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Finnish prospects: strengths and weaknesses

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Old
01-05-2010, 03:25 PM
  #1
FINNtastic
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Finnish prospects: strengths and weaknesses

I thought it might be a good idea to start a thread where we can evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of prospects and also try to give realistic projection of their futures.

I'll start with...

Sami Vatanen
Defenseman
Shoots: Right
5'10'' 165lbs
3 JUN 1991
JYP Jyväskylä
Stats 09-10: 29gp, 4+13=17 points

+ Excellent skater, has great speed and technique
+ Confidence with puck, isn't afraid to shoot the puck
+ Leads by an example
+ Quite hard shot

- Small, needs a lot more strength
- Shot accuracy, shoots a lot but too many times he misses the net
- Positioning

Future:
At best: TOP-4 d-man in NHL, PP quarterback of his team. 30-40 points per season.
At least: A good offensive d-man in Europe.

In the right role under good coaching Vatanen has a fair chance of reaching his potential. He also needs some luck so that he doesn't end up in a similar situation as did Nummelin.

HF rating: 8,0 C

Joonas Nättinen
Center
Shoots: Right
6'2'' 183lbs
3 JAN 1991
Blues Espoo
Stats 09-10: 18gp, 0+3=3 (Blues A Jun. 7gp, 6+3=9)

+ Good size, needs to fill the frame
+ Decent speed for a guy of his size
+ Defensively responsible

- Lacks offensive potential
- Needs to play nastier

Future:
At best: 3rd line center in NHL. 20-30 points per season.
At least: Decent SM-liiga center.

I have my doubts considering Nättinen's offensive potential. There just seems to be some too many holes in his skill set. Or to put it in other words, he just doesn't seem to have any top-end skills. But there's still a chance that when the rest of his body catches up to his height he might become surprisingly good. Now he just seems physically immature.

HF rating: 7,0 D

Give me your views and feel free to add new players...

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Old
01-05-2010, 05:31 PM
  #2
Tormentor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FINNtastic View Post
try to give realistic projection of their futures.
There's rarely any realism in what I write around here, but I gave it a go.

Joonas Donskoi
Right Wing/Left Wing
Shoots: Right
6'0'', 183lbs
13 APR 1992
Kärpät Oulu
Stats 09-10: 9gp 2g+0a=2p (SM-liiga), 10gp 10g+10a=20p (Jr.A)

+ Highly skilled puck handler
+ Offensive instincts
+ Talented goal scorer
+ Agile

- Straight line skating technique
- Physical play
- Short handed play
- Tends to hold the puck too much
- Forechecking

Future:
At best: 2nd line winger in NHL, 40-50 points per season.
At least: 1st/2nd line forward in SM-liiga.

Joonas is by no means an ordinary Finnish prospect; the skill level is just astonishing. There’s still a long way to the top, but the pace of his progress has been promising lately.

HF rating: 7,5 C


Miikka Salomäki

Center/Winger
Shoots: Left
5'10'', 172lbs
09 MAR 93
Kärpät Oulu
Stats 09-10: 27gp 14g+17a=31p (Jr.A)

+ Versatile
+ Determination
+ Competitive
+ Aggressive
+ Hard working
+ Strong with the puck
+ Play making skills
+ Short Handed play
+ Face-offs

- His skating needs some polishing
- Height

Future:

At best: 3rd line forward in NHL, 30 points per season.
At least: 1st/2nd line forward in SM-liiga / high calibre role player in Europe.

I admit my mistake, I have never been more wrong with a prospect as I’ve been with Salomäki. If this kid stays healthy, it’s fairly certain that he will be a future national team player; his work ethic is just out of this world.

HF rating: 7,0 B

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Old
01-06-2010, 06:24 AM
  #3
Gabranth
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Mikael Granlund
Center/Winger
Shoots: Left
5'10'', 172lbs
26 FEB 92
HIFK Helsinki
Stats 09-10: 20gp 5+14=19 points.

+ Good Passer


- Weak shot
- Small Size
- Skating
- Hockey Sense
- Physical play
- Face-offs
- Forechecking
- Hands

Future:
At best: 4th line center/winger in NHL, 20 points per season.
At least: 1st/2nd line forward in SM-liiga.

