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Sanheim compared to McDonagh; 2014 draft gets an 'A'


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Well this is certainly encouraging.

 

From Meltzer's blog this morning:
http://www.hockeybuzz.com/blog.php?post_id=61196#.U7vTvu9OxuI.twitter

 

While it is impossible to accurately judge the quality of a team's Draft crop until at least three to five years have passed, at least one prominent hockey figure believes the Flyers' 2014 Draft will ultimately go down among its strongest in recent franchise history. TSN analyst Craig Button, a former NHL scouting director for the Dallas Stars and Calgary Flames general manager, told NJ.com that his first impression of the team's 2014 selection crop would be an A grade. Button believed that each of the Flyers first four selections -- first-round pick Travis Sanheim, second-round pick Nicolas Kube-Aubel, third rounder Mark Friedman and fifth-round selection Oskar Lindblom -- have projectable NHL upsides. Button compared Sanheim to current New York Rangers' star defenseman Ryan McDonagh in his 2007 draft year

 

 

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Button compared Sanheim to current New York Rangers' star defenseman Ryan McDonagh in his 2007 draft year. 

 

No insult, but that is old news. All scouts have compared him of that and some even higher. If he ever was to attain that projection of a McD, I would be ecstatic. I love his game and character. But before we all get excited, I think its 4 years in the making before such lofty expectations can be even nearly realized. 

 

Same with Morin, Hagg, Ghost, etc. Lets call it a pipeline. 

 

For me, there are maybe (I am stretching it), 3 guys from the draft that can step into an NHL role without detriment to their development immediately. 

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It was news to me. Plus, there was the bit about rating the Flyers draft as an 'A', which is a sign we're headed in the right direction. External validation isn't necessary, but it's nice to see.

 

And to be clear, I am in no way expecting Sanheim to be in the league for a while. The comparison, to me, is helpful in terms of what his 'game' or his 'style' is. A McDonagh-styled defenseman would be great to have on this team, and if we potentially have one in the pipeline, then great!

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I don't necessarily see the direct comparison to McDonagh. For one thing, TS is quite a bit taller (3 inches already and he probably hasn't stopped growing) and, once he fills out, quite a bit bigger.

 

I also think TS has more offense in his game or, rather, is more offensively-minded than McDonagh. A future PP QB, whereas I don't think McDonagh played much PP at all - until very recently. 

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I hope this assessment is accurate. It would be a step in the right direction. What we have to avoid is dumb trades that block a cohort of youngsters from coming of age together. Part of me thinks one of these folks may have to go as part of a VLC dump.  Salary cap might force our hand.

 

Peace,

 

Howie

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Legit question here:  Did anyone predict Olli Matta breaking the Pens lineup the way he did this year?  If so, I don't remember it.  Not comparing any player the Flyers own, or recently drafted to Matta.  I am saying that predictions are predictions; many are right, many are wrong.  

 

 

If ANY kid shows he can play, he should be given the chance.  And if given that chance, I mean, really given it.  Maata played 78 games as a 19 year old last year.  That's being given a chance. Granted, the player made the most of it, but to the Pens credit(slight barf there), they let him play.  

 

None of this in/out..up/down BS the Flyers are famous for. 

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@DaGreatGazoo

 

after that Maata kid's terrible and by that I mean putrid memorial cup in his "last year" of juniors I certainly didn't expect him to be on the roster opening night.  Especially ahead of Depres who I thought was on the right track to being a top pairing guy due to his solid play in the NHL two years ago...

 

If one of these guys in "the system" makes it impossible to for the big club to send down , so much the better, I reckon that's what Maata did and if one of our prospects steps up in camp  and then has the kind of season he did, it will be "fine " for his development.

 

A thing to think about is how does Olli progress ? does he continue to improve ? or does he level off and become a "bust" reaching only a 3rd pairing level of play ?   where does his game improve "the most' ?   difficult to answer, certainly above my pay grade.

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It was news to me. Plus, there was the bit about rating the Flyers draft as an 'A', which is a sign we're headed in the right direction. External validation isn't necessary, but it's nice to see.

 

No worries- and I did not mean to sound indignant toward you. The TSN.ca announcers immediately proclaimed him to be a McD clone in potential. 

