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Roster Talk '13 — Latvia

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Old
12-04-2012, 03:48 PM
  #26
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Originally Posted by jfb392 View Post
Looks like the Sabres will not be letting Girgensons go.
Apparently wasting away in the AHL is much more important.
you're joking....

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12-04-2012, 04:07 PM
  #27
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Originally Posted by jfb392 View Post
Looks like the Sabres will not be letting Girgensons go.
Apparently wasting away in the AHL is much more important.
Just looking at the situation from a distance and probably with a whole lot of ignorance (please feel free to educate me) Buffalo's handling of him to this point seems weird. An 18 year old jumping from the USHL to the AHL... How often do you see that? Does Buffalo dislike the univesity route that much? I haven't seen him play but his stat line isn't impressive in the least. How much ice time is he getting? Would getting big minutes/'go-to-guy' role (I assume) in a tournament against his peer group really be that bad? Is Buffalo's goal to have him top out as a 4th liner?

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12-04-2012, 04:08 PM
  #28
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Originally Posted by wings5 View Post
you're joking....
Nope, unfortunately I'm not:
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MatthewWGR @BuffNewsVogl FYI Ron Rolston told me yesterday he believed Zemgus was going to stay in the AHL
http://twitter.com/MatthewWGR/status/276068716880474113

I'm sure he regrets not going to UVM and going all Wheeler/Schultz on their *****.
They convinced him he was ready for the AHL and possibly the NHL based on a summer development camp against his own peers and got him to sign a contract, then basically threw him in purgatory.
You'd think that they'd want to give their most recent first round pick that they traded up to select every opportunity to succeed, but they do a lot of things that don't make sense (like having the same man as coach for 15 years now).

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Originally Posted by CoolForumNamePending View Post
Just looking at the situation from a distance and probably with a whole lot of ignorance (please feel free to educate me) Buffalo's handling of him to this point seems weird. An 18 year old jumping from the USHL to the AHL... How often do you see that? Does Buffalo dislike the univesity route that much? I haven't seen him play but his stat line isn't impressive in the least. How much ice time is he getting? Would getting big minutes/'go-to-guy' role (I assume) in a tournament against his peer group really be that bad? Is Buffalo's goal to have him top out as a 4th liner?
Well, as far as I know, an 18 year old had never jumped from the USHL to AHL prior to this and teams looking to try it should use Girgensons as a case against attempting it.
They don't dislike the college route but UVM isn't the best program out there.
However, it's still better than throwing the kid in a situation he's not ready for.

He started out on the third line in Rochester and was useless and his linemates generated seemingly every chance without him, then was moved up to the second line after injuries and continued to look out of place and had no scoring touch, even with PP time.
He also often ended up on the bad end of hits and was injured after being destoryed by Adam Larsson (may have happened a few games prior when he was destroyed by Hugh Jessiman twice on the same shift, but the Larsson hit was the one credited for taking him out) and is still currently out with an "upper body injury".

At this point, yes, it looks like the Sabres are grooming him to be a fourth liner with zero scoring touch.


Last edited by jfb392: 12-04-2012 at 04:17 PM.
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12-04-2012, 04:40 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by jfb392 View Post
I'm sure he regrets not going to UVM and going all Wheeler/Schultz on their *****.
They convinced him he was ready for the AHL and possibly the NHL based on a summer development camp against his own peers and got him to sign a contract, then basically threw him in purgatory.
You'd think that they'd want to give their most recent first round pick that they traded up to select every opportunity to succeed, but they do a lot of things that don't make sense (like having the same man as coach for 15 years now).
While I would have liked him to go to the WJC, he could not have gone the Wheeler/Schultz route, because the year after he got drafted he would have played in the NCAA, as opposed to the BCHL or USHL like Schultz and Wheeler did respectively. A player that was drafted that could theoretically go that route would be MacKenzie MacEachern with the Blues, as he was drafted, is playing in the USHL this year, and will go to the NCAA next year. However, there is considerable doubt as to whether this loophole will remain open after the new CBA agreement.

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12-04-2012, 04:46 PM
  #30
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Originally Posted by latvianhockeyfan View Post
Girgensons, Blugers- playing in leagues where U-20 USA, Canada players are playing.

