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12-09-2012, 03:54 PM
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Originally Posted by StrappingYoungChad View Post
That too is what I was referring to.

Looking back at the last 15 drafts, you'd see a LOT more Russians drafted in the first round. I don't think too many played very long in the NHL so I can see why teams are careful.

Don't get me wrong, I actually prefer "big ice" hockey to North American hockey. I just wish the NHL would adopt it, but I know it'll never happen.
You make good points! I think the thing that Russian kids fear most is getting stuck in the AHL. The AHL plays more of a mucking and grinding style than the NHL itself, and that is not consistent with the skills that most Russian kids have developed. Somebody posted an article showing that Nugent-Hopkins makes about $65,000 in the AHL. Russian kids know that they can make 10 times that much or more, more or less tax-free, in the KHL. The Russian kids and their agents want to sign one-way contracts, and NHL clubs often aren't willing to do that. Also, the style of play in the KHL is the same as the kids grew up on.

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