 

The other little tid bit (and this on the Sanheim thread- I forget who posted it) stated that a renowned scout turned analyst had Sanheim ranked at #7. Take that what its worth, but the scout is supposedly renowned for his acute sense of judging talent. The basis for the push (to paraphrase) had to do with everytime the scout / analyst saw sanheim, he had improved. This is a WHL scout where Sanheim played (calgary). So the scout / analyst saw him MANY times and each time he saw him sanheim had improved. 

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The other little tid bit (and this on the Sanheim thread- I forget who posted it) stated that a renowned scout turned analyst had Sanheim ranked at #7. Take that what its worth, but the scout is supposedly renowned for his acute sense of judging talent. The basis for the push (to paraphrase) had to do with everytime the scout / analyst saw sanheim, he had improved. This is a WHL scout where Sanheim played (calgary). So the scout / analyst saw him MANY times and each time he saw him sanheim had improved. 

 

That's good news. We got a player who is trending upward. Button had him as the #8 pick overall on his list, which means that some important people think he's got the goods.

 

If 50% of our defensive picks can pan out (Morin, Hagg, Ghost, Sanheim, Friedman, Pettersson), that's good news for the organization.

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Legit question here:  Did anyone predict Olli Matta breaking the Pens lineup the way he did this year?  If so, I don't remember it.  Not comparing any player the Flyers own, or recently drafted to Matta.  I am saying that predictions are predictions; many are right, many are wrong.  

 

 

If ANY kid shows he can play, he should be given the chance.  And if given that chance, I mean, really given it.  Maata played 78 games as a 19 year old last year.  That's being given a chance. Granted, the player made the most of it, but to the Pens credit(slight barf there), they let him play.  

 

None of this in/out..up/down BS the Flyers are famous for. 

 

 I said Matta was a pretty well finished product, very mature for his age and would not be surprised if he was fast tracked....I just felt he was very sturdy in his own end, a very nice skater and that's how I drew my conclusions.

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Granted, the player made the most of it, but to the Pens credit(slight barf there), they let him play.  

 

The pens had their hand forced. They were decimated with injuries (only behind the Detroit Redwings in man games lost). It bode well with them in Matta's regard (whom the Flyers passed up- chose Laughton). 

 

It is interesting, just to put drafts into perspective, of that draft class (2012), how many are playing in the NHL and having a decent contribution? 

 

http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=635645

 

I would say Matta is the only one that has amounted to anything- and as a d-man no less. No sour grapes here as I think Laughton is going to be a fine NHL player- just at that point in time, a dman of Matta caliber should have been the pick. 

 

Congrats to Shero and scouts for making that pick. At this point, he is the pick of the litter of the first round of that draft. 

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 I said Matta was a pretty well finished product, very mature for his age and would not be surprised if he was fast tracked....I just felt he was very sturdy in his own end, a very nice skater and that's how I drew my conclusions.

 

While I think he surpassed expectations and I DO remember you Jammer touting him during that draft and lamenting we did not take him (I believe at that time our cupboards were slim in regards to d-stock), I also think his was more by necessity of the pens (injury) than progression on his part. That said, he did acquit himself quit well for his junior team (london nights- OHL) and in the WJC for Finland. But, as we all know, the jump from junior to NHL is quite a leap and it proves your analysis / judgement correct that he was / is a finished product. It will be interesting this year to see how he handles elevated competition with the departure of Niskanen and Orpik. 19 years old. I like Laughton allot, but I like Matta more. 

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@Vanflyer  I'm not dismissing Matta's year...he was and is a very nice prospect. Perhaps even all star material in a few years. I do think Laughton is the better long term prospect...I've said that all along and will stick to my guns. We already know he's an excellent shut down type, but there is *much* more to Scott's game. His offense improved by leaps and bounds last year, I expect that progress to continue. My gut says he will make a VERY solid second line center, and some will laugh, but I think he will eventually be a 30 goal - 70 point 2nd line center in 3-4  years.  

 

  The big thing in Scott's back pocket right now is his superior play without the puck, his face off winning ability and superior smarts. He has the defensive side of the equation down cold, thanks to some very excellent coaching on the Generals part. He was brought along perfectly, learning the in's and out's of defensive play before being moved along to the top 6 in Oshawa....and the results are as expected...he is a legit prospect with TONS of upside. He was voted the top face off man in the OHL, which is a weakness on the Flyers, so a 3rd line job next year....is very possible.

