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LW Toni Rajala - Luleň HF, SHL (2009, 101st, EDM; UFA)

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Old
04-23-2009, 11:28 AM
  #476
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Originally Posted by FINNtastic View Post
Off topic, as for Pulkkinen I was a bit disappointed with his shooting accuracy in this tournament (U18) but he still is an intriguing prospect. If I would send some player to the CHL it would be Pulkkinen 'cause he already plays a straight forward NA type of game so he would probably succeed. I wouldn't label him as a power forward-type 'cause in my eyes a power forward's game in based around his hits..like Milan Lucic etc. (or at least that's how I see it)

Pulkkinen on the other hand is more of a sniper with some eagerness to play the body. There hasn't really been a Finnish player like him so it's difficult to compare him. Here's a few tries: Selńnne with less speed but better stickhandling, Tuomo Ruutu with more flash and better hands but less physical, More physical Valtteri Filppula with a better shot.
Yea well he is not power forward, i didnt mean that, i meant that there are some elements in his game that are similiar. He doesnt play the body that much, but the way he drives to the net if its needed and gets to those open areas to shoot is pretty good.

First well sized pure sniper Finland has ever seen.

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04-23-2009, 02:32 PM
  #477
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Well the weight thing would do it, although Schroeder doesn't have much room to grow weightwise while Rajala has plenty so therefore for shouldn't Rajala have a bigger upside? And the training programs? Missed, wide right.
It seems to be more of a priority in NA than in Europe, they may be equipped with the most advanced equipment but they likely do not train as hard as in NA. When you read most CHL imports interviews and they speak of they difference between here and thier home country they say how serious North American's take their off-ice training. This is why you see as an example the Canadian u-18 teams built and thicker than their opposition.

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04-23-2009, 02:57 PM
  #478
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It seems to be more of a priority in NA than in Europe, they may be equipped with the most advanced equipment but they likely do not train as hard as in NA. When you read most CHL imports interviews and they speak of they difference between here and thier home country they say how serious North American's take their off-ice training. This is why you see as an example the Canadian u-18 teams built and thicker than their opposition.
Rajala plays and trains with his Sm-liiga team, with men.

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Old
04-23-2009, 03:10 PM
  #479
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http://www.tsn.ca/draftcentre/feature/?id=11679

Back in the top 30
By ISS which hated him last year.

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Old
04-23-2009, 03:12 PM
  #480
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It seems to be more of a priority in NA than in Europe, they may be equipped with the most advanced equipment but they likely do not train as hard as in NA. When you read most CHL imports interviews and they speak of they difference between here and thier home country they say how serious North American's take their off-ice training. This is why you see as an example the Canadian u-18 teams built and thicker than their opposition.
And most North american men that come over to SM-liiga and Elitserien from AHL say that the training is harder and has more variation etc. than over there.

Maybe jrs are trained harder than over here, jr series here aren't really comparable to the highest jr ranks in NA, but it's rather irrelevent as Rajala is training with the men.

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04-23-2009, 08:20 PM
  #481
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This is why you see as an example the Canadian u-18 teams built and thicker than their opposition.
That comes more with the fact that Canada has such a huge number of players to pick from and naturally the physically most developed ones are the ones that are chosen for the national teams (and also the junior teams). Although some have speculated that there's no doping control in CHL and these kids take "extra supplements" during off season training... You may also not be aware of the fact that Finnish kids develop physically much slower than North Americans. Like I said in another post, many Finnish coaches, journalists and scouts have noted how in recent years Canadian kids have playoff beards in in WJC tournaments while our kids barely have pubic hair.

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04-23-2009, 09:03 PM
  #482
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That comes more with the fact that Canada has such a huge number of players to pick from and naturally the physically most developed ones are the ones that are chosen for the national teams (and also the junior teams). Although some have speculated that there's no doping control in CHL and these kids take "extra supplements" during off season training... You may also not be aware of the fact that Finnish kids develop physically much slower than North Americans. Like I said in another post, many Finnish coaches, journalists and scouts have noted how in recent years Canadian kids have playoff beards in in WJC tournaments while our kids barely have pubic hair.
Is Rajala expected to get a top 6 role within the Ilves organization next season, and what is the timetable for his arrival in North America?

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04-23-2009, 10:00 PM
  #483
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Is Rajala expected to get a top 6 role within the Ilves organization next season, and what is the timetable for his arrival in North America?
Most likely he'll get atleast 3rd line minutes plus PP but many Ilves fans have already placed him on the first line. As for the timetable, I'd say he needs 2 or 3 seasons to develop physically. And if you're wondering about a team losing his rights after two years, European clubs would very much like to see that extended back to 4 years and it could be changed in the next transfer agreement/CBA.

