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World Junior Championship Discuss international tournaments such as the World Juniors, Olympic hockey, and Ice Hockey World Championships, as they take place; or discuss past tournaments.

Has Russia overtaken the #1 spot in World Hockey?

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Old
12-04-2012, 03:41 PM
  #226
Yakushev72
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Originally Posted by CoolForumNamePending View Post
Actually that number has pretty much held steady if not increased slightly over the past decade or so. The demo that has seen a decline in the past decade has been Europeans, but I think that is more to do with choice than anything else. Currently (even without the lockout) I would think there is more NHL level talent playing outside of the NHL than at anytime since the old eastern bloc fininshed disolving.

I agree with the other things you have said though. Canada's raw numbers are a big advantage (I also wonder if development curve might play a factor as well) when it comes to age restriction tournaments but once you open things up to the senior level things become much more level.

On another note I think a lot of people overrate the amount of elite NHL talent or even NHL talent in general you need to field a contending national team and I think there is plenty of evidence to back that opinion up. Obviously if I had a choice between a team made up from top to bottom of elite NHL talent or not I am taking my chances with the former but it is hardly a gaurantee or even a prerequisite to having success.
Any decline is likely a result of the "Russian factor," but the Swedish, Finnish, Czech and Slovakian programs have grown so much in quality that I beiieve their numbers will increase in the NHL. But I agree that the NHL is no longer the sole barometer of quality.

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12-04-2012, 03:44 PM
  #227
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Originally Posted by Yakushev72 View Post
Any decline is likely a result of the "Russian factor," but the Swedish, Finnish, Czech and Slovakian programs have grown so much in quality that I beiieve their numbers will increase in the NHL. But I agree that the NHL is no longer the sole barometer of quality.
It does however carry more weight than any other league when factoring talent pools.

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12-04-2012, 03:45 PM
  #228
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Originally Posted by Yakushev72 View Post
No. Yakupov, Kosov, Sigarev, Khoklachev, Grigorenko, Mironov, Dyakov, Naumenkov, Makarov and Vasilevskiy will play in Ufa. The remaining 8 forwards and 7 defenseman are up for grabs.
Odd, since I'm looking at the list of both the SS and the list of 31 players invited to Novogorsk for selection camp, other than 3 names, they are pretty much identical.

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12-04-2012, 03:51 PM
  #229
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Originally Posted by Yakushev72 View Post
No. Yakupov, Kosov, Sigarev, Khoklachev, Grigorenko, Mironov, Dyakov, Naumenkov, Makarov and Vasilevskiy will play in Ufa. The remaining 8 forwards and 7 defenseman are up for grabs.
So 40% are 100% guaranteed to be there, if even 3 more from the SSS mk it, more than 50% of team Russia will be from the SSS. And lets be honest, they best forwards and goalie were in the SSS. They sent their best to the SSS.


It seems Russia sent a team to gel, where Canada used it as a prospect feeler.

Neither is a bad idea, but to say it is proof Russia is now superior is laughable.

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12-04-2012, 04:03 PM
  #230
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No, Canada is still #1 in the world. The 2010 Olympics proved this if anything, not to mention no one has our top level players and depth. Last I checked Russia got shellacked 7-3 by us in the Olympics in an elimination game. The World Juniors have been a little different story lately. 2011 and 2012 Russia beat Canada in games that all Canadians would like to forget even though they were close. Since the WJC is annual you can't get into much of a heat of the moment thing but instead combine the recent years. Canada missed the gold medal game in 2012 for the first time in 11 years. Considering there is a different team every year that is just insane success. Not to mention in that 11 years there were 5 golds in a row. Also Canada has medalled every year since 1999, then missed in 1998 and then 5 straight gold before that. Basically there has been one time in the last 20 years where Canada didn't medal. That's insane.

Throw in the first overall picks in the new millennium. Canada has had 8 out of 14 (I am assuming MacKinnon goes first in 2013).

Also throw in that we have won 3 out of the last 4 best on best tournaments and have a staggering potential line up set for Sochi in 2014. I would love an 8 game Summit with Russia though. But we'll just have to settle on seeing how we do in their barn this year and then in Sochi. If Russia wins in Sochi then - and only then - can the conversation begin about Russia overtaking Canada.

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12-04-2012, 04:12 PM
  #231
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...and yet Russian players will choose to go to the KHL every time, while Americans and Canadians will consider less money in Switzerland. That's the point. Russian players feel much more comfortable at home in their surroundings, while many North Americans cannot handle it and would prefer a much more comfortable choice like Sweden or Switzerland. Russians must make the cultural leap to North America.
Very true in general, if you don't feel most comfortable at home then something is seriously wrong with home. The linguistic and cultural challenges between NA and Russia are similar both ways. The big difference is that going one way you have get used to a much higher standard of living and vice versa the other way. Obviously people will endure a lot more if they think their new home will improve their lives.


