Thread: Sochi 2014
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02-07-2013, 01:42 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Zuerich
Country: Switzerland
Posts: 636
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I'm really surprised so many predicted rosters are missing a guy who's had already a lot of positive influence in the past on the sbornaja.

He's been on the team 3-times over last 5 years for WHC, helping to win 2 Titels and reach 1 Final. 2011 the coach decided not to nominate him as an extra forward while the tournament (and went with Ovechkin who's value for the sbornaja never was on the same level)... which resulted in the worst russian final ranking for quite a few years, and the only tournament they missed the final for 5 years... plus it ended the coach's time on the national team.

This guy has shown more then once, he's clutch: got 4 Goals and 2 Assissts in 3 final game appereances, having had a very big influence on 2 titels. (Remember Kovaltchuck's legendary Overtime-PP GWG against Canada... it wouldn't have happened, hadn't this guy one-timed a puck jumping back from the back-boards into the net at the begining of the 3rd Period and put up Tereshenko for the tie.)

This guy can play LW where he can create and finish off plays all himself on a regular base, he does play RW nowadays, where he isn't the same goalscoringthread like from his off-wing, but plays a very strong all-around game on this side. Pair him with an elite center, and you got the complete package on the RW. When paired with an elite Center (ask Backström) you see how smart he acctually can play. Than he loves to share the puck, making this nice little plays, and will finish his chances when being put up nicely timed. Plus he is very good on PK, is very good in stealing pucks (only behind datsyuk), has a good read of opposing passing lines and does close them effectively with his stick. On the RW his board play on the D is surprisingly good (thx to his super fine hands and again long stick), on the LW not on the same level. On PP you can bring him beside the net or on the blueline. He still doesn't like to play the body on regular base, but gotten much stronger over the last years. And while we recently haven't seen the god-mode as often as a few years ago, his B-Game(?) has improved so much, that even on a bad night he doesn't end up as a liability anymore (unlike Ovechkin e.g.).

So I ask: Why do so many guys in here go without the best 2-way wing (among the guys with elite skills) russia has to offer on their roster?

If you don't believe me... just ask a Canes' fan. (or a Caps supporter)

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