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News & Notes 2010-2011 III

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Old
05-17-2011, 01:44 PM
  #51
Millhaus
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We will never know for certain if his development wasnt stunted being stuck behind AHL superstar Alex Giroux all those years, now will we.
All those years...?

The guy played a year and a half in Hershey before being dealt away.

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05-18-2011, 12:56 AM
  #52
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All those years...?

The guy played a year and a half in Hershey before being dealt away.

I say yes his developement was stunted by playing behind Alex Giroux.

It would seem like a very long time for a young guy far from home and not getting quality chances. I wonder too if Oskar was short changed. Hershey definitely was playing the older guys in the prime positions. Few opportunities for the newbies.
Not ideal for developement that first year.

I'm curious whether Oskar has that Finnish sisu. We could use some of that.

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05-18-2011, 01:03 AM
  #53
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Ha!

dchesnokov | Dmitry Chesnokov | #Canes' Oskar Osala signed with #KHL's Neftekhimik. The official announcement will be made after the AHL season ends.
Is that real? His twitter 11 hours ago calls it a rumour. http://twitter.com/#!/OskarOsala

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05-18-2011, 08:27 AM
  #54
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I say yes his developement was stunted by playing behind Alex Giroux.

It would seem like a very long time for a young guy far from home and not getting quality chances. I wonder too if Oskar was short changed. Hershey definitely was playing the older guys in the prime positions. Few opportunities for the newbies.
Not ideal for developement that first year.

I'm curious whether Oskar has that Finnish sisu. We could use some of that.
I don't know how much ice time he was getting in Hershey. If I remember correctly he had a great first half of his first season in Hershey and then fell off considerably. Why? How much ice time was he getting when he was going well and how much after? I don't know.

For that matter if we are talking about a guy far from home needing to be simply given prime ice time to feel comfortable how much ice time was he seeing in his 2 seasons of juniors in Mississauga?

I'd argue that the one season he decided to go home to Finland between Mississauga and Hershey had more to do with him not developing quicker than Giroux's presence on the Bears.

After being drafted the guy played 1 more year of juniors in the OHL, went home for 1 year, played a year and a half in Hershey, another year and a half with the Canes' AHL affiliates, and now is heading back to Europe and you guys have pinpointed Giroux as the reason he didn't make the NHL?

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05-18-2011, 09:05 AM
  #55
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All those years...?

The guy played a year and a half in Hershey before being dealt away.
Did that season and a half span 3 calendar years, by chance? You note I didnt say season. Regardless, your post adds nothing of substance unless you are really trying to say that he was developed properly. That in only 125 games of being behind Girioux and others, it couldnt hurt his game?

All those years seasons games, all those PP's. What's the difference - the words I choose won't change what is important to George. I just question why we largely hord picks and prospects but then screw them when it comes time to develop them. Like Alzner, buried behind SMo for two years, Alzner should have 30+ playoff games under his belt by now. NHL playoff games. He was a greenhorn with just one game under his belt to start these loffs

When prospects fail or picks fail, it seems some would rather just argue meaningless points or turn a blind eye instead of discussing prospect development.

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05-18-2011, 09:19 AM
  #56
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I am saying that when a player makes the step up from juniors to the pros or Europe to North America or whatever that that first season at a different level is about acclimating to the new level of competition and that IMO they only should get prime ice time if they prove they deserve it. They shouldn't just be given it simply because they are a prospect.

I'm not saying they should get 4th line ice either but as long as they get regular decent ice time that is perfectly fine. If after that year they are doing well then yes a decent prospect should be given the opportunity to play a more important role on the team.

So then this gets back for me to how Osala was doing with the ice time he was given? Why did he drop off so much after the first half of his first season in Hershey? I don't know the answer but that didn't indicate to me that he was deserving of that bigger role.

And I am far from convinced that Alzner would be as good as he is now if he had been rushed to the NHL sooner.

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05-18-2011, 09:47 AM
  #57
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Hanlon fired.

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05-18-2011, 11:17 AM
  #58
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Zach Miskovic signed to a one-year deal per Capgeek. Good thing they got the 14th or 15th defenseman on the organizational depth chart locked up. Whew.

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05-18-2011, 11:38 AM
  #59
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@millhaus. I am almost fully convinced that Alzner would have had a stronger playoffs this year had he been in our lineup full time instead of SMo in his last one or two years here. As long as we didnt change his position, or change what he does best (we did both in almost all his callups during his Hershey years).

Our recent youth movement should be proof positive that the overcautious nature of the traditionally accepted nurturing defensemen in the AHL is outdated. Guys dont need to develop physically, the game is played softer than ever. Marcus held up all year just fine. Sarge physically matured in the NHL. Carlson did fine in his callup March 2010 and think its then obvious he could have been in our lineup before that.

I feel that the speed of the AHL doesnt prepare young players for the speed of the NHL. It buys them time to mature mentally and physically, or acclimate to the rink sizes. Hershey didnt teach Alzner how to play defense. He knew that before he got there.

9GP -4 worst on the team. Lets not sugar coat it. he was a greenhorn more so than even Carlson. This is the guy that got extra AHL time?

