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Are we at the end of Russian hockey greatness?

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07-21-2014, 09:05 PM
  #1
FedorBure
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Are we at the end of Russian hockey greatness?

Hello, I haven't watched hockey in about a decade and im just getting back into it.

I've noticed that there haven't been any SIGNIFICANT standouts since the Malkin/Ovechkin draft years.

Please prove me wrong and give me some hope. Russian hockey players are always the most interesting.

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07-21-2014, 09:11 PM
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jandro8alsaker
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What about nichushkin? He's a beast

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07-22-2014, 12:16 AM
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Ryker
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Originally Posted by jandro8alsaker View Post
What about nichushkin? He's a beast
He doesn't know about him, he hasn't watched hockey in a decade.

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07-22-2014, 01:23 PM
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Yakushev72
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Originally Posted by FedorBure View Post
Hello, I haven't watched hockey in about a decade and im just getting back into it.

I've noticed that there haven't been any SIGNIFICANT standouts since the Malkin/Ovechkin draft years.

Please prove me wrong and give me some hope. Russian hockey players are always the most interesting.
The quality of Russian players on the scene now are good as they have ever been in the post-Soviet era, and recent expansion and upgrade of pro leagues and the creation of a junior league suggest that in a few short years, Russian hockey will be better than it ever has been. There are plenty of talented young players like Tarasenko, Kuznetsov, Yakupov, Grigorenko, Nichushkin, Buchnevich who have the ability to be great players. Things have changed in the NHL draft after the creation of the KHL, and you don't get Russians drafted No. 1 in the NHL any more. Too risky for the NHL club. If you like Russian hockey players, you will be rewarded with some good crops of players pretty soon.

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07-22-2014, 01:35 PM
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wings5
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Originally Posted by Yakushev72 View Post
The quality of Russian players on the scene now are good as they have ever been in the post-Soviet era, and recent expansion and upgrade of pro leagues and the creation of a junior league suggest that in a few short years, Russian hockey will be better than it ever has been. There are plenty of talented young players like Tarasenko, Kuznetsov, Yakupov, Grigorenko, Nichushkin, Buchnevich who have the ability to be great players. Things have changed in the NHL draft after the creation of the KHL, and you don't get Russians drafted No. 1 in the NHL any more. Too risky for the NHL club. If you like Russian hockey players, you will be rewarded with some good crops of players pretty soon.
I think this is an overstatement a bit, imo Russian hockey will be hard pressed to touch players from the Konstantinov, Mogilny, Fedorov, Bure, Kovalev era again. Even the era before that with the Russian 5 is pretty untouchable imo.

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07-22-2014, 02:33 PM
  #6
habsrule4eva3089
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Russia's Golden Era of individual player brilliance is right now with the generational talents they have that will go down as some of the greatest to play the game.
The future doesn't bode too well for them in that sense, they very well may have better team success in an international setting, but in terms of individual brilliance even with the creation of their junior league as a poster above mentioned, they can't churn out prospects on a year to year basis, it'll be a very long time before we see consistently see a Kovalchuk,Ovechkin,Malkin type impactful player being produced who can just out right dominate proceedings starting as rookies. Nichuskin looks to be a gem, but we'll see if he ever reaches their level of play.

And it terms of greatness, Russia has not won an Olympic Gold Medal in what will be over 6 Olympics and 26 years when the puck drops on Pyeongchang, the greatness of their national team ended a very long time ago, and most posters would rank them 5th in terms of an actual ranking anytime a best on best is played.


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07-22-2014, 03:40 PM
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Caser
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Don't know if lack of bright individuals like Kovi/Ovi/Malkin means end of Russian hockey, I'm kind of fine with current Russian young player pool.

Btw, Vasilevskiy is, imo, an elite talent, but nobody cares, since he is a goalie, people need only stereotypical offensive Russian dynamos (and I actually hope that we can get one with Svechnikov).

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07-22-2014, 06:22 PM
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Yakushev72
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Originally Posted by wings5 View Post
I think this is an overstatement a bit, imo Russian hockey will be hard pressed to touch players from the Konstantinov, Mogilny, Fedorov, Bure, Kovalev era again. Even the era before that with the Russian 5 is pretty untouchable imo.
No, not overstated at all, since I qualified my remarks to refer to the "post-soviet era." Konstantinov, Mogilny, Bure, et.al, were all Soviet developed players.

