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07-21-2013, 07:45 PM
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Dallas Stars 2013 draft review


It might be a new ranch, but it is not his first rodeo. Dallas Stars new General Manager Jim Nill embarked on his first substantial opportunity to put his mark on his new team at the National Hockey League Entry Draft in Newark, NJ in the midst of an otherwise indiscernible June afternoon and evening. Nill and his staff entered the day with nine picks in seven rounds, including five of the first 68 selections. Like many drafts as they approach, this one was touted as the “next great one” and if that is any indication (it normally is not), the Stars were primed to really push their already burgeoning prospect pool to the boiling point.… read more



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07-21-2013, 08:20 PM
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thank you, always a good read as usual

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07-21-2013, 08:36 PM
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Rune Forumwalker
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Glad this is finally out, now I can't wait until the next prospect rankings to see what grade Nichushkin gets. Is it just an 8, or does he have a chance at a 9?

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07-21-2013, 08:52 PM
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Amazing write up, thanks soooo much!

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07-21-2013, 09:03 PM
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Awesome work, Mike. Great read as always.

I especially loved your nice way of saying Elie's skating sucks

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07-21-2013, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Rune Forumwalker View Post
Glad this is finally out, now I can't wait until the next prospect rankings to see what grade Nichushkin gets. Is it just an 8, or does he have a chance at a 9?
I'm hoping for 8.5 C

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07-21-2013, 10:22 PM
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Man, I am very excited about Desrosiers.

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07-21-2013, 11:01 PM
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He'd have to be the best prospect in the world by far to get an 8.5C from Mike.

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07-21-2013, 11:03 PM
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Isn't he going to be a full time NHL player before any rating gets set for him?

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07-21-2013, 11:13 PM
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Mike Farkas
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Originally Posted by hairylikebear View Post
He'd have to be the best prospect in the world by far to get an 8.5C from Mike.
I have to say, I wasn't a fan of the pick when it was first made. Honestly, my notes (in the year+ leading up to the draft) on Nichu weren't always the most flattering, but they were respectful of his skill level. I really did a lot of film work on Nichu (did you guys come up with a nickname for him yet? That's something I haven't found out about yet...) and I really came away with a different feeling actually.

I haven't submitted it yet, but this is my scouting report on him.

Quote:
Valeri Nichushkin (Dal #10) (RW/LW) - He's a bull. A massive frame, with really good skating and speed, plus a boatload of skill and a great shot. Nichushkin is just tough to stop 1-on-1. Heck, he's tough to stop 1-on-2 in his own age group. He's got a powerful skating stride and with a little more strength and conditioning we'll probably see even more noteworthy breakaway speed from him. One thing that really sticks out that shows his understanding of how to be an offensive threat is his ability to change the tempo and shift a gear when he has the puck. He knows when to push it and he knows when to downshift and really mess with a defenseman's gap and then burn him with strength, speed and skill. He lulls you in and you can't stop him. It's his understanding of the geometry of everything that is most impressive about his game. He knows where to put the puck where you can't reach it, he knows when to lean on you and when not to, he knows when to speed up and when to take it down. It's a great quality that you see in other super-skilled players like Alexander Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin. He's not just going to go at you with skill directly, it's all calculated.

When he can't penetrate the bountiful areas of the offensive zone, he has a laser shot with a terrific release that makes him a scoring threat from distance too. Without the puck, he realizes that in order for him to make another headlong rush down the ice with it that he needs to get it back and he does so. His defensive play is straight to the point, it's not complicated but there's some guesswork involved. He's skilled, he knows what a skilled player is thinking and he reacts on that. He makes a read and attacks it and if it doesn't work out, he isn't going to hound you like Ryan Callahan, he's going to lie in the weeds and wait for his next opportunity. In that sense, he's going to chase the puck a little bit, he's going to lose his guy sometimes, but it's for a good cause in his mind. Sometimes he'll win, sometimes he'll lose. When he's keyed in and really working, he'll win more often than not. His defensive play is a little bit like Alexander Semin's, which carries an unjustly negative connotation but it's not a bad thing...at least he's participating.

He's not always going to be cooking at 100% though, he can turn it on and off, but many skill players are like that. He needs to continue to improve his strength like all young players so that he can power through checks like he does against his own age group. He could improve his balance after contact a little bit in that regard as well, sometimes he loses his edge in situations where a power forward should not. His playmaking ability is a bit of question mark still. He reads the game quite well, so he has vision, but on some of his rushes he doesn't even bother look to see if anyone is open or even on the rink with him. He just turns on his "power forward" switch and bullies his way to the front of the net and finishes the play or makes a mess of the opposing defensemen and even goaltender. He could improve his passing game because he's not going to be able to make that cut at the bottom of the circle and get to the net in the NHL every time, the pros learn fast.