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05-18-2011, 11:44 AM
  #60
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Thanks RH for saving me the trouble of typing that out.

As of June 2009, Alzner had learned everything the AHL had to give him. From then on, he should have been learning his craft playing against tougher competition as well as learning his teammates.

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05-18-2011, 12:04 PM
  #61
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So how far back did those extra 56 AHL regular season and 20 playoff games as opposed to say 56 NHL regular season and 6 playoff games set Alzner back?

And since after June '09 Alzner had only played 48 AHL regular season and 10 playoff games is that roughly the rule of thumb for how long a guy should play in the minors? Basically half a season in the AHL is all a player should need?

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05-18-2011, 12:21 PM
  #62
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There is no rule of thumb. What do you think Alzner learned after half a season of excellent play and a meaningful role in winning a championship that has you convinced that he's a better player for it?

Was it the inferior competition? The goons? The bus rides? Learning that his employer would nakedly manipulate his career to get his elc to slide?


Last edited by BrooklynCapsFan: 05-18-2011 at 12:28 PM.
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05-18-2011, 01:04 PM
  #63
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Thanks RH for saving me the trouble of typing that out.

As of June 2009, Alzner had learned everything the AHL had to give him. From then on, he should have been learning his craft playing against tougher competition as well as learning his teammates.
Agreed.

The only benefit to Alzner's game from playing in the AHL was that he and Carlson gained chemistry at that level. I'm sure that wasn't the deciding factor in keeping KA there.. and the morons probably didn't plan it that way. And its not like those kids couldn't have gained chemistry in the NHL... but the moron behind the bench may have never put them together long enough to get chemistry at this level without the AHL blueprint in front of him.

So yeah... keeping KA in the AHL was probably beneficial cause we have an idiot running the lines.

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05-18-2011, 01:06 PM
  #64
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I know its totally random, but I was pissed when I heard Alzner got concussed in the AHL playoffs. I thought he should have been in the NHL then instead. What a disaster that year turned out for him - 2008/9. Got in a solid 30 NHL games, then was dispatched to the AHL concussed and then stuck in the AHL for another year. i do not think that year helped his development, him physically, nor his confidence. The next NHL stint he got, tried exclusively at RD stepping up taking risks Erskine his mentor - failed and was replaced by Carlson.

He could have had an additional 110 NHL RS games and another 21 playoff games on his resume if George didnt think Mo was the way to go. If my calcs are correct. NHL playoff speed cannot be learned anywhere else but in the NHL.

Assuming a players career is finite no matter where they play, we lost out on a year or two of NHL years from Alzner. Unless someone thinks that the AHL is a fountain of youth.

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05-18-2011, 01:25 PM
  #65
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Originally Posted by BrooklynCapsFan View Post
There is no rule of thumb. What do you think Alzner learned after half a season of excellent play and a meaningful role in winning a championship that has you convinced that he's a better player for it?

Was it the inferior competition? The goons? The bus rides? Learning that his employer would nakedly manipulate his career to get his elc to slide?
I think without a doubt he was physically stronger this year than he was the previous season and stronger last year than he was the season before that.

He struggled mightily his rookie pro season in his NHL call ups with the size of most NHL players. He struggled less but still had issues with the size of NHL players last year. This year he handled things better, but still needs to get stronger IMO.

IMO for many guys coming out of juniors, whether to the NHL or AHL, the biggest hurdle isn't the skill level required to play at that higher level but simply playing against men as opposed to boys. I agree Alzner's skill level was NHL ready, though maybe after a shorter apprenticeship in the AHL, but he was nowhere near ready physically for the NHL.

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05-18-2011, 01:47 PM
  #66
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The thing is, the AHL is loaded with men. Just like the NHL. Its an odd tale that may not even be true, but Alzner told me 2 or 3 years ago now, that he was trying to lose weight. I think George and his fascination with puck moving mobile defensemen got to him. IIRC that was 10 months before he got concussed. I remember telling myself, hearing about getting his noggin knocked, why didn't he bulk up!!

The first NHL year Alzner got, in his 30 games, his lack of strength was not a glaring issue IMO. Sure he got outmuscled on the boards at times but he was far from alone. Semin Green Pothier Flash Sarge to name a few.

The regular season was the perfect place for him to work on that. The NHL. So as he is getting stronger and better at playing bigger forwards, he was also exposed to the NHL speed. And buidling chemistry with Ovi and the LW's, our dmen, etc. The regular season is a fine time to groom young players on a winner, you can afford the mistakes of a greenhorn when the team is dominating in the standings. If they are outmatched hurting the team, upgrade at the deadline.

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05-18-2011, 01:58 PM
  #67
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Alzner needed NHL timing and defense vs high end skill in open ice to be able to maintain the gap control that his skating abilities allowed. To me that was more important than any bit of strength issues along the boards and in front of the net that may have cost him confidence.

edit: and those battles lost would have been hard data points for KA to use as reference when considering his off-ice training... and perhaps "losing weight" to be like Green wouldn't have been one of them.

