's why I'd call it even ;)

TollefsenFan 01-20-2013 08:52 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by andersej (Post 57921489)
ehm, let's be reality here... Norway is clearly better at the moment. Maybe in a best on best matchup it would be even, but we have yet to see that on the ice. There's a reason why Norway is ranked 8 and Denmark ranked 12.

Obviously Norway benefits from having their best players in European leagues like the KHL and SEL.

Number of players in respective leagues:

Norway:
SEL: 14
KHL: 3
NHL: 0
AHL: 0

Denmark:
SEL: 3
KHL: 0
NHL: 7 (with Frederik Andersen)
AHL: 2


No wonder Norway is getting better results, but I do believe they also have way better depth than Denmark over the last few years.

Well u got a few good players in DEL. Those players should count ;) ?

Well our players are older than the danish, so in a few years i believe Denmark will be better. Not alot better, but still a little better. Unfortunatly for Denmark most of their best players are in NA. So a best on best game wouldnt be possible and Norway will therefore be favorites vs Denmark.

And i would also say that both teams lack depth on Ds and that rly hurt the teams. Both Denmark and Norway can put together two scoring lines and two defensive/grinder lines. So we got okey forwards and a few good goalies. Only defense is a major problem for both teams.

TollefsenFan 01-20-2013 09:03 AM

And one last thing. I think its rly cool that hockey is growing in Denmark. It makes international games so much cooler ;) Games vs Sweden and Denmark are just so epic :D

TollefsenFan 01-20-2013 11:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tobias (Post 57925185)
Yes, Norway has way more depth, but that is evened out by our top talent. That's why I'd call it even ;)

Nah I wouldnt say Denmark got alot of top end talent. Ur Nhlrs are not great goalscorers, but very all round players. Thats not bad at all, because guys like Nielsen, Hansen, Eller etc can do a rly good job defesivly, work hard all over the ice and score aswell. Still they are not as good offensivly as Thoresen and Zuccarello on big european ice. Thoresen helped out Norway big time in the olympics (5 point in 4 games) the 2010 whc with 6 points in 6 games and now last in the 2012 whc with 18 points in 8 games)

So the way i see it Denmark got depth, while Norway depends on a few individuals. Only problem with Denmarks depth is that half of the players play in NA.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Denmarks roster

I believe that Nicklas Jensen can become that top talent ur talking about, but he is still to young.

The way i see it Eller, Regin and Jensen are the best offensive players Denmark got, while Hansen, Nielsen and Boedker are more all rounders (2nd or 3rd liners). Can be used on pk, pp etc.

The bottom lines can be filled with players from swe1, swe2 and del.

On D u got Larsen + Ahlrs + swe 2 and that guy in DEL,

And u got a few okey goalies.

All in all u got depth. Thats not a problem at all. U just need to put together a real scoring line.

Justinov 01-20-2013 01:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TollefsenFan (Post 57928607)
Well u got a few good players in DEL. Those players should count ;) ?

Well our players are older than the danish, so in a few years i believe Denmark will be better. Not alot better, but still a little better. Unfortunatly for Denmark most of their best players are in NA. So a best on best game wouldnt be possible and Norway will therefore be favorites vs Denmark.

And i would also say that both teams lack depth on Ds and that rly hurt the teams. Both Denmark and Norway can put together two scoring lines and two defensive/grinder lines. So we got okey forwards and a few good goalies. Only defense is a major problem for both teams.

Yes defence is a real problem.
Denmark has Philip Larsen in NHL, the Lauridsen brothers in AHL (but how well they will play on big ice remains to be seen) and Jesper B Jensen in SEL (though Rögle soon counts as Allsvenskan). Rest is DEL, Allsvenskan or Al-Bank liga (though Mads Bødker and Stefan Lassen have played in SEL before).
Norway has Tollefsen and Holøs in SEL and with some NHL experience and then Trygg and Bonsaksen (though also Rögle) in SEL, but then a big hole to the rest.

Denmark-Norway could have a combined fine defence, but we can really only field 1 good, and one ok line on our own. The third line will always be problematic. Norways first line will be strongest (Tollefsen-Holøs), but the third line is more weak than the danish.

Norway looks stronger in goal right now:
Lars Haugen for Dynamo Minsk (KHL) - 93,8% saves
Lars Volden for Blues (SM-liiga) - 93,6% saves
Then experienced Pål Grotnes or young comet Steffen Søberg with 95,1% saves at the U20 as third keeper.