Lipsbergs- start season badly, but now he is scoring in every CHL game.

Jevpalovs- are great fighter and can be very good and has good chemistry with Lipsbergs.

Bukarts- Give him a good partners and their line will be producing goals.

Kuzmenkovs- 26 points in Belarus league and playing very good in defense.(+/- +12)

If I compare Czechs first two lines and ours, there will not be big difference, but our defense are far away from Czechs defense.
That's an all right group for Latvia, but it doesn't have the skill or offensive ability of the Czechs. Slovaks, maybe, but not the Czech's. I agree that it's beneficial to have these players playing against the top North American players on a regular basis, but the Czech players do the same and do a better job of it. The entire top 6 of the Czech team are drafted by NHL teams with two selected in the first and two in the second rounds.

Sure, Faksa and Girgensons can lineup together pretty evenly, and Hyka and Blugars can as well. However where do the rest of the Latvians lineup against the Czechs? Is there anyone who's as good as Hertl? Nope. Anyone who can score as naturally as Frk? Nope. A top line power forward like Jaskin? Nope. Protect the puck and produce offensively like Stransky? Nope.

I can see that Latvia can match up in two places, but those other 4 Czechs are better players than what Latvia can offer. Don't forget that the Czechs still have Vrana, Sedlak and Beran up front too.

I don't think they're really close at all.

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12-04-2012, 04:52 PM
  #31
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To clarify my earlier report on Zemgus, Rolston said he believed Z was staying w Amerks. Didn't say final decision was made.
It's not official, I think they'll send him, there's no reason not to, it's not like he's integral to the Amerks success.

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12-04-2012, 04:55 PM
  #32
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While I would have liked him to go to the WJC, he could not have gone the Wheeler/Schultz route, because the year after he got drafted he would have played in the NCAA, as opposed to the BCHL or USHL like Schultz and Wheeler did respectively. A player that was drafted that could theoretically go that route would be MacKenzie MacEachern with the Blues, as he was drafted, is playing in the USHL this year, and will go to the NCAA next year. However, there is considerable doubt as to whether this loophole will remain open after the new CBA agreement.
Well, he could have opted for another year with Dubuque or stayed at UVM for four years and became a free agent after graduating, which is technically different than Schultz and is unlikely to be closed.

Even if he didn't opt to go to free agency (I know that I'd at least keep my options open if I was in the same situation because I find the organization to be mediocre and I'm a Sabres fan), he should have at least realized that they were trying to do too much too quickly and went to college where the Sabres have no control over him.

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12-04-2012, 06:11 PM
  #33
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He started out on the third line in Rochester and was useless and his linemates generated seemingly every chance without him, then was moved up to the second line after injuries and continued to look out of place and had no scoring touch, even with PP time.
That's not at all what I saw when I saw him earlier this season. He stood out by leaps and bounds among his 3rd line team mates, and it was them that couldn't finish anything Zemgus set-up. He was getting plenty of scoring chances too, just couldn't finish (which it looks like is still an issue). Either way, I'm surprised they won't be releasing him for the Worlds with guys like RNH getting the go ahead. Then again, maybe he wants to stay to keep his spot on the roster and show a commitment to growing his pro game, although if he isn't losing it during this little injury bout, he likely won't lose it for the WJrs either.

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12-04-2012, 06:49 PM
  #34
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That's not at all what I saw when I saw him earlier this season. He stood out by leaps and bounds among his 3rd line team mates, and it was them that couldn't finish anything Zemgus set-up. He was getting plenty of scoring chances too, just couldn't finish (which it looks like is still an issue). Either way, I'm surprised they won't be releasing him for the Worlds with guys like RNH getting the go ahead. Then again, maybe he wants to stay to keep his spot on the roster and show a commitment to growing his pro game, although if he isn't losing it during this little injury bout, he likely won't lose it for the WJrs either.
nice - thats what i saw too.. not consistently, but from time to time he shown what he capable of (in a good way)..

well lets hope he comes to WJrs. Maybe Ted Nolan will help somehow in talks with Amerks. as per latvian press he will be a unofficial assistant to the coaches.. and have show a lot of interest in our u20 team.