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05-18-2011, 02:38 PM
  #68
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I'd like Whyno if he would just post Caps tweets instead of talking about himself or referencing himself in hashtags constantly.

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05-18-2011, 02:45 PM
  #69
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The thing is, the AHL is loaded with men. Just like the NHL. Its an odd tale that may not even be true, but Alzner told me 2 or 3 years ago now, that he was trying to lose weight. I think George and his fascination with puck moving mobile defensemen got to him. IIRC that was 10 months before he got concussed. I remember telling myself, hearing about getting his noggin knocked, why didn't he bulk up!!

The first NHL year Alzner got, in his 30 games, his lack of strength was not a glaring issue IMO. Sure he got outmuscled on the boards at times but he was far from alone. Semin Green Pothier Flash Sarge to name a few.

The regular season was the perfect place for him to work on that. The NHL. So as he is getting stronger and better at playing bigger forwards, he was also exposed to the NHL speed. And buidling chemistry with Ovi and the LW's, our dmen, etc. The regular season is a fine time to groom young players on a winner, you can afford the mistakes of a greenhorn when the team is dominating in the standings. If they are outmatched hurting the team, upgrade at the deadline.
It is possible to both lose weight and gain strength.

Alzner was not anywhere close to physically ready for the NHL his first year out of juniors. The idea that the best thing for him and the Caps during that year was for him to struggle playing against bigger, stronger, and better NHL players is crazy IMO but whatever.

You guys seem to be of the opinion that if a guy has NHL level skill there is no reason for him to play a second of minor league hockey. I couldn't disagree more as coming from juniors the skill and speed adjustment is only half the battle.

Most agree that even though the skill is there the best thing for Nugent-Hopkins is for him to play another year of juniors so he can physically mature some more. Apparently they are all fools...

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05-18-2011, 02:49 PM
  #70
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Its the 2nd year in Hershey, not necessarily the first, that's the issue IMHO (ie 2009-2010). The did it right with Carlson IMHO. I had a major issue, mostly highlighted in my Kubina rant, about Alzner in AHL vs DC cause GMGM couldn't let SMo go without "Winning" that trade even if it made the team better by making Alzner's firstfull season year 2009-2010.

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05-18-2011, 02:58 PM
  #71
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Its the 2nd year in Hershey, not necessarily the first, that's the issue IMHO (ie 2009-2010)
He still wasn't physically ready IMO. Did he look stronger than the previous season? Sure but not as strong as he looked this season.

Alzner's only problem since day 1 in the pros has been and continues to be physical strength.

And the Caps didn't approach last season with the 'how do we get Alzner as much NHL experience as possible' plan it was how can we be as good as we can be now plan and in the regular season at least they were fantastic. And it wasn't like Alzner didn't get a decent amount of NHL games anyway to show again that he needed to get stronger.

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05-18-2011, 03:15 PM
  #72
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Alzner can't lift weights in an Nhl facility?

If you're insinuating that we were protecting him by keeping him in the A, we weren't. It's a rougher league and he picked up his first concussion there.

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05-18-2011, 03:15 PM
  #73
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Alzner being delayed was about juggling young RFA contracts down the road...nothing more....IMO. They also had legit NHL'ers under contract they had to clear.

I think we all agree that Alzner here a year earlier would have been optimal.

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05-18-2011, 03:15 PM
  #74
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05-18-2011, 03:28 PM
  #75
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He still wasn't physically ready IMO. Did he look stronger than the previous season? Sure but not as strong as he looked this season.

Alzner's only problem since day 1 in the pros has been and continues to be physical strength.

And the Caps didn't approach last season with the 'how do we get Alzner as much NHL experience as possible' plan it was how can we be as good as we can be now plan and in the regular season at least they were fantastic. And it wasn't like Alzner didn't get a decent amount of NHL games anyway to show again that he needed to get stronger.
Understand the linear thinking mindset they have. The inability or unwillingness to expand the mind to make the entire team better is my issue.... and why the KA part was a subset.

I don't agree that his only problem was strength. But it was his major problem. The 2009-2010 season he had gap control issues as well. They just don't show up often in his case cause you can't show a play that he could "potentially make" if in better position very easily. This year he has made some fantastic high speed defensive plays in the neutral zone and at our blue line. That was a step change based on his comfort level. That comfort level and those play IMHO he could have made LAST year by playoffs... and he would have been further ahead by this year.

Now would last years' regular season accomplishments been compromised by having him up??? Maybe. Probably true in a vaccuum. But if the moron would have taken the Defensive depth hit (Mo and Pots out) and paid more than Atlanta (which wasn't much), and pulled the trigger on the CLB deal (Clark/Juice for Chim) when they talked in the offseason... Kubina would have been a cap... and Alzner would have had a full 2009-2010 season. Oh, and maybe you don't trade Sami Lepisto for a 5th.

Vet/Cup winning leadership on D.... sorely needed forever. Rookie gaining regular season experience. Trade deadline to address issues.

But no... we have linear thinking, win the battle/F the war mentality by this GM.

Dammit I didn't want to be so involved this offseason.

Feel free to read about my rant on this subject in the threads in June-July 2009.

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