Aleksi Saarela - The next Finnish youth star?
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02-20-2013, 03:06 PM
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Too Far
Originally Posted by
I think you're generalizing too much. If you look at Saarela's skating now and compare it to Granlund in his draft year (as 1.5 years older), Saarela is clearly ahead of Granlund in that department. Saarela has a much better skating stance and a more powerful stride. Even the "persjalka" guys will have different attributes in power, mobility, explosiveness, etc, and to me Saarela is ahead of Granlund when judging these attributes.
And I'm not sure what you saw, I think he looked pretty fast out there.
Saarela is a stronger skater than young Granlund, but I don’t think his upside in this aspect is notably higher than with Granlund. He won’t be the fastest or the most agile 5’10’’ guy on the ice, against world class competition he won’t be the top dog in north-south skating competitions or pull away from opponents with first few steps.
Genetics and training affect explosiveness and speed, no denying it. Will father be like son? At least with Barkov’s and Kapanen’s it’s been like that, and in the early going Saarela doesn’t seem very different from his father.
Saarela has good skills and confidence with the puck (“kiekkovarmuus” in Finnish), this enables him to handle the puck at full speed. He can manage difficult situations like entering the zone into a pocket. In this sense he’s very similar with young Granlund. Good balance and strength on the puck are the things that resemble Salomäki.
Originally Posted by
Göran Stubb said yesterday at YLE Puhe that at current rate Salomäki's potential looks to be at "decent SM-Liiga player" ("SM-Liiga sarjajyrä") so he's going to have to start working hard if he wants to make the NHL.
At current rate, developing into a NHL regular is the less likely option for Salomäki, that is correct, but saying that he “will never make the NHL” is in his case too strong of an opinion I think.
Salomäki is already better than a decent SM-liiga player, so in this case our 77 year-old expert doesn’t have the most accurate perception. When healthy he has been the 4th most valuable forward for Kärpät after Haataja, Huml and Kähkönen. You won’t see his value from scoring stats alone and I think the recent WJC’s gave a slightly wrong impression about him to many.
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