: Player Discussion:
Olympics in Sochi 2014
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11-27-2011, 05:04 PM
J17 Vs Proclamation
Join Date: Oct 2004
Originally Posted by
I agree with your judgements of those players.
But that's still not very impressive compared to the other gold candidates teams. Who out of those players would you expect become say a 75+ pt player except for the obvious one in Bäckström? I would say Berglund has a shot, but he has looked poised for a breakout year forever and yet it never seems to happen. Love watching Johansson, maybe him.. we'll see. To me Pääjärvi, Lander, Backlund, Hörnqvist, Josefson and Tedenby are all talented, but seem like second/third liners, although I really hope one or two of them surprises me. I believe we've come to expect too much of these guys because of WJC accomplishments where good defense, goaltending and general depth might have made us overrate the impact some of these guys will have in their prime.
Let's say the worst case scenario happens and players like the Sedins, Zetterberg and Franzén decline and none of the young forwards develop into a true top player in time for the 2014 Olympics. Then we would have Bäckström and Eriksson as the only real stars to carry the team up front. This is a worst case scenario which I don't expect will happen, but at the same time it isn't all that unlikely either in my opinion. The 2014 forwards might be the worst crop we've brought to an Olympic tournament in a long time.
We have got great depth all of a sudden, but that doesn't help an Olympics team all that much. Anything can happen and a lot depends on a hot goalie but all in all, I'm not that optimistic about 2014.
Not to be über-pessimistic though, I'm kind of playing the devil's advocate here but I think it's an interesting discussion. How much do we really expect from these young forwards? To me they don't seem close to as good as our brilliant young defense with guys like OEL, Karlsson, Hedman and Larsson. Up front I only see Landeskog as being on their level even though as I said I do expect some of the other forwards to really become a "star" especially in the long run. Could be a couple of the guys you mentioned, could be a Silfverberg or a Järnkrok or a Zibanejad.. time will tell. Next year looks pretty good too with Forsberg, Collberg and Åberg coming through.
Players like Franzen, Zetterberg and Eriksson wern't stars at 20/21. The Sedin's have only been top tier forwards for the past 4-5 years. Things change and development time lines can be erratic and random.
The only top Swedish forward currently who was a legit star from the get-go was Backstrom, who happened to be the best Forward prospect from Sweden in a decade.
You have a plethora of talented young Forwards under 22. Johansson, Landeskog, Ziba, Jarnkrok, J Larsson, Pajaarvi, Backlund, Berglund, Tedenby, Kruger, Josefsson, Nyqvist plus various other promising players. I'd be willing to bet that from this large pool
atleast 4-5 will emerge as important Forwards for their respective NHL teams offensively. If you combine that with the 2012 draft talents and established players like Backstrom, Eriksson, Sedin's etc then you'll be very competitive.
Obviously the olympics are very competitive and Sweden won't be the favourite, but a world class D unit with excellent goaltending and an array of talented Forwards mean Sweden on paper is a major player in Sochi.
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