General Talk '12 — Russia
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05-14-2012, 10:11 PM
Join Date: May 2011
Originally Posted by
This is so wrong to bring Ovechkin and Semin right now on so many levels. Let me list them:
1. Chemistry right now is undeniable. The team gelled really well, why play with it now?
2. Ovechkin never performed well for team Russia on any levels. He is easily shut down by top defensive teams. The only important goal he scored for team Russia which I remember was in 2006 versus Canada. That was more than 6 years ago. One can say that he dished an assist to Semin against Canada in 2008 final but it was just an assist.
3. Ovechkin and Malkin on the same team have never been successful.
4. The only time Ovechkin won anything was when he was playing secondary roles on team Russia.
5. Every time team Russia relied on him as an offensive weapon team Russia failed (2005 Juniors, bunch of WC's)
1. I haven't watched all WC games, but I had the impression that Team Russia plays with 1.5 lines that can score. Yes, Malkin is awesome, and his line is on fire, but Datsyuk is struggling mightily, and the only guy who produces on the second line is Kuznetsov. The fourth line, on the other hand, combined for 0 points in 7 games, which included playing against Italy and Denmark.
2. Yes, the old coach seemed to have been clueless on how to use Ovechkin. When he imported the whole Caps line (Ovechkin-Fedorov-Semin), Ovechkin produced very well (6g+6a in 9gp in 2008, 4 gwg in the preliminary stage in 2010). Otherwise, it seemed that neither Ovechkin nor his partners had a clue. In 2011, it was painful to see how many good passes from Ovechkin were wasted, and how many times he did not get the puck in a good position. In 2007, Ovechkin played on the fourth line, and that's after being the best LW in NHL for two seasons. Let's hope coach Bill does have a clue on how to use Ovechkin.
4,5 - Ovechkin's only WC gold came in 2008, when his line (Ovechkin-Fedorov-Semin) was easily the best one on the team. They had 12 points each and were +11 each, which is pretty insane (how about this poor D by Ovechkin and Semin, yeah). In the playoffs that year, Ovechkin collected 4 pts and assisted on Kovalchuk's GWG in the final.
Overall, I think that Ovechkin+Semin for the playoffs is a bet. We will see how it plays out, but we will never be able to know whether they fit with the team etc., because three games is too small sample.
I think this bet is a reasonable one to take, because the Russian D and goalies seem rather good, but half of the offense comes from Malkin. If things get tight, I can see Team Russia needing a goal or two from someone not named Malkin.
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