D Seth Jones - Portland Winterhawks (2013 Draft)
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04-04-2012, 10:45 AM
Join Date: Oct 2009
I would not consider a player being sent to the AHL as an 18YO/19YO as an
. It could actually be a career-ender, and most NHL teams know that. That is why it does not happen very often. In one respect, the AHL is full of pro-worthy (or nearly pro-worthy) talent. But in another respect, most of the guys in the AHL are *much* bigger, stronger, and older than those that would be in Major Junior hockey. That would be like throwing a small fish into a lake full of larger hungry fish. Those players tend to steamroll the younger, smaller guys. Only elite/semi-elite players are put into the AHL as 18YOs or 19YOs... and usually with the intent to not keep them there long... because most guys cannot handle it at those young ages.
In contrast, Major Junior hockey offers a similar age bracket and schedule. That tends to greatly help players develop their skills. Certainly, there are some players who play above the overall talent level of the league, but most do not. Seth is going to be a great pro player, but he still needs a lot of development for his game.
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