Should the Rangers target Filatov?
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12-27-2009, 05:13 PM
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Long Island/Plattsbu
Originally Posted by
Can we please, PLEASE grow brains and judge EACH player individually rather than assuming that because Nik Zherdev didn't fit "Torts' style" (I'd be more concerned with finding a way to get our players producing and consistently winning games than worrying about whether or not we're playing "Torts' hockey", by the way) no player of similar lineage will? Because, outside of 100% coincidentally having both been drafted by Columbus, one player has absolutely nothing to do with the other and can in no way be used as a benchmark for judging one another. The fact that a prospect needs to be North American to make you all comfortable with his "compete level" or commitment is absurd and the fact that you trace it all back to one year of Nik Zherdev even more so.
Besides anything else, a guy like Filatov is great for a puck possession system and would instantly be our second most talented option at forward. He's got vision, hands, patience and gamebreaking ability. A lot of things that we desperately need and, by all accounts, Filatov would much rather be playing in the NHL than the KHL.
The similarities don't just stop at being drafted by Columbus and being Russian. They're both top 10 picks(Z was 4th overall, Filatov 6th overall). They both didn't stick in the NHL as smoothly as they had hoped (given, Zherdev stuck but didn't exactly live up to high expectations, the jury's still out on Filatov, things still could've gone a lot better in his first taste of the NHL.)
Filatov was miserable in the NHL, and pretty much because he wasn't getting top 6 minutes and wasn't scoring. If this guy doesn't want to pay his dues, I'd question his attitude just like everyone questioned Zherdev's over somewhat mundane things.
Filatov is hardly CAPABLE of being a 3rd liner since his game in the defensive zone leaves much to be desired. His one way game was why things didn't go all that smooth under Hitchcock to begin with.
So I'm not just tying this together.
I'd just much rather model this team after teams that have had success recently, and they do not rely heavily on one-dimensional Russian players, which is what Filatov seems to be to me, and it's even what Kovalchuk is. Nowhere did I say all Russians are like that. Evgeny Malkin isn't your typical Russian player and I'm actually surprised with his defensive game. The majority are, though. Anisimov isn't, and I'm hoping Grachev can play well in his own end too. I already know Anisimov is capable of distributing the puck, playing two way hockey, and most importantly his head always appears to be in the game. When he's been demoted to the 4th line he just takes it in stride. He's mentally tough, which seems to be a rarity in eastern euro/russian players. I'd love for more players to break the stereotype but too often players live up to the stereotype. Until Filatov doesn't seem like a primadonna that isn't fully commited to doing whatever he needs to do to best suite him for the NHL, I'm not all that interested, especially if it means giving up high end prospects.
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