Finnish Top Prospects ( In Future)
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03-31-2013, 04:46 PM
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Too Far
Originally Posted by
Could you be more specific?
Both are lightweight guys and have similar height, so not much difference there. Teräväinen seems a tad taller as of now, but who knows, maybe Lehkonen still grows a bit and catches up. Both would benefit from having more strength/muscle, but judging the way these guys play the game and the situations they end up in, I think it’s a bit more crucial for Lehkonen, especially when thinking of NHL. Also, Teräväinen is great at dodging the bullet, he changes direction in a heartbeat and it’s hard to predict what he does next. Not saying that Lehkonen doesn’t have the same qualities, but Teräväinen has them in spades.
Teräväinen’s puck handling skills are very good, if not exceptional. Lehkonen’s puck handling skills are good as well, but Teräväinen has an advantage here. I think that playmaking ability(/upside) is another area where Teräväinen has an advantage. His unpredictability, creativity, very good puck skills and the ability to maneuver with the puck should as a combination eventually stand out even at the highest level, as long as rest of his game keeps developing.
You brought up the fact that “at some point upside or skills ought to manifest themselves on the scoresheet”, and I agree with you. Sooner or later that needs to start happening more and more, it’s an area of the game where Teräväinen can improve. There are already a lot of pretty things happening on the ice, but effectivity and scoring goals is ultimately what wins the games.
One thing to remember when comparing stats is that Lehkonen played quite a bit with Sakari Salminen, a player who I think would’ve boosted Teräväinen’s scoring totals as well. Also, playing on the same team at the WJC’s Teräväinen showed that he was the older and more experienced player from these two.
Teräväinen can play all forward positions, which in some sense makes him slightly more valuable than Lehkonen who’s a wing only. Another minor thing that might affect the equation is the relative strength of the draft year, some say that 2013 has a bit more depth than 2012, so this might make it slightly harder for Lehkonen to break into the 1st round.
For his age Lehkonen is well schooled about different aspects of the game, which of course is a valuable thing because some guys never fully learn the top level game. He seems like a more mature player and a better two-way guy than Teräväinen in his draft year. Another thing worth mentioning about his game is his drive to score. He seeks scoring opportunities, and finds the back of the net relatively often, especially for a Finn. Both Lehkonen and Teräväinen are gentleman players, but I guess you could say that Lehkonen is less afraid of getting his nose dirty.
Scouts naturally have questions about how well Lehkonen’s game will translate to the NHL, and his slightly built frame isn’t helping to dispel the uncertainty. Adding muscle is always possible, but when will it happen and what are the final results? Teräväinen is partially on the same boat, but the flashy puck skills and the presumed higher offensive upside perhaps make it easier to overlook some things.
Interesting to see what happens at the draft, it’s possible that there’s more than one truth out there. Some see Lehkonen as a first rounder, like Craig Button, but there are obviously differing opinions as well.
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