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01-03-2013, 02:35 AM
Kid Dynamite
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Join Date: Oct 2010
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Originally Posted by Fulcrum View Post
I was thinking exactly the same thing. Only I would add- YET! I think when he matures he can lead a team, like Kovalchuk matured. But not yet!

Good news for Russia is that Grigorenko and Kucherov stepped up, like in U18. Everything is where it belongs, and the tournament put things in their rightful place no matter how much Varnakov tried to give that leadership role to Yakupov.
I would add that in the KHL Yakupov often gets feed the puck at about the red line while he is full flight, from what I have seen in these games he is getting at at his own blue line while he is winding up, this seems to allow defending teams to converge on him easier and leads to the comments of Yakupov trying to walk through the entire opposing team. The kid can beat a defender 1 on 1, he has done it numerous times in the KHL, but when there are 4 guys waiting for him on the blue line the puck gets turned over.

That being said he does need to use his teammates better if he is in that situation, but it is hard to do anything with the way the team seems to want to break out.

As for him leading, I would echo what has been said. He seems to get too frustrated and is too immature to be a captain at this point in time. The positive is, this kid is frustrated because he loves to score goals, and he loves to win hockey games and that can be infectious for a team if he is successful.

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