Future most likely AHL center, but can also play as a winger. Dissapointment at World juniors, did you see that giveaway at USA game ... ?

HF rating: 5,0D

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Old
01-06-2010, 08:57 AM
  #4
Sampe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabranth View Post
Mikael Granlund
...
Good thing Granlund himself doesn't have your attitude. We're talking about a 17-year-old, 172-lbs playmaker who missed nearly a month before the WJC, is quite possibly still carrying an injury, has hardly played on small ice surface at all, played on a line featuring Rajala who was virtually useless plus Hartikainen with whom he has zero chemistry and lead his team in points in the tournament...and you want to forget all he's done up to this point and base his projection on the three poor games he had in the WJC, or worse yet, that one horrible giveaway?

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Old
01-06-2010, 10:34 AM
  #5
ThinMcWhistle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabranth View Post
Mikael Granlund
Center/Winger
Shoots: Left
5'10'', 172lbs
26 FEB 92
HIFK Helsinki
Stats 09-10: 20gp 5+14=19 points.

+ Great playmaker
+ Creative puckhandler
+ Great vision/hockey sense
+ Faceoffs

- Smallish frame
- Physical play

Future:
At best: 1st line NHL center.
At worst: 2-3 line NHL center.

Modeled after: Saku Koivu

HF rating: 8.5C
Fixed.

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Old
01-06-2010, 10:37 AM
  #6
ThinMcWhistle
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Someone do Pulkkinen, I have not seen much of him as I live in Canada, but scouting reports say he is along the same lines as Granlund.

Also would love to see:
Hartikainen
Joonas Rask
Erik Haula

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Old
01-06-2010, 03:11 PM
  #7
Savolainen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabranth View Post
Mikael Granlund
Center/Winger
Shoots: Left
5'10'', 172lbs
26 FEB 92
HIFK Helsinki
Stats 09-10: 20gp 5+14=19 points.

+ Good Passer


- Weak shot
- Small Size
- Skating
- Hockey Sense
- Physical play
- Face-offs
- Forechecking
- Hands

Future:
At best: 4th line center/winger in NHL, 20 points per season.
At least: 1st/2nd line forward in SM-liiga.

Future most likely AHL center, but can also play as a winger. Dissapointment at World juniors, did you see that giveaway at USA game ... ?

HF rating: 5,0D

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Old
01-07-2010, 09:33 PM
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabranth View Post
Mikael Granlund
Center/Winger
Shoots: Left
5'10'', 172lbs
26 FEB 92
HIFK Helsinki
Stats 09-10: 20gp 5+14=19 points.

+ Good Passer


- Weak shot
- Small Size
- Skating
- Hockey Sense
- Physical play
- Face-offs
- Forechecking
- Hands

Future:
At best: 4th line center/winger in NHL, 20 points per season.
At least: 1st/2nd line forward in SM-liiga.

Future most likely AHL center, but can also play as a winger. Dissapointment at World juniors, did you see that giveaway at USA game ... ?

HF rating: 5,0D
The things that you said are his weaknesses are his strenghts.

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Old
01-08-2010, 05:14 AM
  #9
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Teemu Pulkkinen
Winger
Shoots: Right
5'10'', 176lbs
2 JAN 92
Jokerit Helsinki
Stats 09-10: 12gp 1+2= 3 pts

+ Hard and accurate shot
+ Pure sniper, knows where to go on the ice
+ Decent passing abilities and vision


- Too selfish at times
- Defensive responsibilities (getting better at it tho)
- Skating could use some more speed
- Not very big or strong
- Bad luck with injuries

Note: Pulkkinen is bulking up quite slowly but well, he could end up being fast skater and difficult to knock off the puck

Future
At best: Top 6 winger in the NHL, could be a ppg player but more likely 50-60 points
At least: First liner in the AHL/Europe

Smaller and slower Jeff Carter. If he doesnt go in first 2 rounds in the upcoming draft then im very disappointed.


Last edited by 4rde: 01-08-2010 at 05:20 AM.
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Old
01-08-2010, 08:25 AM
  #10
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I'd add very good one-on-one moves (deking ability that is) for both Granlund and Pulkkinen.

