Mika Zibanejad is the real deal.
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09-03-2012, 12:34 PM
Join Date: Oct 2010
Originally Posted by
Minister of Offence
But that's none of the reason he has star potential. Players that dominate the puck generally display superior hockey sense (Crosby, Datsyuk, or an Alfredsson), and although I think people go way too far knocking the kids on ice smarts...it isn't one of his defining qualities. I'd compare his skill set and style of play to Ovechkin, a lesser version but he still approaches shifts similarly. Ovechkin doesn't dominate the puck....he grabs it and whistles it on net at any chance he gets, and if he sees someone guarding the shot he makes a one on one play. His game isn't complicated at all.
The best I've ever seen from Zibanejad is he's getting pucks on net as often as he can...and he's got the ability to do this. Not that he doesn't have the skating to beat a guy or have the size to run over a guy down low or what have you....but his puck possession qualities aren't likely to define him whatsoever.
Takes a lot more than physical talents to dominate the puck and high levels of hockey sense can't be expected just to appear out of thin air. Malkin can do it, not because of his physical tools but because he's got those tools and a very high level of hockey sense.
You can be puck dominant in different ways. Prime Ovchekin was puck dominant not in the sense that he would hold onto it forever with dekes/dangles/smarts and what not but because no one in the league could separate him from the puck when he was charging down the wing. So unless he made a mistake or got off a shot it was near impossible to stop him from getting to where he wanted to go which was always the slot or going hard to the net whether it was via power or deke.
And even though he did not hold onto it as long as the others you listed, he had these bursts 6-7 times a game throughout the season which adds up. So in a non traditional sense you can say he was dominant with the puck whenever he got it. And I think zibanejad will be similar to this (definently not to the extent OV was).
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