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12-04-2012, 04:54 PM
  #232
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Agreed. I wish Hockey Canada would have them play in more developmental games, would allow Canada to become an even better team. Being thrown together last minute when most other teams have had far more games to prep and gel seems like a slight disadvantage to Canada.
This is a very smart move by the Russians and something they no doubt learned from their Soviet days. In these short tournaments prep time and experience playing games together is of paramount importance and already Russia will have an advantage before the WJC even starts.

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12-04-2012, 05:29 PM
  #233
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Originally Posted by Yakushev72 View Post
Any decline is likely a result of the "Russian factor," but the Swedish, Finnish, Czech and Slovakian programs have grown so much in quality that I beiieve their numbers will increase in the NHL. But I agree that the NHL is no longer the sole barometer of quality.
The first decade of this century saw the results of huge stagnation in European talent development. The NHL draft numbers were there for the start of the decade, however, when you look closely, the talent itself has been quite weak.

Sweden had a very poor development system and as such up until 2007/08 we saw very little from them. Finland up until 2010 (and the impact is still felt a little) had very little talent. Slovakia produces virtually no talent right now. The Czechs are drastically down on what they used to produce.

Russia is a slightly different case, in that they had a semi golden generation compacted into a few years, then after 04 had nothing and are only beginning to see serious improvements again IMO. I think Russian hockey can only go up from here too, given the structural changes. Under the right guidance (and whether that is there, who knows, the expansion of the KHL into the west is retarded) Russia will see vast improvements.

Basically, my point is, Canada at the Junior level is the best nation consistently, but it has had it's capabilities accentuated because other nations have had poor age groups this century (Until recently). Now that Sweden, US, Russia and perhaps Finland have regularly strong age groups, we are seeing that Canada will not win every year.

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12-04-2012, 05:36 PM
  #234
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Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
No, Canada is still #1 in the world. The 2010 Olympics proved this if anything, not to mention no one has our top level players and depth. Last I checked Russia got shellacked 7-3 by us in the Olympics in an elimination game. The World Juniors have been a little different story lately. 2011 and 2012 Russia beat Canada in games that all Canadians would like to forget even though they were close. Since the WJC is annual you can't get into much of a heat of the moment thing but instead combine the recent years. Canada missed the gold medal game in 2012 for the first time in 11 years. Considering there is a different team every year that is just insane success. Not to mention in that 11 years there were 5 golds in a row. Also Canada has medalled every year since 1999, then missed in 1998 and then 5 straight gold before that. Basically there has been one time in the last 20 years where Canada didn't medal. That's insane.

Throw in the first overall picks in the new millennium. Canada has had 8 out of 14 (I am assuming MacKinnon goes first in 2013).

Also throw in that we have won 3 out of the last 4 best on best tournaments and have a staggering potential line up set for Sochi in 2014. I would love an 8 game Summit with Russia though. But we'll just have to settle on seeing how we do in their barn this year and then in Sochi. If Russia wins in Sochi then - and only then - can the conversation begin about Russia overtaking Canada.
Using 1st round overall picks is laughable. The NHL draft is NA biased and frankly, #1 for any given age group has no significant statistical value when suggesting Canada is #1 has an entity. It is almost a worthless statistic when you use it alone.

I happen to agree with your overall view to an extent, but how you've frameworked the argument is quite irrational.

If Russia wins in Sochi, it doesn't neccessairly suggest they are #1 either. These best on tournaments happen so infrequently, and are relatively close in terms of abilities, that it should not be used as a definitive answer to anything. I see people constantly suggesting that Russia cannot win in Sochi because they were spanked by Canada in 2012 with the same core. Do people not realise in a best on bets one game show any result is possible with many different outcomes. If the NHL has parity, and it does, then international ice hockey does too.

Canada is the best hockey nation overall, but they are not dominant or infallible, and are very beatable. Most Europeans recognize and acknowledge this. It would be nice if some Canadians showed some humility however, and realised that they are not that far ahead internationally speaking, and can be beaten in any tournament at any time. Ice hockey does not revolve around you, however much you may think it does.

*Note the rant in the final paragraph is not directly aimed at yourself.

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12-04-2012, 05:39 PM
  #235
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I'd disagree. I do however think that whomever is selecting and working with the Jnr Russian National team is doing a better job than hockey Canada.