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04-23-2009, 10:46 PM
  #484
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Most likely he'll get atleast 3rd line minutes plus PP but many Ilves fans have already placed him on the first line. As for the timetable, I'd say he needs 2 or 3 seasons to develop physically. And if you're wondering about a team losing his rights after two years, European clubs would very much like to see that extended back to 4 years and it could be changed in the next transfer agreement/CBA.
I'd say one more season in the Ilves organization, then one year in the AHL, and then the big show.

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04-23-2009, 10:53 PM
  #485
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I'd say one more season in the Ilves organization, then one year in the AHL, and then the big show.
Really? I never exected him to even consider coming so soon. IMO its a bad idea and can ruin his development, juniors would probably be better for him if he wanted to come over, but right now he should stay in Finlands top league for at least a couple of years to properly develop. Finns usually have an easier time adaptng to physical NA hockey than other Europeans because most of them play with the same grit in thier games but he is still way too slight for NA pro hockey.

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04-23-2009, 11:12 PM
  #486
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Really? I never exected him to even consider coming so soon. IMO its a bad idea and can ruin his development, juniors would probably be better for him if he wanted to come over, but right now he should stay in Finlands top league for at least a couple of years to properly develop. Finns usually have an easier time adaptng to physical NA hockey than other Europeans because most of them play with the same grit in thier games but he is still way too slight for NA pro hockey.
You'd be surprised, this is a tough kid. However, you may be right that he could stay in the FEL for a few seasons before coming to NA.

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04-24-2009, 04:05 AM
  #487
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I'd say one more season in the Ilves organization, then one year in the AHL, and then the big show.
I'd say at least two seasons in Ilves and then NHL

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04-24-2009, 06:25 AM
  #488
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I'd say at least two seasons in Ilves and then NHL
I'd guess two seasons with Ilves, then a Mikko Koivu type deal with an NHL club that allows him to play the first year in Europe if he doesnt' get an immediate place after training camp.


Last edited by Jussi: 04-24-2009 at 06:32 AM.
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04-24-2009, 06:46 AM
  #489
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It also depends of the team...

I don't think he can play bottom line NHL role.

If the team that draft him is stacked offensively he might have some icetime in the AHL.

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Old
04-24-2009, 07:14 AM
  #490
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I'd guess two seasons with Ilves, then a Mikko Koivu type deal with an NHL club that allows him to play the first year in Europe if he doesnt' get an immediate place after training camp.
That's my wish.

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04-26-2009, 12:48 PM
  #491
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anyone got some highlights on the kid this U-18 tournament? I would really like to see how my future superstar florida panther played.

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04-26-2009, 12:53 PM
  #492
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anyone got some highlights on the kid this U-18 tournament? I would really like to see how my future superstar florida panther played.



Just plain out mean to wish upon an offensive player to be a panther in the future...



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04-26-2009, 02:26 PM
  #493
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Just plain out mean to wish upon an offensive player to be a panther in the future...


mark my words panthers will make the playoffs next year and it took 9 years but were finally getting it we have great prospects and our players are beginning to break out. rajala would fit in very will with markstrom but back on topic videos?

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04-26-2009, 03:46 PM
  #494
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Bronze medal game (Use Internet Explorer if it doesn't run in Firefox.)

Some youtube videos

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04-26-2009, 04:42 PM
  #495
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Bronze medal game (Use Internet Explorer if it doesn't run in Firefox.)

Some youtube videos
thanks alot

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04-29-2009, 03:32 AM
  #496
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I'd say one more season in the Ilves organization, then one year in the AHL, and then the big show.
Don't see that happening. This season he will play fulltime and then there is always the compulsory "half army half play"-season which he better deal with before going to NA. So, at least two seasons here.

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04-29-2009, 07:23 AM
  #497
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I'd say one more season in the Ilves organization, then one year in the AHL, and then the big show.
2 Seasons in Ilves, 3 seasons in Grand Rapids, then Red Wings.


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04-30-2009, 01:47 PM
  #498
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I would like to see Rajala stay in Finland until he is ready to step right into 2nd-3rd line in NHL, if he is given enough icetime to support his development in Ilves. The need for adaptation period for NA style of game in AHL is a myth.

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04-30-2009, 02:05 PM
  #499
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If size was not an issue, where do you guys think he'd be drafted? top 15 maybe?

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04-30-2009, 02:46 PM
  #500
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Quote:
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I would like to see Rajala stay in Finland until he is ready to step right into 2nd-3rd line in NHL, if he is given enough icetime to support his development in Ilves. The need for adaptation period for NA style of game in AHL is a myth.
Probably not so much about level of the game of the AHL but more about the ice dimension, language and tactical aspects that are real issues when you invest so much money on a player.

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