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12-02-2012, 09:24 PM
  #76
Sojourn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exit Dose View Post
We were saying that he was invisible and ineffective with the puck because he was invisible and ineffective with the puck. I'm sorry that what we saw in those games didn't conform with him having a perfect start. Etem has to prove he belongs in the NHL. He's on his way to doing that. Note that none of this ever meant that we thought he was a bust. I can only speak for myself, but the conclusion that I drew is that this is the sort of thing that you expect from a rookie.
Pretty much. Speaking for myself, I would have been very surprised(but pleasantly so) if he didn't shown the growing pains we've seen. Mostly because that's the case for most players(especially for the younger ones like Etem), but also because it was pretty clear some of Etem's production in the CHL was a product of being bigger, faster, and stronger than his peers.

No one has been ripping on Etem. From the very beginning, all I've seen anyone say, along these lines, is that pencilling Etem into the line-up without any pro experience is premature(and would probably turn out to be a mistake which could only hurt Anaheim at this point), and that it would be better to see how he does in the AHL where he can work on his development. All signs pointed to him needing to adjust to the game at the professional level, where he wouldn't have the same physical advantages that he had in the CHL, and while the AHL is far from the NHL, it's still a step up, and he'd be playing against adults. On top of that, the AHL is an excellent place for him to start rounding out his game better. Being invisible when you aren't scoring is really not a good thing.

As far as I'm concerned, everything Etem has done so far has reinforced everything that we've been saying about Etem along these lines. Compared to his play at the beginning of the season, I think we're seeing nice progress from him, and he's starting to find ways of being more effective at making his presence felt. I wouldn't be surprised if, shortly, he's one of the best forwards on the ice for Norfolk on a consistent basis. From there, the next step will be the NHL.

I don't see how any of this translates to "Etem sucks." or "Etem is going to bust." in Occupy's world. Or how expressing an opinion that Etem needs to get better before he's NHL-ready is ripping on him.

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