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Alexander Nikulin's Blog Part II

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Old
08-27-2008, 10:33 AM
  #576
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Originally Posted by Senateurs View Post
It sure worked for them and I like the fact Carbo wasn't affraid of sitting someone out when they weren't performing. He really had 25 players fighting for ice time and we saw guys making it really hard for him to scratch them out of the line up.

Paddock was talking real tough in front of the cameras but he didn't act accordingly. We had too many passengers and players taking their spot for granted.
That's when you optimize the use of your depht...

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08-27-2008, 11:45 AM
  #577
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That's when you optimize the use of your depht...
We do have more dept than last year. At least it looks like we have a couple of rookies that can challenge for spots whereas last year, we only had Foligno to look forward too.

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08-27-2008, 06:11 PM
  #578
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I think the worry people have about Nikulin/Zubov jumping ship is the reports from the development camp that they kinda stuck to themselves and didn't try to integrate with the rest of the members of the camp.

As far as competition for spots - Bass has the advantage of being about the only option we have for a fourth line energy/grinding center (McAmmond's the other option, but I believe his faceoff % is pretty terrible?), unless we have Fisher, Kelly and Vermette all centering separate lines.

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08-27-2008, 09:39 PM
  #579
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I think the worry people have about Nikulin/Zubov jumping ship is the reports from the development camp that they kinda stuck to themselves and didn't try to integrate with the rest of the members of the camp.

As far as competition for spots - Bass has the advantage of being about the only option we have for a fourth line energy/grinding center (McAmmond's the other option, but I believe his faceoff % is pretty terrible?), unless we have Fisher, Kelly and Vermette all centering separate lines.
I believe Zubov has been working out with Cody Bass and Chris Kelly all summer, so I'm not sure how much to read into his behaviour at the development camp.

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08-28-2008, 09:45 AM
  #580
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I think the worry people have about Nikulin/Zubov jumping ship is the reports from the development camp that they kinda stuck to themselves and didn't try to integrate with the rest of the members of the camp.
It's pretty hard to do that though when English isn't your first language, and what you do know of it isn't very much.

I don't know about Zubov, but judging from what Nukes has been writing in his blogs he's very eager to make the team, and knows how hard it is. He obviously has the talent to play in the NHL, it's just a matter of him performing well in camp and maybe winning a spot for the opening roster.

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08-28-2008, 01:36 PM
  #581
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It's pretty hard to do that though when English isn't your first language, and what you do know of it isn't very much.

I don't know about Zubov, but judging from what Nukes has been writing in his blogs he's very eager to make the team, and knows how hard it is. He obviously has the talent to play in the NHL, it's just a matter of him performing well in camp and maybe winning a spot for the opening roster.
Whatever the reason, they didn't impress at the camp. They still have everything to prove when they get to Ottawa in september. I wish them both the best of luck, and I hope they make the team, but they'll have to show the coach they are both here to compete if they want to stay with the big club.

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09-06-2008, 04:12 PM
  #582
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cant wait to c Niku in some pre-season games .... hopefully he stands out and earns a spot on the opening day roster ...

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09-08-2008, 08:57 AM
  #583
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cant wait to c Niku in some pre-season games .... hopefully he stands out and earns a spot on the opening day roster ...
http://www.hockeybuzz.com/blog.php?p...&blogger_id=14

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09-08-2008, 09:08 AM
  #584
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Didn't Gelinas retire? I also doubt Smolinski would be brought back. Most of the discussion that goes on on these boards tends to be more informed than Kevin Lee, especially when it comes to prospects.

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09-08-2008, 10:06 AM
  #585
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You're referring to a Kevin Lee article?

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09-08-2008, 10:43 AM
  #586
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Originally Posted by The Mars Volchenkov View Post
You're referring to a Kevin Lee article?
Do you think he has a chance to make the Ottawa team? My guess would be at centre and not on the wing and there is Spezza, Fisher, Vermette, Kelly, McAmmond and Bass ahead of him at centre. He won't beat out either Spezza on the first line, he won't beat out either Fisher or Vermette on the 2nd line whoever ends up in that position and I doubt they put him on the 4th line since they like Bass in that position so that leaves the 3rd line. Is he better than Kelly or McAmmond as a 3rd line centre? Isn't his lack of physical play a detriment as a 3rd line centre? I still don't see him making the Ottawa team & neither does Lee who must know a little bit about hockey, afterall he is on Eklund's site and on the team 1200 from time to time.