Denmark:
Frederik Andersen (Norfolk Admirals - now Anaheim): 92,4% saves in AHL
Simon Nielsen Lukko (Sm-liiga): 88,3%
Patrick Galbraith (Frölunda, SEL - Oskarshamm, Allsv): 84,3% - 91,4%

TollefsenFan 01-20-2013 02:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Justinov (Post 57943947)
Yes defence is a real problem.
Denmark has Philip Larsen in NHL, the Lauridsen brothers in AHL (but how well they will play on big ice remains to be seen) and Jesper B Jensen in SEL (though Rögle soon counts as Allsvenskan). Rest is DEL, Allsvenskan or Al-Bank liga (though Mads Bødker and Stefan Lassen have played in SEL before).
Norway has Tollefsen and Holøs in SEL and with some NHL experience and then Trygg and Bonsaksen (though also Rögle) in SEL, but then a big hole to the rest.

Denmark-Norway could have a combined fine defence, but we can really only field 1 good, and one ok line on our own. The third line will always be problematic. Norways first line will be strongest (Tollefsen-Holøs), but the third line is more weak than the danish. Norway looks stronger in goal right now:
Lars Haugen for Dynamo Minsk (KHL) - 93,8% saves
Lars Volden for Blues (SM-liiga) - 93,6% saves
Then experienced Pål Grotnes or young comet Steffen Søberg with 95,1% saves at the U20 as third keeper.

Denmark:
Frederik Andersen (Norfolk Admirals - now Anaheim): 92,4% saves in AHL
Simon Nielsen Lukko (Sm-liiga): 88,3%
Patrick Galbraith (Frölunda, SEL - Oskarshamm, Allsv): 84,3% - 91,4%

quality post.

1) And u mean third d pairing? And yeah our (norways) third d pairing isnt that good. Overall they played better than expected but still they screwed up from time to time.

2) Fredrik Andersen is alot bigger and therefore covers more of the goal. Only bad thing about Andersen is that he joined Anaheim. It will be hard for him to get a spot on the roster when both Hiller and Fasth plays for the club.

Haugen is smaller, faster and dosent give to many rebounds in dangerous area. I find it hard to compare those two guys, because they are so different.

Justinov 01-21-2013 09:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TollefsenFan (Post 57949045)
quality post.

1) And u mean third d pairing? And yeah our (norways) third d pairing isnt that good. Overall they played better than expected but still they screwed up from time to time.

2) Fredrik Andersen is alot bigger and therefore covers more of the goal. Only bad thing about Andersen is that he joined Anaheim. It will be hard for him to get a spot on the roster when both Hiller and Fasth plays for the club.

Haugen is smaller, faster and dosent give to many rebounds in dangerous area. I find it hard to compare those two guys, because they are so different.

Yes I meant 3d pairing - Norway have a huge 3'rd D pairing problem, but can field a very good 1'st D pair. Denmark has really only 1 good defender (Philip Larsen), but can avoid a total slump on the 3'rd D pair.

About the goalies it's just that all the Norwegian goalies seem in good form this season, whereas for Denmark only Frederik Andersen has played well (and still not as good as last year for Frölunda), while Simon Nielsen and Patrick Galbraith are worse than last year.
Not getting rebounds when you are playing as the inferior teams are hugely important. Frederik Andersen's playing style might be more suited to a solid defence around him (as he had in Frölunda)...being big but not as mobile as Haugen.
Haugen's goalie stats for Dynamo Minsk are really impressive this season.

Justinov 01-21-2013 09:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TollefsenFan (Post 57935099)
Nah I wouldnt say Denmark got alot of top end talent. Ur Nhlrs are not great goalscorers, but very all round players. Thats not bad at all, because guys like Nielsen, Hansen, Eller etc can do a rly good job defesivly, work hard all over the ice and score aswell. Still they are not as good offensivly as Thoresen and Zuccarello on big european ice. Thoresen helped out Norway big time in the olympics (5 point in 4 games) the 2010 whc with 6 points in 6 games and now last in the 2012 whc with 18 points in 8 games)

So the way i see it Denmark got depth, while Norway depends on a few individuals. Only problem with Denmarks depth is that half of the players play in NA.
.

It's true that Denmark still need a real goalscorer at NHL level. Frans Nielsen is still best with 17 goals last season. You are right that they are all solid defensive forwards with an offensive upside (Hansen, Nielsen, Eller, Regin, Bødker). Some of them might get a breakout-year (Mikkel Bødker most likely) but they are currently not close to Patrick Thoresen's quality (only Malkin was last WC :nod:) - but equal to Zuccarello in my oppinion as point producers if we combine big and small ice history.