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12-04-2012, 07:11 PM
  #35
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That's not at all what I saw when I saw him earlier this season. He stood out by leaps and bounds among his 3rd line team mates, and it was them that couldn't finish anything Zemgus set-up. He was getting plenty of scoring chances too, just couldn't finish (which it looks like is still an issue). Either way, I'm surprised they won't be releasing him for the Worlds with guys like RNH getting the go ahead. Then again, maybe he wants to stay to keep his spot on the roster and show a commitment to growing his pro game, although if he isn't losing it during this little injury bout, he likely won't lose it for the WJrs either.
The only time he's really capable of generating anything, it's by himself.
The game is too fast for him at this level right now and he's been relatively useless in the offensive zone, bad in the defensive zone (he chases the puck constantly), and as hard as he tries, cannot compete physically.

After he was removed from his original line, his linemates started to look better than when they were with him (Brian Flynn particularly took off) and Zemgus was placed with the misfits of the team for a bit (Luke Adam and Mark Mancari, both have been awful and don't fit anywhere in the lineup) before he was injured.

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12-04-2012, 10:37 PM
  #36
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Is this official Girgensons won`t go? if so then **** sabres leadership not only because of not lettim him go to wjc,but throwing him into AHL,when he could have developed in WHL or NCAA. One of our best porspects in years turning in to 4th liner.. Thanks Sabres management!

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12-04-2012, 10:43 PM
  #37
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I hope Bukarts stays home as long as possible so he wouldnt get screwed by stupid coaches in NA like girgensons.

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12-04-2012, 10:47 PM
  #38
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Is this official Girgensons won`t go? if so then **** sabres leadership not only because of not lettim him go to wjc,but throwing him into AHL,when he could have developed in WHL or NCAA. One of our best porspects in years turning in to 4th liner.. Thanks Sabres management!
No one has come out with anything official regarding Girgs going or not, I imagine he will be going. The only thing that was said is that Rolston believes he will not be going, nothing is set in stone.

Since you have a crystal ball please tell me how does Grigs turn out?

You're clearly very passionate about Girgs being from Latvia and all and I want the best for him too, but it's too early to claim anything about him being a 4th liner...

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12-04-2012, 10:50 PM
  #39
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Originally Posted by Helo View Post
Is this official Girgensons won`t go? if so then **** sabres leadership not only because of not lettim him go to wjc,but throwing him into AHL,when he could have developed in WHL or NCAA. One of our best porspects in years turning in to 4th liner.. Thanks Sabres management!
While I'm sure it's easy to blame the Sabres, Girgensons agent should have advised him to not sign if they didn't think he was ready. So should have the Latvian hockey federation, and if they were smart, they would have gotten a former player to advise him as well.

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12-04-2012, 10:52 PM
  #40
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No one has come out with anything official regarding Girgs going or not, I imagine he will be going. The only thing that was said is that Rolston believes he will not be going, nothing is set in stone.

Since you have a crystal ball please tell me how does Grigs turn out?

You're clearly very passionate about Girgs being from Latvia and all and I want the best for him too, but it's too early to claim anything about him being a 4th liner...
No,but if girgensons continues to play in AHL he won`t be anything more than a 4th liner,as stated above the level and the speed of the AHL is just too much for him at this point.

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12-04-2012, 11:08 PM
  #41
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Don't like how Kulda is developing in the W and don't consider him a lock at this point.
How come?

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12-04-2012, 11:10 PM
  #42
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How come?
What do you mean? he has scored only 3 goals over the course of the season.

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12-04-2012, 11:19 PM
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What do you mean? he has scored only 3 goals over the course of the season.
So? What were you expecting? You do realize the Oil Kings are a deep team stacked with returning players right? Do you think the foreign 17yr old was going to roll into town and play on the first line and first unit pp?

What the stats dont tell you is that Kulda has grown leaps and bounds as a player since he first arrived. He went from not even belonging on the ice or even being at a bare minimum whl level, to holding his own and then some.

Kid has really improved and grown on me in the short time he has been here. He really has a lot of heart, too much at times, dropping the mitts with noted league heavies even. He is coming along quite well imo.

