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

Best defenseman in the WJC

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Old
01-02-2011, 12:09 PM
  #101
Jabba11
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Best defenceman: Orlov or Gudbranson. Gudbranson has been playing extremely well for Canada..both ends of the ice.

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01-02-2011, 12:18 PM
  #102
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Originally Posted by Minister of Offence View Post
He's been Canada's best guy in the defensive zone, clearly. His prospect as an NHLer is probably even better at the NHL level because his skating will continue to evolve but he's got that size and wing span. You don't see too man 6'6 235 pounders at 19 move like he can. He's not the one being victimized by speed.
Hes also playing against boys and not men either for speed. Like I said unless he improves his lateral movement big time hell get torn apart by top players in the NHL.

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01-02-2011, 12:21 PM
  #103
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Originally Posted by Patrick - Flames Fan View Post
Hes also playing against boys and not men either for speed. Like I said unless he improves his lateral movement big time hell get torn apart by top players in the NHL.
Structure makes this guy better, something the NHL is at the top of...and it showed in the pre-season. He's 19, he isn't expected to match up with top NHLers at 20, if he ever does. His mobility has come a long way in one year, and it will continue to steadily improve as he shakes off the awkwardness of being that big that early.

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01-02-2011, 12:24 PM
  #104
Blind Gardien
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It's hard for those of us who don't see ALL the games to really have a solid opinion. For Canada, I'd give Ellis the nod... Cowen has been best defensively, and as others have said, Gudbranson has been good too. For Sweden, Erixon is the one who has caught my attention most. I have to say that Larsson, as much as he might be the best prospect, hasn't been very noticeable. On Russia, I can see why Orlov gets attention on the PP, but his complete game seems to have a lot of holes? I only watched the first Finland game, I thought Vatanen was outstanding. You could convince me he's best.

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01-02-2011, 12:29 PM
  #105
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I would think the highest scoring defenceman in world junior history deserves this honor, at least until somebody else steps up in the knockout round to make some big plays for his team. Looking good in a whitewash of Norway or Slovakia doesn't earn you much in my books, these guys need to perform against the top teams with elimination on the line to separate the wheat from the chaff. Ryan Ellis has only ever lost 2 elimination games in his junior career. The gold medal game against the USA last season, and in the OHL playoffs to Steve Stamkos and the Sarnia Sting his rookie year of the OHL playoffs. That's pretty impressive when you figure he's played in 9 OHL playoff series, 2 memorial cups and now 4 international tournaments in that time.


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01-02-2011, 12:31 PM
  #106
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Originally Posted by jughead42 View Post
I would think the highest scoring defenceman in world junior history deserves this honor, at least until somebody else steps up in the knockout round to make some big plays for his team. Looking good in a whitewash of Norway or Slovakia doesn't earn you much in my books, these guys need to perform against the top teams with elimination on the line to separate the wheat from the chaff.
This is true, but it's the offensive guys that shine the most against the bottom feaders...the defensive guys are invisible in those games.

Marc Staal won top defensemen without scoring a point in 07.

So far, Tim Erixon's probably my guy. I've inadvertently followed him all year because of Rundblad and he's taking quality minutes and having a great season.

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01-02-2011, 12:34 PM
  #107
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Vatanen, Erixon, Merill, Gunbradson are my top 4 as of now.

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Old
01-02-2011, 12:44 PM
  #108
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Faulk has looked strong the PP for the US.

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Old
01-02-2011, 12:52 PM
  #109
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For Finland Jokipakka has been our best defencemen.

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01-02-2011, 01:40 PM
  #110
Sidney the Kidney
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Homer pick (since he plays junior for my hometown team), but Gudbranson's looked really good for Canada so far. He's been physical, has been positionally sound in his own end, and is even contributing a surprising number of points offensively (3 goals, 5 points for a "shutdown defenseman").

One flaw I've noticed, and maybe it's on instruction from the coaching staff, is he's backing up a bit too much. It was especially noticeable against the fast Swedish forwards. I'd have liked him to close the gap a little and not give them until the top of the faceoff circle to take shots (ie. that weak goal Roy let in to tie the 5-5 game).

But overall, he's been, arguably, Canada's most dependable blueliner in the defensive zone, IMO.

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Old
01-02-2011, 01:43 PM
  #111
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Justin Faulk.

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Old
01-02-2011, 01:46 PM
  #112
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sidney the Kidney View Post
Homer pick (since he plays junior for my hometown team), but Gudbranson's looked really good for Canada so far. He's been physical, has been positionally sound in his own end, and is even contributing a surprising number of points offensively (3 goals, 5 points for a "shutdown defenseman").

One flaw I've noticed, and maybe it's on instruction from the coaching staff, is he's backing up a bit too much. It was especially noticeable against the fast Swedish forwards. I'd have liked him to close the gap a little and not give them until the top of the faceoff circle to take shots (ie. that weak goal Roy let in to tie the 5-5 game).

But overall, he's been, arguably, Canada's most dependable blueliner in the defensive zone, IMO.
As an 18 year old he's been real impressive. Fitting the 3rd overall billing, I think. By next year he'll be too good for this tournament IMO.

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Old
01-02-2011, 10:21 PM
  #113
Ether Prodigy
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This is easy, they all really suck but Gudbranson sucks the least.

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Old
01-02-2011, 10:26 PM
  #114
Jussi
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Not Sami Vatanen.

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Old
01-02-2011, 10:27 PM
  #115
Juxtaposer
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Imma throw some love to Jon Merrill. He's been great.

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Old
01-02-2011, 10:30 PM
  #116
King Forsberg
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Merrill has been a beast

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