Hey guys I was just wondering if anyone got to watch this kid play? I know we all love Team Canada but I went to the World Jr Thread and everyone was talking about Leblanc, which is totally fine but I just wanted to know if anyone heard of saw how he played he ended up with 3 goals in 5 games which seems to be pretty good? Did he have noone to play with or was Finland a low scoring team? Anyway if it's not worth talking about carry on but maybe this kid will pan out someday maybe he wont? 6 2 is a good size considering all the midgets we have. GO CANADA GO!!
I saw him play live vs. Germany and on tv against the Russians and Americans. I was quite impressed. He's a big body with some offensive instincts. He appears to me to be closer to NHL-ready than a lot of players you see at this tournament.
He still has a ways to go in terms of consistency, but I was pretty happy with what I saw. Certainly more impressive than the Leafs' 3rd round pick from Norway : )
I found him to be dreadfully slow and in need of work on his shot. He does have a good head for the game and plays a good defensive and physical game. Battles hard on the boards but not much offensive skills there. Definitely not a top-6 forward in the making.
I found him to be dreadfully slow and in need of work on his hot. He does have a good head for the game and plays a good defensive and physical game. Battles hard on the boards but not much offensive skills there. Definitely not a top-6 forward in the making.
Sounds almost like the Finnish version of Travis Moen. Change your scouting report before Jacques Martin adopts him as his next lovechild.
He's actually spent most of the tournament centering two of Finland's best offensive players, Joel Armia and Teemu Pulkkinen. Considering offense isn't supposed to be his game, he kept up pretty well with his 3 goals. But as a whole Finland's offense was disappointing. They really missed Mikael Granlund, whose presence surely would have bumped Nattinen down a line.
From what I saw he played well defensively (his strong suit), was good on faceoffs (he led the tourney in FO% last year, not sure where he's at this year), and layed a few big hits here and there. On the downside I would agree with Fozz - he's not fast and I don't see him ever putting up major points at higher levels. But he could turn into a competent 3rd line/PK guy some day.
Also of note he got smashed in the face by a Russian player's stick last night (incidental contact) and had to leave to get some work done. He came back for OT though.
Don't see him as a top 6 as well. What great about his skating is that he improved it. Though it is still very slow and especially his first steps are absolutely terrible. But he improved it...will see if he still can do it. What I found positive about him this year is his mean streak he seems to have. Also seems to have gotten bigger though we need to verify if those new "pounds" are not going to be detrimental to his skating. But I overall liked him but he'll need to improve his skating. And need to improve how fast he's making decisions out there. But it was nice to see him throw his body around.
Nattinen was getting treatment when the Russians scored two to tie it.
No coincidence, the guy is very strong defensively. He's also got decent hands and is a smart player. Plays a big man's game.
Could be untapped potential there offensively?
Very minimal untapped offensive potential from what I seen. The only goals he will score is by standing in front of the net (which, coincidentally, are the type of goals he scored in this tournament). He played with 2 scoring threats and didn't look 100% comfortable there from the games I saw.
3rd line shutdown center in NHL is what I optimistically hope for from him.
It's going to be interesting to see what happens to him this summer.