Hockey Canada here is seen as an incompetent organization tbh. For big int'l competitions like the Olympics it doesn't matter (well they did select Rob Zamuner, Shayne Corson for 98, other weird selections in 06 etc) however the selection process and staff for WJC and WHC needs to be spot on and it often is not.

I'd rank the US and Canada ahead of Russia right now. Once there are 30-40+ notable Russians playing in the NHL again and their national team's best roster looks decent then I'll reconsider but atm it has holes.

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12-04-2012, 05:42 PM
  #236
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J17 Vs Proclamation View Post

Canada is the best hockey nation overall, but they are not dominant or infallible, and are very beatable. Most Europeans recognize and acknowledge this. It would be nice if some Canadians showed some humility however, and realised that they are not that far ahead internationally speaking, and can be beaten in any tournament at any time. Ice hockey does not revolve around you, however much you may think it does.

*Note the rant in the final paragraph is not directly aimed at yourself.
For me and I assume many Canadians, we expect to win. We see ourselves as the best and when we lose it is a disappointment. This does not mean we think we cannot be beat, but when you go in the favorite nearly every year and have the best record all time, it is something that comes naturally.

We may not be as far ahead as some like to think, but we have been dominant so often it is understandable some feel this way.

Will we win, maybe, there is a good chance, but there is also a good chance we lose. I would put us in more favorable odds than any other single country, but not all others combined. If that makes me arrogant, then so be it.

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12-04-2012, 05:56 PM
  #237
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I would say no because of the lack of Russia success in a best-on-best format (last and only championship was the 1981 Canada Cup). This was the same answer I gave in 2009 when Team Russia looked really good winning the 2008 and 2009 WHC (one of which was on the North American ice dimensions). At the time, it seemed that the Russian defense and coaching style had the answers for the Canadian style of play (with numerous elite Canadian players in the line-up). Jump to the Olympics, however, and the same defense and coaching looked seriously over-matched against Team Canada in a best-on-best format. The Russian defense couldn't handle the speed and forecheck pressure of the Canadian forwads and Bykov was unable or unwilling to recognize that Babcock was getting the match-ups he wanted, despite Bykov having last change.

Should Russia win on home soil in a best-on-best format in 2014 then they would have a improved case to present.

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12-04-2012, 06:32 PM
  #238
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Considering both junior and senior level.

With the recent success at the junior hockey (winning couple super series, winning gold and silver at WJHC) plus being constantly successful at senior tourneys for the last 5 years(mostly WHC, Olympics was failed), can we say that at this point Russia is the #1 nation in hockey?

No troll thread, just an opinion.
It's unfair to Canada to fault them for barely losing the super series. The current format is (6 games Russia Junior Team) vs (2WHL 2OHL 2 QMJHL). This means that on average only 1/3 of Canada's best players played in each match.

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12-04-2012, 06:40 PM
  #239
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Originally Posted by ViD View Post
Considering both junior and senior level.

With the recent success at the junior hockey (winning couple super series, winning gold and silver at WJHC) plus being constantly successful at senior tourneys for the last 5 years(mostly WHC, Olympics was failed), can we say that at this point Russia is the #1 nation in hockey?

No troll thread, just an opinion.
Wait what?

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12-04-2012, 08:18 PM
  #240
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So a country that has yet to win a best-on-best Olympics has overtaken a country that has won half of them? In what bizarro universe does that happen?

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12-04-2012, 08:25 PM
  #241
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When I look at Russian defense, I'm forced to say no. No idea how they would play as a group, but individually, it looks pretty weak.

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12-04-2012, 08:32 PM
  #242
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Originally Posted by stlblues9 View Post
Imagine putting one Canadian team and sending them to Russia and splitting Russia into 3 teams. I think it would be a blowout every game.
I disagree completely. Top guys from Russia werent even being used every game.. ie. Grigs, Zlobin, Zykov, Sergeyev all from the Q only played 1 or 2 games. Same with some of the O and W guys (don't even think Delnov got in a game).
Russia was using a small core for every game with additions form each league. sure they used crappy Dmen like Vasilevski and a few others every game, but they have no business playing at that level. Yakupov, Naumenkov and Shalunov were the only studs to play every game and Yakupov was not one of the better players in the series.
Consider that team Russia brought only 1 of 4 NHL drafted defenseman and left off Tryamkin, one of the better young Dmen in Russia who will be on the final roster. If you include the likes of Slepyshev, Prohorkin, Tolchinsky, Goldobin, Barabanov, Osnovin, Shabunov etc guys who didn't even get the call you could easily pile up 3 very good teams.
If it were 3 teams vs. 3 teams, the games would be very close.

