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05-20-2013, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by roto View Post
It's one measuring stick, but not very good. As I mentioned previously, there a a lot of very skilled players who are just too small or soft to get a top-6 spot in NHL and they're also useless in lower lines for same reasons. It means that they may have the talent but not the size. It's hard for these borderline cases to get a spot in NHL but they still might be very good on big ice while NHL grinders may not be very useful.

Examples from Finland:
Komarov, Hartikainen, Petrell and Joensuu have played in NHL. Are they more talented and skilled than top Finnish KHL forwards like Kontiola, Pesonen, Immonen, Aaltonen or even guys like Salminen? No. They just fullfill the requirements of NHL grinder role. Then there's Miettinen who played years as 1st line winger and still plays in NHL. He has no chances to Sochi and is behind many KHL forwards.

What is then a good measuring stick, I don't know but I know NHL status isn't a good measuring stick. WC tournaments actually show something about player pool depth and shows how non-NHLers can play with and against NHLers. One tournament (WC, olympic or World Cup) tells almost nothing, but yearly WC has quite big sample size and good sample rate, so WCs tell in long term something about depth and talent level in different leagues.

Olympic tournament is nice to watch, but it proves nothing else than which team was best in that tournament. Some 4-7 games (of which three are basically meaningless) every four years isn't just enough to make any conclusions, even though some fans think so.
Agreed on all points. Grinders do have a high level of skill but in an area that doesn't translate to needs on te bigger ice surface. Plus I could handle playing grinders in a one game take all but not so hot playing them in a best of seven. These are players that are really hard to play against on the smaller ice surface.

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