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11-19-2012, 08:09 PM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Vancouver
Country: Canada
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Still hockey is effectively a two continent sport - NA (only 2 of 23 countries contribute) and Europe(maybe 12 of the app 50 countries contribute). This is being generous since most countries from both continents do not contribute NHL hockey players.

NA and Europe rank 4th and 3rd in terms of continental population out of all the continents.

From 1951 thru 2011 Canada's population went from just over 14,000,000 to app 34, 275,000 or app a 2.5 growth rate

2010-11 NHL season featured 482 Canadian skaters and 42 goalies.Adjusting for roster size and the tandem goal system this is the equivalent of 30 teams of 16 skaters and 1 goalie with 12 goalies left over in 1951 terms. So in terms of producing NHL players the Canadian population has outperformed the population growth. Plus the same population is a major contributor to stocking the various minor leagues in NA, the CHL, European leagues, NCAA hockey programs, etc.

The world population is not declining but it is not hockey friendly either nor is it performing at the level Canada is in producing professional or potential professional players.

As for the actual number of Canadiens playing hockey in 1951 or 1961 or points before or after, it does not matter since there is no link between population growth and the production of NHL hockey players by a country. The above clearly showed this. What matters is year round access to facilities and coaching.
I'll refer you back to post 300 where I gave the example of British Columbia which wasn't a traditional Canadian feeder into the NHL.

This pattern also happened in the maritime provinces as well.

Add all the talent from Europe as well as the US college system (which also includes top Canadian talent as well). College players from the US weren't a feeder system for the 06 NHL.

Throw in the change in the late 80's towards elite training and coaching of the top young talent after the poor showing at the WJC you have a convergence in the early 90's of a huge increase in the talent pool in the NHL both in terms of quality and depth.

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