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12-05-2012, 02:58 AM
  #44
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Originally Posted by latvianhockeyfan View Post
Girgensons, Blugers- playing in leagues where U-20 USA, Canada players are playing.

Lipsbergs- start season badly, but now he is scoring in every CHL game.

Jevpalovs- are great fighter and can be very good and has good chemistry with Lipsbergs.

Bukarts- Give him a good partners and their line will be producing goals.

Kuzmenkovs- 26 points in Belarus league and playing very good in defense.(+/- +12)

If I compare Czechs first two lines and ours, there will not be big difference, but our defense are far away from Czechs defense.

Yeah but the Belarus leauge is a beer leauge. Where is Egle?

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12-05-2012, 03:22 AM
  #45
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Yeah but the Belarus leauge is a beer leauge. Where is Egle?
Belarus league top 4 teams are good.. some ex khl players and experienced Belarussian players play there.. and Kuzmenkovs dominated the first part of the season there, he is good. i have seen him play in exhibition games with our nt, he`s pure fire,good skater, fearless and good playmaker. he was paired with Jelisejevs from hk Riga in the Telfs cup earlier this year .Kuzmenkovs had 6 assists in 3 games, Jelisejevs 4g+2a in 3..

Egle is too young i think . 96 born. his time to shine for u20 will come , for now, i guess he will play in u18.

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12-05-2012, 03:28 AM
  #46
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So? What were you expecting? You do realize the Oil Kings are a deep team stacked with returning players right? Do you think the foreign 17yr old was going to roll into town and play on the first line and first unit pp?

What the stats dont tell you is that Kulda has grown leaps and bounds as a player since he first arrived. He went from not even belonging on the ice or even being at a bare minimum whl level, to holding his own and then some.

Kid has really improved and grown on me in the short time he has been here. He really has a lot of heart, too much at times, dropping the mitts with noted league heavies even. He is coming along quite well imo.
agree, he`s getting better. scored a beauty and looks like gaining some confidence :

http://sportacentrs.com/hokejs/04122...sos_vartus_sos

i think Kristians Pelss had similar stats while adjusting to whl.

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12-05-2012, 09:18 AM
  #47
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No,but if girgensons continues to play in AHL he won`t be anything more than a 4th liner,as stated above the level and the speed of the AHL is just too much for him at this point.
Wow, the hyperbole here is just ridiculous. I remember Foligno starting off very slowly in the AHL last year too. And he was a full year older and he played in the WJCs and on a junior team when he was 19. Look at him now. Give the kid some time, he'll figure it out. I know JFB is on a quest to prove how smart he was, but let's let this thing play out. And honestly, we don't even know if he wanted to play in the tournament. The kid is goal oriented and wants to play in the NHL ASAP, maybe he wants to be closer to the coaches who will get him there as much as possible.

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12-05-2012, 11:39 AM
  #48
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That's not at all what I saw when I saw him earlier this season. He stood out by leaps and bounds among his 3rd line team mates, and it was them that couldn't finish anything Zemgus set-up. He was getting plenty of scoring chances too, just couldn't finish (which it looks like is still an issue). Either way, I'm surprised they won't be releasing him for the Worlds with guys like RNH getting the go ahead. Then again, maybe he wants to stay to keep his spot on the roster and show a commitment to growing his pro game, although if he isn't losing it during this little injury bout, he likely won't lose it for the WJrs either.
You have to understand that some Sabres fans took a very strong position over the summer about wanting Girgensons to avoid turning pro. And nothing short of a 30 goal season is going to change their position.

Ask anyone on the Sabres board, I'm about as critical as it gets on players. And I've liked Girgensons this year. You have to have realistic expectations. He's going to be a 3rd liner playing mostly a defensive game. And that's what he's done, and done well. Blocking shots, tough along the wall and playing physical. He's shown some offensive flashes, but it's definitely a work in progress. I think fans should be encouraged.

As for the WJC, I don't think he should go. He turned pro and his team is struggling and needs the bodies. They're playing an ECHL defenseman, who they loaned away last year, at forward. Depth is an issue on the Amerks.