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09-08-2008, 10:51 AM
  #587
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Originally Posted by aragorn View Post
Do you think he has a chance to make the Ottawa team? My guess would be at centre and not on the wing and there is Spezza, Fisher, Vermette, Kelly, McAmmond and Bass ahead of him at centre. He won't beat out either Spezza on the first line, he won't beat out either Fisher or Vermette on the 2nd line whoever ends up in that position and I doubt they put him on the 4th line since they like Bass in that position so that leaves the 3rd line. Is he better than Kelly or McAmmond as a 3rd line centre? Isn't his lack of physical play a detriment as a 3rd line centre? I still don't see him making the Ottawa team & neither does Lee who must know a little bit about hockey, afterall he is on Eklund's site and on the team 1200 from time to time.
Kevin Lee also seems to be assuming Winchester doesn't make the team, and it doesn't take a lot to connect the dots and figure out Winchester won't be in Bingo. I can do that and I'm not on Eklund's site.

As for where Nikulin could play, Kelly can easily play LW and has done it in the past. He also could end up as a supporting player on a scoring line, particularly if we go three lines. Vermette plays LW as well of course. The only two players on our team that are almost certain to play center are Spezza and Fisher, everybody else has played plenty of LW in the NHL. The problem is not so much finding him time to play center ice but rather figuring out what to do with our glut of bottom six forwards.

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09-08-2008, 11:02 AM
  #588
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I still don't see him making the Ottawa team & neither does Lee who must know a little bit about hockey, afterall he is on Eklund's site and on the team 1200 from time to time.
He hasn't been on the Team 1200 since he first moved back to Ottawa. He's been blacklisted, much like you never hear Don Brennan on said station.

Lee is not a credible source.

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09-08-2008, 01:37 PM
  #589
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Do you think he has a chance to make the Ottawa team? My guess would be at centre and not on the wing and there is Spezza, Fisher, Vermette, Kelly, McAmmond and Bass ahead of him at centre. He won't beat out either Spezza on the first line, he won't beat out either Fisher or Vermette on the 2nd line whoever ends up in that position and I doubt they put him on the 4th line since they like Bass in that position so that leaves the 3rd line. Is he better than Kelly or McAmmond as a 3rd line centre? Isn't his lack of physical play a detriment as a 3rd line centre? I still don't see him making the Ottawa team & neither does Lee who must know a little bit about hockey, afterall he is on Eklund's site and on the team 1200 from time to time.




I'm sorry, but that's the worst argument I've ever heard. :

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09-08-2008, 02:04 PM
  #590
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No thx for Smolinski and Gelinas... Murray could be tried at the camp, but not signed before (i hope)

For Nikulin, the only possibility i see for him is :

Kelly - Nikulin - Neil

Not sure he could be a top-6 forward, particulary not this year...

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09-08-2008, 02:59 PM
  #591
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I can do that and I'm not on Eklund's site.
Snap!

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09-08-2008, 04:06 PM
  #592
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Originally Posted by aragorn View Post
As others have written, Kevin Lee is not a worthwhile source. For whatever reason Kevin hates Nikulin and has been trying to get him traded via his blog for months (he's also not fond of Chris Neil).

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09-09-2008, 08:14 AM
  #593
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Kevin Lee also seems to be assuming Winchester doesn't make the team, and it doesn't take a lot to connect the dots and figure out Winchester won't be in Bingo. I can do that and I'm not on Eklund's site.

As for where Nikulin could play, Kelly can easily play LW and has done it in the past. He also could end up as a supporting player on a scoring line, particularly if we go three lines. Vermette plays LW as well of course. The only two players on our team that are almost certain to play center are Spezza and Fisher, everybody else has played plenty of LW in the NHL. The problem is not so much finding him time to play center ice but rather figuring out what to do with our glut of bottom six forwards.
It will be interesting what happens to Winchester, none of us know if he is good enough to make this team or whether he will be a tradable asset. Although that seems unlikely since they went to so much trouble to sign him last year. Sure Kelly can play LW but doesn't it also seem unlikely that they would play 3 centres on one line Kelly - Vermette - Fisher or play 4 centres on the top two lines? It's possible because they still have McAmmond who could play 3rd line centre or Nikulin which IMO is less likely. What happens if Murray signs another forward?

