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10-29-2004, 02:41 PM
Larry Melnyk
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Gloomsville, USA
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Originally Posted by Kubera55
Just chiming in with my two cents . . .

The North American thing is a big deal. Lundqvist has never played on an NHL sized rink before. He's never played in a game whistled by NHL referees. He's never had guys like KT and Holik crashing into his crease. He's never been challenged to a fight on a hockey rink.

Like it or not, these things happen in NA hockey, and not in the SEL. I'm not even talking about a qualitative difference (even though there is one). I'm talking about a distinctly different experience and skill set.

How is he going to react when those big PF's come crashing into him shift-after-shift-after-shift? Is he going to lose it and start taking retaliatory minors? Or is he going to get skittish? Or can he handle the physical play? How will the smaller rink and faster game effect his reflexes and positioning?

No one knows, not even Lundqvist. And while we are all very excited about him, I think it's not unwarranted to list Montoya ahead of him. Montoya is four years younger and well versed in the NA game. While his resume isn't as long or as distinguished as Lundqvists as-a-whole, he has done far more at this age than Lundqvist had in his draft year. That should factor in.

Suffice to say, we're all hoping Lundqvist can translate his SEL dominance into NHL dominance. But it's hardly a given that he will.
I think you have some good points but also feel you are selling Lundqvist short...

When's the last time a Blackburn, a Dunham, a Montoya, any goalie for that matter was challenged to a fight..This is a total non-issue to me....

But I think you got a major point on the PF issue and how Lundqvist reacts to consistent banging and screening will be very impotant...But everything he has shown so far points to him as a very focused and poised goalie in the SEL and in International games..We Shall see.....

The smaller rink will probably be an adjustment, nothing more, especially with the new rules that will increase the room beyond the net and limit the stickhandliong and roaming of the goaltender...

And is the NHL a faster game now?....What I've seen the past few years is a declining borefest that moves at a snail's pace, even in the POs....Positioning and systems are the key...Just like in the SEL...

I'm not saying Lundqvist is the better prospect then Montoya (but I think he is! , but I am saying there should be just as many questions about Montoya as there are about Lundqvist...Lundqvist's game has continued to improve in leaps and bounds every year, will Montoya's?

And I do agree that it's not a given, but the I think the prospects are mighty bright...

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