: Prospect Info:
Kings CHL and NCAA Prospect Update Thread II
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04-28-2012, 10:24 PM
GO KINGS GO!!!!!!!!
Join Date: Mar 2008
Originally Posted by
Im a little confused on Toffoli... I have seen him at two straight development camps, along with two training camps.. Guy has not really impressed me at all in the times I have watched him. Seems like a lazy player, hanging around outside the blue lines. Does not play with a whole lot of intensity, more about trying to pick his spots. Which is ok I suppose.. in junior hockey. Minor league pro and the NHL are no joke. They are a different animal.
Not to mention I cannot really get over how he was bypassed by Team Canada twice for the world junior team. Does that really happen by accident? Or is there more to this?
Bottom Line: It is funny to read on these boards about players who put up big numbers in Major Junior in Canada, which by the way I do not argue is the best developmental league in the world, and rightfully so. But this kid is not ready for the NHL right now, nor will he be ready next year. He needs to develop in the AHL and see what kind of player he is. That's my take anyways, we have other prospects who are paying their dues and should be rewarded, and not hand kids playing time based on their draft positions. RANT OVER.
By the way, Tonelli I respect your opinion immensely. You and I tend to agree on alot of our prospects.. who has a shot and who doesnt. Has toffoli changed as a player this year? Or is it more of a byproduct of being an older guy playing in the OHL, which is a very high scoring run and gun league, and beating average goaltenders with a heavy shot? Thoughts? Love to hear what you think..
I appreciate your opinion and think you have made a few valid points in regards to what is the cause for Toffi's development. It is true that overagers tend to do allot better in the Jr leagues but while that is true elite type players tend to do so as well.
Te trick is determining which player has the goods and which is simply benefiting from physical dominance or at least somewhat so.
I first have to admit that as a former 67 I tend to bleed red white and black so I have to warn you to take this one with a grain of salt. I spend allot of time, too much time around the team and have watched TT a ton since his entry into the league. I have seen him play against the very best of the players in jr's and he is in my opinion one of the top 3 prospects outside of the NHL.
Too high of praise? Maybe but here is why.
TT has developed his skating from Luc's days in Hull to more in line with Luc's days with Gretzky. He isn't slow by any means and has worked very hard on his skating but the key to his improvement over this past season has been the effort he has put into working on his balance.
There are several prospects who have begun working on different balance oriented technique's but TT has taken to this aspect of his skating development like no other. The proof is in the pudding, if you watch him skate today which could be possible you will see a young man who has broken out of his kid level skating and now has the grit wheels and balance to skate with NHL players.
The second reason I feel so strongly about TT is that he never backs down along the boards. The kid puts his head down and goes to work. While he won't be Shane Doan or JT etc the kid is very hard to knock off the puck and that is a good thing. His natural talent is in his shot and his vision and when he is along the boards he uses his vision and grit to make smart O minded plays. They may not always click but he does have a solid skillset in these two disciplines.
He has also picked up some excellent weight on his shot both wrister and slap. That is a big bonus because he still needs work imo in how quickly he gets these shots off. The one area that I think he needs work on is becoming quicker in releasing his shot(s) and also in driving the net (knowing when to or doing it with a little more frequency).
I guess I would call his game today as a blend between a young (think Hull version) of Luc and a sort of todays version of JW in his ability to create space. In a year, maybe two I can see TT being one of the better young wingers in the NHL (rookie/maybe sophomore). He needs to work on those two areas to become a day to day NHL player imo but the kid is solid everywhere else.
He will need the typical development time that all kids (save the rare few) do to pick up the speed game in the NHL but he is a fast learner so it could come quickly.
As to his being overlooked for the wjc's. F the people who are allowed to select the players for these things even when they fall in our favor. They are nothing more than a popularity contest for players who get the most media or play in bigger markets. That is why every year there is a kid who "comes out of nowhere" to become a great young player in the NHL.
The pundits never heard of them or so they will say but everyone else has. TT didn't get selected over a couple of kids who as their play proved out weren't as good as him or at least weren't as talented offencively as him.
So has TT turned into a fire breathing beater who can score at will? No and that isn't what you were asking but he is rapidly becoming a finesse player with a nice amount of edge who can skate well enough to be an NHL regular and score go to goals for us.
I think he is close to ready but I may be too close to say how much so. I still say put him on the Monarchs to start the season and then reward him with a call up from time to time depending on his play and sooner rather than later (within a year) he should be contributing to our top 6 imo.
I feel pretty strongly about TT but again, take it with a grain of salt. I am a homer and this kid does some pretty incredible things.
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