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07-22-2014, 06:30 PM
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Originally Posted by GlobeHockey View Post
Russia's Golden Era of individual player brilliance is right now with the generational talents they have that will go down as some of the greatest to play the game.
The future doesn't bode too well for them in that sense, they very well may have better team success in an international setting, but in terms of individual brilliance even with the creation of their junior league as a poster above mentioned, they can't churn out prospects on a year to year basis, it'll be a very long time before we see consistently see a Kovalchuk,Ovechkin,Malkin type impactful player being produced who can just out right dominate proceedings starting as rookies. Nichuskin looks to be a gem, but we'll see if he ever reaches their level of play.

And it terms of greatness, Russia has not won an Olympic Gold Medal in what will be over 6 Olympics and 26 years when the puck drops on Pyeongchang, the greatness of their national team ended a very long time ago, and most posters would rank them 5th in terms of an actual ranking anytime a best on best is played.
The developments in Russian hockey in the last 5 years will likely have the effect of greatly increasing the numbers of top end hockey players in Russia. It will build depth, which is what is needed to win Olympic Gold Medals. Canada really only had a couple of superstars (Crosby, Toews), but they had excellent talent on every shift. Sure, Ovechkin, Malkin and Kovalchuk are great talents, but they haven't produced victories. None of the 3 is a leader - none of them played well or produced positive results in Sochi. Russia's leaders were Datsyuk and Radulov. If Russia builds the kind of depth that is expected, they will contend for Gold Medals at every level.

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07-22-2014, 09:44 PM
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wings5
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Originally Posted by Yakushev72 View Post
No, not overstated at all, since I qualified my remarks to refer to the "post-soviet era." Konstantinov, Mogilny, Bure, et.al, were all Soviet developed players.
I apologize I seem to have misread, in that regard I agree, though we haven't yet seen any Kovy, Ovi, Malkin level talents yet in the 90 born generation.

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07-22-2014, 10:50 PM
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Wings5 I agree with you. Russian 5 is untouchable. Possibly the greatest hockey ever seen. Unless 5 of the top Russian guys are together as a 5man unit again for like 10 years, then I don't think we'll see that again. Russian stars play too much of an individual type game these days. Datsyuk is the last of that Soviet era breed, he got good training playing with Larionov, Fedorov.

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07-23-2014, 10:08 AM
  #12
Atas2000
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Originally Posted by FedorBure View Post
Hello, I haven't watched hockey in about a decade and im just getting back into it.

I've noticed that there haven't been any SIGNIFICANT standouts since the Malkin/Ovechkin draft years.

Please prove me wrong and give me some hope. Russian hockey players are always the most interesting.
Malkin/Ovechkin being in the same draft year was a coincidence. If you count in Crosby being drafted the year after it's a huge coincidence players of such caliber are all so close in age. There was not one single player comparable since. Whatever you call them: "elite", "generational talents". It's not like you get a bunch of them every year. We as Russians were just lucky to get this huge generation and unlucky they couldn't win it all. It's like the Dutch in football in the 70s.


Of course we are waiting for the next super-huge-elite-generational-talent, but so far no luck. But that's true for other nations too.

But meanwhile it's not like the young guys are bad, not at all. And looking at our junior teams our future doesn't look dull at all, even without absolute standout players. We can ice a very competitive team of top notch players. If we get the next Malkin someday, we'll gladly take him

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07-23-2014, 10:25 AM
  #13
Atas2000
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Originally Posted by malkinfan View Post
Wings5 I agree with you. Russian 5 is untouchable. Possibly the greatest hockey ever seen. Unless 5 of the top Russian guys are together as a 5man unit again for like 10 years, then I don't think we'll see that again. Russian stars play too much of an individual type game these days. Datsyuk is the last of that Soviet era breed, he got good training playing with Larionov, Fedorov.
People get all caught in the Soviet breakdown hype and don't realize the soviet hockey system wasn't stagnating at some level it was ever improving and the very last breed of players was the best. On the russian side we also have the typical great-past-hype. However great Chernyshov and Tarasov's teams were, there were single superstars like Kharlamov or Maltsev. By the end of the Soviet Union Tikhonov's sbornaya was probably the most talented team ever in hockey.

