Realistically....How many teams should be in the NHL?
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12-29-2012, 04:06 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: La Vieille Capitale
Originally Posted by
: why should Canada be the NHL's biggest source of talent?
Because they are the biggest providers of NHL players and if they stop being that, then we have no NHL.
And the CHL for instance have the best model at producing NHL-ready players as far developement and having the character-players for the NHL. You won't see a James Neal and Milan Lucic come out of Sweden(although from Europe you have an odd cat like Chara).
: Are further inroads being made into Europe or not?
For the smaller countries, here's how many NHL players they had in their history by 1996, and how many they've had since then:
Austria - 0 in 1996, 6 from 1997-2012
Denmark - 1 by 1996, 6 from 1997-2012
France - 4 by 1996, 3 from 1997-2012
Germany - 9 by 1996, 17 from 1997-2012
Norway - 1 by 1996, 6 from 1997-2012
Switzerland - 2 by 1996, 18 from 1997-2012
Not included are the USSR and former Soviet republics. I can also throw in IIHF rankings over time, which has seen Slovenia go from the bottom to the top division in less than 20 years, that has seen Hungary go from middling to the top division, that has seen Belarus and Latvia surge...
But how many of them are NHL players? Russia is supposed to be a big country but as far as number of players and quality of them, they have a only a few.
: With natural population growth and shifts, why would there be
available talent even within already-developed countries? We haven't touched on the next wave of Swedish players; 10 years ago, they weren't producing anyone. Slovakia and the Czech Republic both went through an extended lull. And the United States was entirely confined to Minnesota, Massachusetts, and Michigan....now we've seen a resurgence in the European countries, and a huge influx of NHL talent from other American states.
No question it's great that other areas of the states are producing players but not enough that it can justify having more NHL teams. And it's not that other countries produce more talent than before, it's that the NHL more easily welcome them. There has been great players in the past from these countries that have never played for the NHL. But now the NHL are tracking the whole planet to find players and they let everyone in.
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