The depth problem is that not only "half" the forwards play in NHL - it's the best half. Quality forwards left in Europe are Nichlas Hardt, Morten Madsen, and Nicklas Jensen (that soon will be playing in NHL). These three will probably decide whether Denmark will play olympics or not.....

Also Denmark also need a real hammer on the PP. I never stop being amazed when Morten Ask hammers goals in internationally, as a danger to all on PP (71 goals in 198 matches for Norway...astonishing). Without the existance of PP he would probably not even be on the norwegian squad :laugh:
Holøs also did havoc on PP last WC where Norway was internationally elite, and Denmark truly sucked.

TollefsenFan 01-21-2013 05:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Justinov (Post 58007899)
It's true that Denmark still need a real goalscorer at NHL level. Frans Nielsen is still best with 17 goals last season. You are right that they are all solid defensive forwards with an offensive upside (Hansen, Nielsen, Eller, Regin, Bødker). Some of them might get a breakout-year (Mikkel Bødker most likely) but they are currently not close to Patrick Thoresen's quality (only Malkin was last WC :nod:) - but equal to Zuccarello in my oppinion as point producers if we combine big and small ice history.

The depth problem is that not only "half" the forwards play in NHL - it's the best half. Quality forwards left in Europe are Nichlas Hardt, Morten Madsen, and Nicklas Jensen (that soon will be playing in NHL). These three will probably decide whether Denmark will play olympics or not.....

Also Denmark also need a real hammer on the PP. I never stop being amazed when Morten Ask hammers goals in internationally, as a danger to all on PP (71 goals in 198 matches for Norway...astonishing). Without the existance of PP he would probably not even be on the norwegian squad :laugh:
Holøs also did havoc on PP last WC where Norway was internationally elite, and Denmark truly sucked.

1) Yeah but on big ice i believe zook is better. On small i would much rather have Hansen, Nielsen etc.

2) I totally agree.
----------------------
And I would say better coaching is also needed. Just like in soccer, its the coachs fault if the team fails.

And finally i want to say im abit jealous considering the fact that u guys can produce so many NHLrs, while we cant :(

andersej 01-21-2013 11:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TollefsenFan (Post 58037209)
And finally i want to say im abit jealous considering the fact that u guys can produce so many NHLrs, while we cant :(

Zuke didn't fit well in the NHL, but Thoresen would still be a nice fit IMHO. Tollefsen, Holøs and Haugen could also have been in the NHL if they really wanted to. Do you have an idea as to why these players choose to return to Europe?

And on a related note, what kind of $$$ do your KHL players earn?

TollefsenFan 01-22-2013 06:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by andersej (Post 58066277)
Zuke didn't fit well in the NHL, but Thoresen would still be a nice fit IMHO. Tollefsen, Holøs and Haugen could also have been in the NHL if they really wanted to. Do you have an idea as to why these players choose to return to Europe?

And on a related note, what kind of $$$ do your KHL players earn?

Holøs left because the avs wanted bigger Ds. Tollefsen left because he was traded to the red wings and he dosent rly fit the red wings. Thoresen and Zuke both ended up on the bottom lines, while both players believe they belong on the top 6.

Thoresen earn about 12 mill nor kroner a year in SKA and he is the alternate captain. So I doubt that any NHL will give him that much :P

Zuccarello earns between 12-14 mill norske kroner after tax is payed.

Source
http://www.nettavisen.no/sport/vinte...cle3411753.ece

Justinov 01-22-2013 12:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TollefsenFan (Post 58070915)
Holøs left because the avs wanted bigger Ds. Tollefsen left because he was traded to the red wings and he dosent rly fit the red wings. Thoresen and Zuke both ended up on the bottom lines, while both players believe they belong on the top 6.

Thoresen earn about 12 mill nor kroner a year in SKA and he is the alternate captain. So I doubt that any NHL will give him that much :P

Zuccarello earns between 12-14 mill norske kroner after tax is payed.

Source
http://www.nettavisen.no/sport/vinte...cle3411753.ece

Quite amazing that Zuccarello earns the same or a bit more than Thoresen! Zuccarello is an amazing wing on big ice very suited to russian style of hockey; BUT

Thoresen is in my opinion a fantastic versatile player. His can play both center and wing, scores goals and bring on the assists and lead his team, while also being good defensively.

In KHL: Thoresen 14G 21A (0,85 point average) while Zuccarello 8G 13A (0,66 point average).