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Old
01-08-2010, 10:47 PM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabranth View Post
Mikael Granlund
Center/Winger
Shoots: Left
5'10'', 172lbs
26 FEB 92
HIFK Helsinki
Stats 09-10: 20gp 5+14=19 points.

+ Good Passer


- Weak shot
- Small Size
- Skating
- Hockey Sense
- Physical play
- Face-offs
- Forechecking
- Hands

Future:
At best: 4th line center/winger in NHL, 20 points per season.
At least: 1st/2nd line forward in SM-liiga.

Future most likely AHL center, but can also play as a winger. Dissapointment at World juniors, did you see that giveaway at USA game ... ?

HF rating: 5,0D
this guys a troll hes always saying how bad finland is.

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Old
01-17-2010, 02:56 PM
  #12
FinProspects
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FiNsKa View Post
Fixed.
At worst 2nd-3rd line center in NHL? Thats PRETTY optimistic. At worst Granlund is a elite player in Europe (Sm-liiga, Elitserien, mid-European leagues.. Not in KHL). Ville Peltonen-type of a career would be a good example. At best of course a 1st line winger/center in NHL, but he really needs to work on his skating to concur that spot.

But man..he is only 17. Way too much speculation/criticism over Granlund in these boards and pretty much everywhere. Even I was disappointed after WJC, and thought that will he be ever a star player in NHL. Pretty critical, because he did score 7 points in 6 games. He just needs to mature physically and work on his skating.

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Old
01-18-2010, 11:25 AM
  #13
TheMuumio
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This guy's over 20 but anyway - he has lots of potential.

Joonas Järvinen
Defenseman
Shoots: Left
6'3" , 214 lbs
5 JAN 1989
TPS Turku
Stats: 32 gp 2+2=4 points +/- +14

+Teamplayer
+Good at blocking shots
+Not too many mistakes on the defensive end with the puck
+Positioning
+Calm
+Size
+Can hit hard...

-...but does it too rarely
-Offensive play
-Not aggressive enough? aka the AP Berg problem.

Getting better and better every year - he is currently among the top defensive defensemen on Sm-Liiga and has really good +/- when playing with probably our worst defenseman in defense.

Future:
At best: NHL Third pairing + PK defenseman
At least: Top pairing Defensive defenseman in SM-liiga.

Future: National Team mainstay. Probably a future TPS captain.

HF rating: 7,0


I suck at this but wanted to give a try.


Last edited by TheMuumio: 01-21-2010 at 09:48 AM.
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Old
01-19-2010, 08:37 AM
  #14
Tony Piscotta
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Doesn't seem all that bad of a profile. Appreciate the effort.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMuumio View Post
This guy's over 20 but anyway - he has lots of potential.

Joonas Järvinen
Defenseman
Shoots: Left
6'3" , 214 lbs
5 JAN 1989
TPS Turku
Stats: 32 gp 2+2=4 points +/- +14

+Teamplayer
+Good at blocking shots
+Not too many mistakes on the defensive end with the puck
+Positioning
+Calm
+Size
+Can hit hard...

-...but does it too rarely
-Offensive play
-Not aggressive enough? aka the AP Berg problem.

Getting better and better every year - he is currently among the top defensive defensemen on Sm-Liiga and has really good +/- when playing with probably our worst defenseman in defense.

Future:
At best: NHL Third pairing + PK defenseman
At least: Top pairing Defensive defenseman in SM-liiga.

Future: National Team mainstay. Probably a future TPS captain.

HD rating: 7,0


I suck at this but wanted to give a try.

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Old
01-19-2010, 01:03 PM
  #15
Quethas
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Probably as good start in hfboards member as any... I have watched Joel Armia pretty closely so...

Joel Armia
Winger
6'2", 183 lbs
31 MAY 93
Ässät Pori
Stats 09-10: 19gp 12g+5a=17p (Jr.A)

+ Passing
+ Goalscoring. Knows how to make goals even though shot isn't perfect.
+ Vision
+ Forechecking
+ One-on-ones

- Skating
- Lacks strength
- Defensive play

Future:
At best: 2nd-3rd line winger in NHL
At least: 2nd-3rd line winger in SM-liiga

Joel has surprised many this year. His progress has been astonishing. One year ago no-one would have guessed that he would be in the All-stars team of World Hockey Challenge. He is the kind player who goes directly into the net and can do a lot there.