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12-07-2012, 11:23 AM
  #49
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Why no Zintis Zusevics on roster ? He is playing for Graz99ers in EBEL league (where my local team plays). His stats aren't that good, one assist in 27 games, but in age of 18 as a foreginer he founded place on roster in men's league that is heavily relying on AHL level of imports.
The simple thing is that he's not good enough. EBEL is a good league but they have tested him and he hasn't shown anything much against other candidates. The same probably goes for Semjonovs who's not that bad in Swedish Division 1 but it's division 1 and our roster is deep this year. Even without the drafted duo, CHL trio and Kuzmenkovs from Belarus league (or Klavins from Elitserien if he comes) and Andersons who's played for his NLA side in a few non league games... Also MHL guys Bukarts, Dašutins and Jeļisējevs are over or close to 20 points there, last year at this time of year Roberts Lipsbergs had like 8 points or sth there and he was the top MHLer on the team...


As regards Tambijevs, you can hate or not hate him but please provide alternatives to MHL guys (except Klavins). Guys from Liepāja, MHL B division... you can take Kulda and Lipsbergs and compare how MHL and MHL B levels differ if you go to WHL next year.... A guy said that he doesn't like Kulda's stats... well, but it's no surprise that he's not a top scorer there as this is a completely new level for him. There is quite a big difference from MHL and MHL B, like between KHL and Belarus league. Sure Liepājas Metalurgs youth play great in MHL B but just look at how last year's MHL B winners are doing in MHL this year... They suck. While HK Riga is at least fighting for play-offs. It's one thing to beat Moldova hockey team 11:1 and another thing to play vs Moscow CSKA or Lokomotiv Yaroslavl hockey teams...

As regards Klavins case, all I've heard from his ''friends'' is that he doesn't like the coach (the hated Tambijevs) and Tambijevs in the interview repeated that he has the same information. The invitation to the previous training camp was issued- he was a no show. Please also note that we have not heard anything from Klavins, his side of the story (if Tambijevs is evil and a liar) so... maybe there's no other sides to this story. Also Tambijevs said that the list might not be complete and players still could be added, so all we have to do is wait. No doubt it would be cool to have him but if he doesn't want to come.

Tambijevs knows his HK Riga guys, he knows wht they can and cannot do and he knows that they have played at a similar level to the WJC (at least much similar than MHL B level is) and MHL guys have proven how good they are already last year when Jevpalovs and Lipsbergs, Kuzmenkovs and others were the leaders of the team while some others (including Klavins) flopped...

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12-07-2012, 11:39 AM
  #50
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Yeah but the Belarus leauge is a beer leauge. Where is Egle?
His team, Liepājas Metalurgs, recently lost to Finnish Mestis team only in overtime and the top teams of the league have in the past won vs EBEL teams and even KHL teams. Sure the level is gradually dropping and all the teams below top 6 are not really that good but the top is still nice. Note that this guy is also not having a super easy time there after a draft and being pretty good in OHL last year:
http://www.eliteprospects.com/player.php?player=70442

Egle is too young, I honestly do not see him being at the skill level for U20 yet. This year for Latvia's standards is pretty damn good. Even not talking about the two drafted guys in round 1 and 2, NOBODY of the U20 age has ever played as good as Kuzmenkovs and probably also Ozoliņš in Belarus league, at this age probably only Karsums (drafted 2nd round) was as good in WHL or any CHL league as Lipsbergs, as I already said MHL guys are also scoring much more than least year's bunch. Jevpalovs is actually scoring more (or about the same) than drafted Pelss in QMJHL that we had last year, Andersons is close to playing in Swiss NLA, if Kļaviņš would be there we'd have the first player from Elitserien in the U20 ever... For our standards if we talk about forwards we're stacked beyond belief. Defense is quite another issue....

Then again this ''stacked beyond belief'' only gives us the same what we had for U18 last year- a chance to fight vs Germans and Slovaks and Swiss maybe. Last year at U18 we beat both Germans and Switzerland but still weren't in top 6 and this is pretty much the same team + couple of 1993s... If all's well next year should be the year when our team at least offensively will be even better... At least I hope so, never know how players develop... But this year judging from stats actually nobody has regressed, don't know about Girgensons or Bļugers though but at least they play at much better leagues than last year.

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