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  Please bear in mind I've only seen video clips of Sanheim in action.....but just from those clips, I would say he skates better than McDonough does right now. Very interested to see some Hitmen games next year, since we have not just 1 but 2 legit prospects on that team now. The whole Flyers fanbase should be big Hitmen fans moving forward....Travis has a full 2 years with this team, so hopefully the Hitmen GM is good at his job, it's important that Sanheim has a winning program to grow and evolve with.

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...Very interested to see some Hitmen games next year, since we have not just 1 but 2 legit prospects on that team now. The whole Flyers fanbase should be big Hitmen fans moving forward....

Nice to see us drafting some big bodies from the Dub

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, so hopefully the Hitmen GM is good at his job, it's important that Sanheim has a winning program to grow and evolve with.

 

Interesting how you said that. I mentioned on (maybe this thread) how Sbisa was ruined (nearly), by his Hurricanes coach (WHL). In Sbisa's regard, while he was a call-up due to necessity, he truly should have either never been called up or never been sent back down. It has / is his undoing- in part to poor management by both his Junior team and his AHL team (but mostly his junior team). I think we can all agree he was not a flash in the pan. He had all the raw tools to be a very effective 3/4 dman. But mismanagement (and some culpability on Sbisa himself) have diminished that. 

 

Point being, (and you would know better than me), NHL teams need to appropriately monitor their investments at the amateur level- without being intrusive. The CHL / NCAA in of itself is not an end to a means for the NHL. At the same time, there has to an obligation not to eff things up for those that have skill to play in the NHL. 

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@Vanflyer  Yeah, I'm sure if the Ducks had any say, they would not wanted Sbisa to play as much as he did in his last year of junior. I know these teams wanna win and all, but at some point, you gotta step back and think "what is the best for this player development"....sometimes that does not equal what is best for what the team needs to win, but being a coach of a young players, there is a certain type of responsibility for the players long term confidence and that is not even discussing the increased injury potential. In short, his jr. coach failed him. 

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In short, his jr. coach failed him. 

 

100%. While players get traded in all levels of hockey (particularly in major juniors), I wonder if there is a degree of analysis on drafting a kid that you know is going to play 1 or more years of junior before being ready to make a leap to any level of pro hockey that either entices / instills confidence in a selection or nixes it. Point being, its an investment and while an NHL club holds rights, they have ZERO say or influence on how and what the kid does at the non-pro level. Other than perhaps off season mentoring. 

 

In sbisas case, its a shame. Yet, he is still only 24. But he has had some really good coaching in Anaheim and still did not turn it around after his junior coach completely burned him out / blew him out of the water. 

 

Its interesting he is going to Vancouver. WHL central. 

 

He is not a lost cause, but certainly a poster boy of how a junior team can eff up a player. 

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@Vanflyer  There is a "little bit" of a check and balance season. If a certain jr team has shown signs of being destructive to prospects, the NHL teams can all kinda gang up and make life tough for a CHL team. For instance, the second a player is AHL eligible, they take that player immediately. A lot of junior teams really count on guys coming back for the overage year. Most NHL will prefer to get a player going on their own specific schemes.....but exceptions are made, especially if the CHL team is stacked and could make a Memorial Cup run. Those exceptions become a thing of the past if a coach is viewed as exploiting players.....and that really hurts a teams bottom line.

 

  Another way to rock the boat is to give the player permission to go home until a trade is made to a different CHL team. There are a few ways the GM's can strike back....although I can't remember any team doing what I just wrote, demanding a trade.

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Amazing how diverse draft ratings can be. Seen you guys anywhere from a B+ to a D- till this one.

If course I also saw the Penguins rated a D+ because of the Neal trade which has nothing to do with the draft at all.

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Another way to rock the boat is to give the player permission to go home until a trade is made to a different CHL team. There are a few ways the GM's can strike back....although I can't remember any team doing what I just wrote, demanding a trade.

 

So Sbisas situation is a rare case then?? I know why the coach did it (playoff push and playoffs), but you and @flyercanuck and perhaps a couple others who follow juniors more closely than I ever did would know. 

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It is a very rare case. Most teams/coaches have the players best interest at heart. I know the Spitfires are very family based, a home away from home if you will and they would never even dream of employing a tacit like that.

 

I played div 1 (colorado college) and it was the same. I won't say it was easy and that the program did not want to push the kids to be the best, but they certainly had all players best interest at heart. Say what you want about NCAA, but its not the red headed step child to amateur hockey / chl it used to be. 

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