MHL: Russian major junior hockey?
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08-21-2012, 10:46 PM
Join Date: Feb 2012
Originally Posted by
Neither. Closest western comparison would be sports academies, where players are recruited at very young age, and along with their age group they go through DUSH school. Kids still go to normal public schools, however they can be exempt from a lot of things to attend tournaments. They play with their year, unless they excel and can play with older competition. They play tournaments.
Often players switch 'schools', for example from Spartak to CSKA if that player is promised a better situation or a coach. Or if daddy can afford better coaches or has better relationships and so on.
Drafting players from MHL or KHL is subjective. Some KHL teams will give MANY more opportunities (usually poorer teams), other teams will barely play their youth at all. So just because a kid plays in MHL, doesn't mean he is not very talented. It could be because of circumstances. Sometimes, in the case of Nichushkin for example, he is a top prospect, but his MHL season was awful due to some circumstances such as coaching.
Finally, it all comes down to contract and team's willingness to let a player go when drafted in NA. If a kid is under contract and his team doesn't want him to leave to CHL- it will not happen. If there is no contract, he may do as he pleases. Sometimes, a player has a contract but the KHL organization may be willing to sell his rights or let him go to NA.
The catch is that kids who want to join MHL are often asked to sign 5 year contracts with KHL organizations.
Thank you. This is very helpful. I noticed from your post that you're from Toronto - so is being part of a "school" in Russia the same as playing for, say, the Marlboros through their different levels of hockey?
How do you end up on an MHL team - do you just go to who ever takes you or is there some sort of draft?
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