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He hasn't been on the Team 1200 since he first moved back to Ottawa. He's been blacklisted, much like you never hear Don Brennan on said station.

Lee is not a credible source.
Yes, he has, I heard Kevin Lee on the Team 1200 last week and before that when Buzz died. I would tend to think that sports writers who supposedly have greater access and more sources would have a little more credibility than any of us who are just fans of the team. You may not agree with their opinion but I don't think we can say they are not credible. Afterall we are all really just guessing, some more educated than others.

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As others have written, Kevin Lee is not a worthwhile source. For whatever reason Kevin hates Nikulin and has been trying to get him traded via his blog for months (he's also not fond of Chris Neil).
Come on, he hates Nikulin and Neil ... I doubt he hates anyone, why do people assume we hate Nikulin if we just surmise he doesn't have what it takes to make this team. It's not about hate, it's about assessing talent & giving an opinion. Maybe like us he is looking at the roster and determining that Nikulin isn't good enough to make the team. Based on what we did see of him last year when he played in Ottawa I too thought he lacked any kind of intensity, same for Hennessy.

Maybe he blows us all away this year at camp, it remains to be seen. But just from a couple of practises at the development camp, to me anyway, it still seems he doesn't get it and will not or cannot show the intensity some of us are looking for in him. IMO I think that Isbister and Shannon may now be ahead of him in terms of callups. Looking at this roster I see that Schubert, Neil and McAmmond are the most vulnerable to lose their jobs or be traded.

I also think that Nikulin's talent is best suited for the 2nd or 3rd line and I know it won't be the 2nd line because he won't beat out Fisher or Vermette for that spot. IMO I think the Sens would prefer an experienced Kelly or McAmmond to play Centre on the 3rd line which leaves him out. Donovan just signed for two years and Winchester is likely guaranteed a spot because of his one way contract which takes away another roster spot. Foligno and Bass are more likely to make this team but there's no guarantee for them either. Looking at this roster there just doesn't seem to be any room to accomodate Nikulin which may make him a valuable tradable asset.

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09-09-2008, 04:31 PM
  #594
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It will be interesting what happens to Winchester, none of us know if he is good enough to make this team or whether he will be a tradable asset
As I've said repeatedly, he's on a one-way contract so he's with the big team even if he's spending his time in the pressbox. I think as an unproven player there's no market for him (especially on a two-year, one-way deal).

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You may not agree with their opinion but I don't think we can say they are not credible. Afterall we are all really just guessing, some more educated than others.
People don't dismiss Kevin abstractly--do some research and take a look at what he says versus what happens (a good example is the Jason Williams boondoggle this summer).

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why do people assume we hate Nikulin if we just surmise he doesn't have what it takes to make this team.
There's no "we", this is about Lee. I assume he dislikes him because when he invents his trade rumours he always includes him going the other way. Check his archive.

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Maybe like us he is looking at the roster and determining that Nikulin isn't good enough to make the team. Based on what we did see of him last year when he played in Ottawa I too thought he lacked any kind of intensity, same for Hennessy.
He (and you) are talking about two games with a grand total of 10 minutes of playing time (playing with a wrist injury). He didn't look great, but it was hardly illuminating. If Kevin bothered to read anything he'd know that Nikulin was considered the top prospect in Binghamton--but hey, that's only the word from the organisation.

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Looking at this roster I see that Schubert, Neil and McAmmond are the most vulnerable to lose their jobs or be traded.
On-ice performance will dictate, but I disagree on Schubert and Neil.

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I also think that Nikulin's talent is best suited for the 2nd or 3rd line and I know it won't be the 2nd line because he won't beat out Fisher or Vermette for that spot. IMO I think the Sens would prefer an experienced Kelly or McAmmond to play Centre on the 3rd line which leaves him out. Donovan just signed for two years and Winchester is likely guaranteed a spot because of his one way contract which takes away another roster spot. Foligno and Bass are more likely to make this team but there's no guarantee for them either. Looking at this roster there just doesn't seem to be any room to accomodate Nikulin which may make him a valuable tradable asset.
There's something to your argument. I agree that Nikulin is best suited to 2nd or 3rd line duty. I doubt Vermette will play center. Kelly can play all three forward positions, so if the Sens wanted someone else to play center on the third line he could be shifted. Ultimately Nikulin will decide his own fate--he'll either be the #1 center in Bingo or he'll play ala Filppula during his rookie year. As it stands I believe only one position is open on the team, and that will be between Cody Bass, Nikulin, Ryan Shannon, and Brad Isbister (Bass having the inside shot).

