Swiss hockey players in NHL/AHL
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03-15-2009, 06:41 PM
Join Date: May 2008
This is a really interesting thread.
Unfortunately, it is true that Swiss prospects are massively underrated in North America. Players like Sbisa and Weber are helping to overcome this perception, however, even they are considered "legitimate" prospects because they have commited to coming over and playing in the CHL - to huge success.
Switzerland needs to focus on becoming far more competitive at a under 18 and under 20 level, IMO. These tournaments are massively important to Canadians, for example, and many hockey fans and scouts would even consider them far more telling than the World Championships each year during the NHL playoffs. During the under 20's, all of Canada is glued to their screens to see the next stars of the world - like Forsberg, Gaborik, Erik Johnson, Bure, Mogilny, Tavares, and Hedman. Even players like Tartar this season (possibly, not even a first round selection this June), become household names over Christmas each year.
I was very glad to see the Swiss return to the top flight this season, however now they need to prove that they have enough talent to compete with teams like Slovakia (4th this year) every year. Then perhaps people will see them as developing top level talent, which in my humble opinion, they actually are doing already. If the Swiss were to medal in the under 18's for the next two or three years, the number of scouts in this country would increase exponentially!
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