Likely potential: First line winger, like Evgeni Malkin if he lacked potent playmaking ability.

High ceiling: Perennial all-star
As referenced, I'm conservative with my grades...also referenced in the quoted was the grade I submitted for him.

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07-21-2013, 11:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Farkas View Post
I have to say, I wasn't a fan of the pick when it was first made. Honestly, my notes (in the year+ leading up to the draft) on Nichu weren't always the most flattering, but they were respectful of his skill level. I really did a lot of film work on [bold]Nichu (did you guys come up with a nickname for him yet? That's something I haven't found out about yet...)[/bold] and I really came away with a different feeling actually.

I haven't submitted it yet, but this is my scouting report on him.



As referenced, I'm conservative with my grades...also referenced in the quoted was the grade I submitted for him.

Inb4 2 pages of nickname debate

(Personally, I like Drago.)

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07-21-2013, 11:37 PM
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The Russian Factor is a nice nickname, given that it fits within the fear many teams have of the KHL and Russian players. That phrase was also mentioned in every article describing his fall to ten.

I've been a huge fan of Russian players since I started watching hockey. I want him to succeed in part to spite the people who have dogged on every Russian player.

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07-22-2013, 12:18 AM
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hairylikebear
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There's probably a better comparison out there than Malkin minus his best attribute and out of his natural position.

Rick Nash comes to mind.

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07-22-2013, 12:44 AM
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Since you said his likely outcome is a first liner (8) with his his ceiling being a perennial all-star (9) I'm guessing you'll go somewhere in the middle with an 8.5C or so.

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07-22-2013, 04:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Troy McClure View Post
I've been a huge fan of Russian players since I started watching hockey.
Me too. The Russian style (especially scoring wingers) is incredibly fun to watch. I hope he pans out because I hope we've got another fun player to watch who can hopefully help us take that next step.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Farkas View Post
I haven't submitted it yet, but this is my scouting report on him.
Thanks for that. The extra info is much appreciated.

I have a question for you coupled with a bit of friendly criticism. Do we/you know exactly to what extent Nill was involved in making individual picks? Which brings me to:

Quote:
Niklas Hansson:

It was not too long before Jim Nill went back to the Swedish roots that helped make the Red Wings such a prominent team over the past two decades.
If the answer to my above question is that he was quite involved that's one thing. But this pick is as "Dallas" as it gets going by recent drafting trends. In the five drafts prior to 2013 the Stars drafted six defensemen playing either in Sweden or Finland.

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07-22-2013, 04:45 AM
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Has "Shoosh" already been rejected?

Nice write up, but eventually some out-of-state media is going to editorialize about Texas without referencing ranching. Not THIS decade, mind you, but eventually, and what a glorious day it'll be ...

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07-22-2013, 04:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Mike Farkas View Post
I have to say, I wasn't a fan of the pick when it was first made. Honestly, my notes (in the year+ leading up to the draft) on Nichu weren't always the most flattering, but they were respectful of his skill level. I really did a lot of film work on Nichu (did you guys come up with a nickname for him yet? That's something I haven't found out about yet...) and I really came away with a different feeling actually.

I haven't submitted it yet, but this is my scouting report on him.



As referenced, I'm conservative with my grades...also referenced in the quoted was the grade I submitted for him.
So you've seen enough to give his shot high grades? There seemed to be question marks over it by some people, and watching his highlights, I don't think any of his goals were quality wristers or slapshots, they were all solo all the way to the net tap ins.

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07-22-2013, 07:23 AM
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Shoosh
or
Shelby
(Chelyabinsk is his home town, is pronounced with a 'sh' sound)

Nice write up Mike, thanks for the info.

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07-22-2013, 07:44 AM
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Mike Farkas
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Originally Posted by hairylikebear View Post
There's probably a better comparison out there than Malkin minus his best attribute and out of his natural position.

Rick Nash comes to mind.
There's probably a better comparable, maybe even Semin, but he doesn't have Semin's shot. And even he's an underrated playmaker and player in general. But it goes beyond the playmaking and the shooting and the position and that for me...he calculates the game in a different manner than Rick Nash. He's just wired differently to me. You're right though, Geno isn't the best guy, but they think the game in a similar way.