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09-09-2008, 05:14 PM
  #595
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It will be interesting what happens to Winchester, none of us know if he is good enough to make this team or whether he will be a tradable asset. Although that seems unlikely since they went to so much trouble to sign him last year. Sure Kelly can play LW but doesn't it also seem unlikely that they would play 3 centres on one line Kelly - Vermette - Fisher or play 4 centres on the top two lines? It's possible because they still have McAmmond who could play 3rd line centre or Nikulin which IMO is less likely. What happens if Murray signs another forward?
Well, "we" may not know, but Murray is on record as saying (regarding Nycholat) that he will not give 1 way contracts to AHL players. He doesn't want to set that precedent and he's obviously a man of his word. Whatever a fan may believe, it's fairly obvious that Bryan Murray believes Jesse Winchester is going to be an Ottawa Senator this year, and like I said this is a very easy conclusion to draw from reading news reports. Kevin Lee doesn't even seem to have figured that one out, and while that hardly discredits him alone, he does that himself more than often enough that I don't see how one can use an article of his as a credible source. That was my only point. I agree what role Winchester plays is yet to be determined though.

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09-09-2008, 05:18 PM
  #596
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People don't dismiss Kevin abstractly--do some research and take a look at what he says versus what happens (a good example is the Jason Williams boondoggle this summer).
This summer he reported that "he received word" on the completion of the Barker/Neil trade. The Williams situation was bizarre, but he was just flat out wrong on Barker/Neil and he has been just flat out wrong before. He's a spinster and an educated guesser, a blogger with a face, a website and the arrogance to pretend he's something he's not.

I am not against Lee or even Eklund being used to stimulate discussion, but on its own they are purely speculative sources and there are plenty of people on this board who love to do that too.

To be fair though (or equally unfair), many of the same things, minus the blogger part, could be or have been said about Garrioch. He is the lead sports reporter for a legitimate (albeit less respected) news paper part of a major national conglomerate, not some website, and yet few people take his rumours seriously. I certainly don't because I've seen him trying to work Bryan Murray before - he follows him, hounds him, almost beginning for a scoop in a way that unbalances the relationship (IMO). Murray is shrewd enough to manipulate and deliberately misinform reporters, even Garrioch, and knowing Lee is even less connected than Garrioch, one can therefore surmise that if we're taking Garrioch with a grain of salt, Lee should be taken with several.


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09-09-2008, 08:35 PM
  #597
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Well, "we" may not know, but Murray is on record as saying (regarding Nycholat) that he will not give 1 way contracts to AHL players. He doesn't want to set that precedent and he's obviously a man of his word. Whatever a fan may believe, it's fairly obvious that Bryan Murray believes Jesse Winchester is going to be an Ottawa Senator this year, and like I said this is a very easy conclusion to draw from reading news reports. Kevin Lee doesn't even seem to have figured that one out, and while that hardly discredits him alone, he does that himself more than often enough that I don't see how one can use an article of his as a credible source. That was my only point. I agree what role Winchester plays is yet to be determined though.

just to add something in, if I remember correctly Winchester came here instead of other places as Murray was prepared to offer him something that others were not. Rightly or wrongly, it would seem he has a spot.

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09-10-2008, 08:15 AM
  #598
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I really hope Nikulin gets his chance this year, if we hadn't brought Donovan back he'd easily get a roster spot

Heatley-Spezza-Alfredsson
Foligno-Fisher-Winchester
Vermette-Kelly-Neil
Ruutu-McAmmond/Bass-Nikulin/Donovan

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09-10-2008, 10:41 AM
  #599
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I really hope Nikulin gets his chance this year, if we hadn't brought Donovan back he'd easily get a roster spot

Heatley-Spezza-Alfredsson
Foligno-Fisher-Winchester
Vermette-Kelly-Neil
Ruutu-McAmmond/Bass-Nikulin/Donovan
Except Nikulin isn't going to benefit from playing 5 mins a night on the fourth line, and the Sens don't get any benefit cause he's soft to play of the fourth line.

The only good thing would be that he might not jet back to Russia if he were to make the team.

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09-10-2008, 09:47 PM
  #600
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The only good thing would be that he might not jet back to Russia if he were to make the team.
Or figures out that he needs to ask for a trade in order to further his devlopment for NHL play

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