Makarov-Larionov-Krutov
Khomutov-Bykov-Kamenskiy
Bure-Fedorov-Mogilny
Kvartalnov-Yashin-Nemchinov

add to that a top4 on D:

Fetisov-Kasatonov
Malakhov-Konstantinov

it was scary good. While I think they never played with exactly that roster, but mostly close to it.

The whole political turmoil robbed us of watching probably the most dominant line in hockey grow and gel together. I mean Bure-Fedorov-Mogilny.

After all that right now we are still in the 90s hole. It's very obvious. We'll ned some more years to overcome it completely and get the new system to produce players on regular basis.

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07-23-2014, 10:34 AM
  #14
Atas2000
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Originally Posted by Caser View Post
Don't know if lack of bright individuals like Kovi/Ovi/Malkin means end of Russian hockey, I'm kind of fine with current Russian young player pool.

Btw, Vasilevskiy is, imo, an elite talent, but nobody cares, since he is a goalie, people need only stereotypical offensive Russian dynamos (and I actually hope that we can get one with Svechnikov).
Svechnikov is a mystery to me. Not as overhyped as McDavid, but goes a very similar path. Everybody gets crazy over him, then on the NT I can't see why. Yes, he played in the KHL a couple of games as a 16y.o. and didn't look totally out of place, but only time will tell if he can meet the expectations when he's fully grown and competes against men. Same goes for MacDavid btw. I'm not at all rifidng this hype wave for him. I've seen him on the junior NT and he wasn't impressive at all. Of course he's young. Again like Svechnikov.

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07-23-2014, 11:41 AM
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When you look at the numbers Kuznetsov and Tarasenko put up at a young age it is something very few prospects have accomplished recently. Kuzetsov put up .73 ppg at 18 and .84 ppg as a 19 year old which is something no prospect since then. Tarasenko likewise at 20 put up over a ppg. These stats are also the highest in the newly established more competitive KHL era, Yakupov had a small sample size. Hopefully these two can become great players and I have high expectations for Buchnevich as well but we'll see what he accomplishes this upcoming season. It would have been interesting to see what prospects like Grigorenko, Kucherov could have done as u20s in the KHL.

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07-26-2014, 07:28 AM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caser View Post
Btw, Vasilevskiy is, imo, an elite talent, but nobody cares, since he is a goalie, people need only stereotypical offensive Russian dynamos (and I actually hope that we can get one with Svechnikov).
This actually is a good point. I find myself guilty of this as well. Still Vasilevsky has a lot to prove to in order to be mentioned in the same sentence as Ovi, Kovy and Malkin.

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07-26-2014, 09:28 PM
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The same thread could have applied to Canada back in 1998.

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08-04-2014, 03:06 AM
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No, not at the end, way past the end already. We have to deal with the problems of the 90s demographic crisis and the player development system that was essentially killed, so while mega talents will come every now and then, we'll need a decade IMO for our hockey to fully recover.

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08-04-2014, 01:04 PM
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and with all the best juniors leaving to NA it's even harder to breed Russian stars, instead of semi-this - semi-that players they often become to be.

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08-04-2014, 05:22 PM
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Yakushev72
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Originally Posted by Acallabeth View Post
No, not at the end, way past the end already. We have to deal with the problems of the 90s demographic crisis and the player development system that was essentially killed, so while mega talents will come every now and then, we'll need a decade IMO for our hockey to fully recover.
You are right. There is a big difference between talent and skill. Talent is just raw physical attributes, but skill is developed through years of training and drilling endlessly. Since 1993, Russia has produced some talented players, but not skilled in the same sense as the highly-trained Soviet products. The Soviet hockey system had the capacity to train players intensively. By 1993, the training system was virtually disbanded as sources of funding dried up. Even the top senior teams like Dynamo and Spartak could not make payroll for as much as 3 or 4 months at a time.

It seems like there is more investment now than in the '90's and 00's, but its going to take time for those investments to show through with results.

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