Thread: Diaz
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11-01-2012, 12:20 PM
Rise from the Ashes
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Originally Posted by Ohashi_Jouzu View Post
Gotta disagree there. It's fun to say that Hamrlik was an "offensive defenseman" who learned how to play defense, but that's not why he was drafted 1st overall (the first of many huge differences in the relative calibre of these two guys). It wasn't his 13 points in ~50 games in the pro Czech ranks as a teenager, it was his size, hockey sense, polish, and ability in all 3 zones that worked in his favour on draft day. A guy who earns full time shifts in the NHL as an 18 year old is worlds apart from a guy who finally gets brought over at 25 "when he's ready" in terms of "upside" (which was actually more like age 23/24 for Emelin, and there was a little more behind when he finally made it over, but still).
Hamrlik was in the negative plus/minus every year until he played in Edmonton. Essentially he was 25 when he started improving his play defensively and became a two-way presence. To say he was already "polished" is an overstatement.

Not saying Emelin will be as good as Hamrlik was at age 25, because he isnt even right now. But Hamrlik did have more NHL seasoning at age 25 than Emelin. Communication is the main thing preventing him from reaching that potential.

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