Will Wellwood Make The Show??
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01-21-2005, 07:47 PM
Join Date: Jun 2002
Having followed Quinn through his entire tenure as the canucks GM, I can support the argument that he does value size a lot... he's done that from day 1 as a canuck gm..
but he has also given small players a chance to succeed... he did that in Vancouver with Ronning. However Quinn doesn't seem to have too much patience with such players - either they step up right away, or he moves on.
Also I disagree with the comments that "many" young players make the NHL, with examples of St. Louis, Fleury, Sullivan, Samsonov, etc being used - this isn't the norm - there are many many more that never make it. When the average NHL size is over 6' it's obvious that the NHL is a game more geared towards bigger players, and clubs give bigger players more chances to make it to the NHL.
Wellwood IMO will get his chance in the NHL, and should get it with the Leafs... but whether he sticks is a different question. My guess is that before he can learn the NHL game, he'll be left on waivers or dealt by Quinn... then get on with another team that will give his "skill" a shot, like a young club that can give a roster spot (avoiding waivers) to a risk player, with a GM that has the patience (and owner's support) to allow a guy like Wellwood to develop.
Wellwood does have a lot going against him... the fact that he lacks size and speed is a huge hurdle to overcome, but not impossible. He definitely has the skill, but there are a lot more top 6 capable players in the NHL already (and many young ones that are getting there), then top 6 spots available, so Wellwood won't have an easy go at it making it to the big leagues.
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