HF rating: 7,0 C

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Old
01-19-2010, 02:06 PM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quethas View Post
Probably as good start in hfboards member as any... I have watched Joel Armia pretty closely so...
Welcome to the boards. Armia is surely a rare Finnish prospect as he has both size and skill. His puck handling skills are great and sometimes his dekes are effective even if he's not moving at full speed - A fun player to watch.

I agree that skating is one of his weaknesses, seems a bit powerless. Hopefully he will improve in that area once he gets more strength to his lower body; at least his lower body looks fairly skinny at the moment.

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01-19-2010, 05:37 PM
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Finish hockey players are very famous for their good skating but why is the biggest weakness of most of our promising prospects skating??

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01-19-2010, 07:28 PM
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Savolainen View Post
Finish hockey players are very famous for their good skating but why is the biggest weakness of most of our promising prospects skating??
Too much focus and practise on puck skills and not enough on skating?

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Old
01-19-2010, 09:59 PM
  #19
LoveHateLeafs
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Originally Posted by Quethas View Post
Probably as good start in hfboards member as any... I have watched Joel Armia pretty closely so...

Joel Armia

+ Goalscoring. Knows how to make goals even though shot isn't perfect.
What kind of goal scorer is he? Does he set himself up in front on the net and get deflections/rebounds? Wrist shot? Slap shot?

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01-20-2010, 12:37 AM
  #20
Quethas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoveHateLeafs View Post
What kind of goal scorer is he? Does he set himself up in front on the net and get deflections/rebounds? Wrist shot? Slap shot?
His wristshot and slapshot aren't that hard but he seems to be incredibely good in front of the net. Even though there isn't always that much space, he does make a lot of goals from deflections and rebounds.

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Old
01-22-2010, 04:19 PM
  #21
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Nobody but Granlund has gotten below a 7.0

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Old
01-23-2010, 12:10 PM
  #22
LoveHateLeafs
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So would it be fair to describe Armia as Teemu Hartikainen 2.0, but maybe better at the same age?

Also, speaking of big Finns, how would you rate Minnesota draft pick Eero Elo? He didn't jump out at me during the world juniors, but I notice that since joining his SM-Liiga team, he has 4 points in five games despite being given minimal ice time.

Thanks for advance

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01-23-2010, 01:35 PM
  #23
Tormentor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoveHateLeafs View Post
So would it be fair to describe Armia as Teemu Hartikainen 2.0, but maybe better at the same age?
Not the best possible comparison IMO. Armia has a better skill-set, is more intelligent and is a better scorer. Hartikainen on the other hand has more will power and natural toughness, he’s not afraid to leave the comfort zone. Armia could develop into a skilled top line winger, when Hartikainen looks more like hammer and nails kind of guy.

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Old
01-26-2010, 06:52 AM
  #24
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I would compare Armia as Eero Elo 2.0. Quite similar players with their strenghts and weaknesses.

I have been a bit disappointed how Santeri Arousva has developed however. The step to A-juniors has been a lot bigger than I thought. OK, it is of course harder for a player sized like Kimmo Timonen than for a bigger boy.

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Old
01-26-2010, 01:33 PM
  #25
Tormentor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Korkki View Post
I would compare Armia as Eero Elo 2.0. Quite similar players with their strenghts and weaknesses.
They are both tall, lanky, play with their right hand down and have some issues with skating, so there are definitely some similarities. On the other hand Armia has a lot higher skill level. Great puck-handling ability combined with quick hands means that he has a lot more options in one-on-one situations and in traffic. Not to mention that they are a great asset in front of the net.

I’d like to point out that Armia already has 12 goals in 22 games in Jr.A. Elo managed to score 12 goals in 42 games in his draft year. Stats are stats, but the fact is that Armia is far ahead in development. If Armia stays healthy and works hard with his skating during the summer, he will play his first couple of SM-liiga games next season despite the fact that his overall game will still probably be far from perfect. Armia is a fairly similar prospect with Donskoi in this matter.

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