Tollefsen and Holøs are clearly good enough for NHL, but I totally understand they want to play important parts on their teams instead of playing as low pairing d-men.

TollefsenFan 01-22-2013 12:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Justinov (Post 58083899)
Quite amazing that Zuccarello earns the same or a bit more than Thoresen! Zuccarello is an amazing wing on big ice very suited to russian style of hockey; BUT

Thoresen is in my opinion a fantastic versatile player. His can play both center and wing, scores goals and bring on the assists and lead his team, while also being good defensively.

In KHL: Thoresen 14G 21A (0,85 point average) while Zuccarello 8G 13A (0,66 point average).

Tollefsen and Holøs are clearly good enough for NHL, but I totally understand they want to play important parts on their teams instead of playing as low pairing d-men.

Well Zuke got better numbers in the NHL and he is a younger player.

Justinov 01-27-2013 11:06 AM

Oliver Bjørkstrand had a fantastic night with his first hattrick for Portland Winterhawks in their 7-0 win. He is the leading rookie in WHL right now with 20G 20A in 42 games.

http://www.winterhawks.com/article/h...at-tc-saturday

BalticWarrior 01-27-2013 11:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Justinov (Post 58449293)
Oliver Bjørkstrand had a fantastic night with his first hattrick for Portland Winterhawks in their 7-0 win. He is the leading rookie in WHL right now with 20G 20A in 42 games.

http://www.winterhawks.com/article/h...at-tc-saturday

So Oliver with his first hatty in whl,lipsbergs also had one but that was while ago :laugh:

ImGoingNucks 01-27-2013 11:18 AM

In all honesty I just HATE Norway, you guys always seem to beat us on all levels.. So I would say Norway are better than us.

At Jr. level we seem to have better players but Norway AMAZING in goal. in the U20's we led the whole game, Norway ties it up and bags it in OT.. DK had 4-5 shots in OT Norway 1 and they scored on that ONE shot..

ALWAYS happens..

On senior level, yeah we are close, but the beating Norway gave us last year with a decent danish squad tells me they are MUCH better..

Our NHL'ers haven't all turned out as I wished..

Im jelous of Norway... No point in having NHL'ers if they are not succesfull!

BalticWarrior 01-27-2013 11:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by VikingNuck (Post 58449793)
In all honesty I just HATE Norway, you guys always seem to beat us on all levels.. So I would say Norway are better than us.

At Jr. level we seem to have better players but Norway AMAZING in goal. in the U20's we led the whole game, Norway ties it up and bags it in OT.. DK had 4-5 shots in OT Norway 1 and they scored on that ONE shot..

ALWAYS happens..

On senior level, yeah we are close, but the beating Norway gave us last year with a decent danish squad tells me they are MUCH better..

Our NHL'ers haven't all turned out as I wished..

Im jelous of Norway... No point in having NHL'ers if they are not succesfull!

So from a Danish perspective would you rather have your best players in SEL and KHL like norway?

ImGoingNucks 01-27-2013 11:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Helo (Post 58449869)
So from a Danish perspective would you rather have your best players in SEL and KHL like norway?

That's a big fat YES!!!

At least players like Eller, Regin, Andersen and so forth :)

BalticWarrior 01-27-2013 11:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by VikingNuck (Post 58449969)
That's a big fat YES!!!

See,back here in Latvia everyone wants our best junior players to go to NA as soon as possible and if theres even the slightest chance get into NHL.

ImGoingNucks 01-27-2013 11:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Helo (Post 58450061)
See,back here in Latvia everyone wants our best junior players to go to NA as soon as possible and if theres even the slightest chance get into NHL.

It's the glamour of it.. I think the same is the case in Denmark...

I still have hope for Boedker...

Nielsen and Hansen are Solid...

Larsen had a great rookie season...

But players like Eller and Regin will never get the chance and Andersen has too much competetion..

Jensen is the one im hoping for..

I think the same is going to happen to Björkstrand, he is not suited for the NHL.. he is too small...

Justinov 01-27-2013 11:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Helo (Post 58450061)
See,back here in Latvia everyone wants our best junior players to go to NA as soon as possible and if theres even the slightest chance get into NHL.

well i would really love to see some danish players in the KHL, and why not Dinamo Riga :) ! Many of the danish players like Eller and Regin will be very suited for it.

Bødker, Hansen and Nielsen have what it takes in the NHL.

Larsen might be on the light side for NHL, but lets see this season out.


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