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12-04-2012, 09:04 PM
  #243
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Originally Posted by malkinfan View Post
I disagree completely. Top guys from Russia werent even being used every game.. ie. Grigs, Zlobin, Zykov, Sergeyev all from the Q only played 1 or 2 games. Same with some of the O and W guys (don't even think Delnov got in a game).
Russia was using a small core for every game with additions form each league. sure they used crappy Dmen like Vasilevski and a few others every game, but they have no business playing at that level. Yakupov, Naumenkov and Shalunov were the only studs to play every game and Yakupov was not one of the better players in the series.
Consider that team Russia brought only 1 of 4 NHL drafted defenseman and left off Tryamkin, one of the better young Dmen in Russia who will be on the final roster. If you include the likes of Slepyshev, Prohorkin, Tolchinsky, Goldobin, Barabanov, Osnovin, Shabunov etc guys who didn't even get the call you could easily pile up 3 very good teams.
If it were 3 teams vs. 3 teams, the games would be very close.
Facts... Try to use them next time

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kessly Snipes View Post
No, they had players from 3 different leagues. Each got 2 games. There were common staples for each of those 2 games, but no single player was in all 6 games, infact no single player player more than 2 games.

The numbers

Teams Canada
Total # of Players - 88
  • Players to play 2 games - 36 - 40.9%
  • Players to play 1 game - 50 - 56.8%
  • Players to play 0 games - 2 - 2.2%

Team Russia
Total # of Players - 31
  • Players to play 6 games - 12 - 38.7%
  • Players to play 5 games - 4 - 12.9%
  • Players to play 4 games - 3 - 9.6%
  • Players to play 3 games - 3 - 9.6%
  • Players to play 2 games - 4 - 12.9%
  • Players to play 1 games - 5 - 16.1%

70.9% of Russian plays played more than 2 games. 0% of Canadian players played more than 2 games.

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12-04-2012, 09:50 PM
  #244
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Also lets drop the act and not include the WJC as a "best on best" tournament. The other year Pääjärvi was stopped from participating. This year, Ottawa is trying to stop Zibanejad from participating while it seems no eligible AHL Canadian player will be held from the Canadian WJC squad.

Should Ottawa get their will through, the WHC count a whole hell of a lot higher. In WHC it's up to the individual player if they wanna participate or not. Certain clubs can't cripple certain national teams while sending off their own countrymen. I would be surprised if Ottawa sticks to their rotten guns. Is hockey such a minor sport that anything goes ?

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12-04-2012, 09:52 PM
  #245
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In regards to the WJC, this will be the year where Canada will actually be able to send their best players. Russian has for the most part been doing this year after year so lets hold judgement until after this tournament.

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12-04-2012, 10:02 PM
  #246
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Why is USA being spoken of as the 2nd or 3rd best hockey nation? They are 5th, at best. Canada Russia Sweden and Finland would crush them in a best of anything higher than 1 serie. The olympics is the best international tournament, sure, but everyone could see several good nations underperform, and Miller playing like a beast.

Since so many have brought up world cup, doesn't USA usually have to qualify to even continue playing in the top level version of the world cup?

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12-05-2012, 12:46 AM
  #247
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Why is USA being spoken of as the 2nd or 3rd best hockey nation? They are 5th, at best. Canada Russia Sweden and Finland would crush them in a best of anything higher than 1 serie. The olympics is the best international tournament, sure, but everyone could see several good nations underperform, and Miller playing like a beast.

Since so many have brought up world cup, doesn't USA usually have to qualify to even continue playing in the top level version of the world cup?
I don't think you know what the World Cup is in hockey.


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12-05-2012, 12:49 AM
  #248
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Originally Posted by Mr Kanadensisk View Post
Very true in general, if you don't feel most comfortable at home then something is seriously wrong with home. The linguistic and cultural challenges between NA and Russia are similar both ways. The big difference is that going one way you have get used to a much higher standard of living and vice versa the other way. Obviously people will endure a lot more if they think their new home will improve their lives.
Professional athletes are in a demographic that doesn't really matter where they live because the their income ensures a quality of life regardless. Russians come to North America because it's the highest standard league in their profession. Same reasons Americans sign in countries like Mexico for soccer.

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12-05-2012, 12:58 AM
  #249
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One of those is not like the others.
USA, obviously

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12-05-2012, 04:21 AM
  #250
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For me, whichever country performs the best in the Olympics is the best international country, the WJC and WHC have nothing on the Olympics.

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