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Originally Posted by glovesave_35 View Post
If the answer to my above question is that he was quite involved that's one thing. But this pick is as "Dallas" as it gets going by recent drafting trends. In the five drafts prior to 2013 the Stars drafted six defensemen playing either in Sweden or Finland.
Yeah, that was just me playing the new GM angle. He was so involved in Detroit's drafting process, I find it hard to believe that he wasn't deeply involved in Dallas' here already. But yeah, that's a "Dallas" pick as much as it is a Nill pick. Tomato, potato? Or something...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ck26 View Post
Has "Shoosh" already been rejected?

Nice write up, but eventually some out-of-state media is going to editorialize about Texas without referencing ranching. Not THIS decade, mind you, but eventually, and what a glorious day it'll be ...
Re: Shoosh: I hope so. Re: My hamhanded, trite opening: I'm sorry. If I can deflect the criticism towards Tyler Seguin's twitter, I will. If I cannot, I take full responsibility.

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Originally Posted by Dundalis View Post
So you've seen enough to give his shot high grades? There seemed to be question marks over it by some people, and watching his highlights, I don't think any of his goals were quality wristers or slapshots, they were all solo all the way to the net tap ins.
I like his shot, and while he scores a lot by being a bull and driving to the net (he goes through would-be checkers in his own age group like poop through a goose #razor), I've seen him score a few from distance and it was nice. Like I said, it's no Semin shot (no one in the NHL has Semin's shot either, so newsflash there, huh?) but it's good now and it's going to be better.

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07-22-2013, 09:12 AM
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Yeah, that was just me playing the new GM angle. He was so involved in Detroit's drafting process, I find it hard to believe that he wasn't deeply involved in Dallas' here already. But yeah, that's a "Dallas" pick as much as it is a Nill pick. Tomato, potato? Or something...
I'm stoked about our new GM but this situations seems rife with possible revisionist history (in the future). The drafting situation under Les Jackson in recent years has been damn solid, which was part of the reason Nill came here in the first place. I respect the Red Wings and how they do things but it's going to be really annoying if every little thing that goes well in Dallas from now on is attributed to Detroit somehow.

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07-22-2013, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by glovesave_35 View Post
I'm stoked about our new GM but this situations seems rife with possible revisionist history (in the future). The drafting situation under Les Jackson in recent years has been damn solid, which was part of the reason Nill came here in the first place. I respect the Red Wings and how they do things but it's going to be really annoying if every little thing that goes well in Dallas from now on is attributed to Detroit somehow.
Prepare to be annoyed. If you want outside fans to know even the most basic thing about the Stars, our GM's history with the Red Wings is going to be the best we can hope for and the best way for most journalism to clue in people to the new situation. People who follow the Stars closely have to put up with this stuff, and here on HF until recently we lived with Nieuwendyk is bad at trades, the Goligoski deal was a disaster, there is no owner, and Bob Gainey is our GM just in the time I have been posting here.

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07-22-2013, 11:45 AM
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"The Traktor"

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07-22-2013, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Mike Farkas View Post
I have to say, I wasn't a fan of the pick when it was first made. Honestly, my notes (in the year+ leading up to the draft) on Nichu weren't always the most flattering, but they were respectful of his skill level. I really did a lot of film work on Nichu (did you guys come up with a nickname for him yet? That's something I haven't found out about yet...) and I really came away with a different feeling actually.

I haven't submitted it yet, but this is my scouting report on him.



As referenced, I'm conservative with my grades...also referenced in the quoted was the grade I submitted for him.
Congrats on a great, comprehensive analysis. Even in the KHL, against grown men who, in many cases, had plenty of NHL experience, Nichushkin stood out as a unique and rare talent for two of the reasons you cited: (1) He's a bull who will overpower people, and loves to seek out the physical contact, and (2) as an exceptionally gifted offensive performer whose burst beats you to the outside, and whose incredible balance and strength on his skates enables him to get leverage on defensemen, who either have to concede the corner or haul him down. He's always been a phenom at every level that he's played, and it shouldn't be any surprise if that's the tag hung on him at the end of this season.

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07-22-2013, 01:20 PM
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This is probably a stretch, but how about "Oso"? You have the Russian symbol of strength and its Spanish to accommodate the Stars "Team of the Southwest" mantra...

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07-22-2013, 01:34 PM
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has "shoosh" already been rejected?

Nice write up, but eventually some out-of-state media is going to editorialize about texas without referencing ranching. Not this decade, mind you, but eventually, and what a glorious day it'll be ...
Choosh! Not "Shoosh". His name is pronounced with a 'ch'.

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