Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by Traitor8, Jan 11, 2004.
What do you guys think of Jozef Balej's potentiel?
The guy in my avatar is Balej
He has great skills but sometimes he's lazy and doesn't have the strength to finish a play, but from what i've heard is that Montreal will groom him in the AHL for another year or two.
Weird, because Bob Gainey mentioned not long ago Balej was soon to be callep up. A PPG is hard to ignore...
Munchausen is absolutely right. And I don't know where you got you sources "Zherdev", but your absolutely in the wrong way. I saw Balej play and he's never been lazy. He aways checks the guys in the corner(Well for a 6"0 player) and he finnishs the plays very well. He plays with lot of strenght.
Your right JB is not lazy at all , Balej is 6'1 according to the Habs btw . Balej improved greatly this year along the boards and he's playing in all situation ( PP , PK , 4on4 , end of periods ) . His speed in the neutral zone could be really effective against NHL tight defensive systhems . Most obeservers says he could turn into a good second liner .
When he plays he looks like a 6"2 player. But everywhere I saw him, they rated him at 5"11 . So I pushed it at 6"0 but it seems not enough :p. And I think he has the talent to play now on the first two line with the big teams, but there's no place. And his speed is incredible!
I saw him last night. Looked very good and scored a beautiful, pretty unique goal too!
The early comparisons to valeri Bure still hold waters IMO. He could be a quick guy who scores goals. Last night, he was impressive with quick, agile feet on a couple of occasions.
With those type of players, the question is always to determine whether they can do it in the NHL. Some of those skilled scorers can, others can't. I'm thinking that his overall game will make him a NHLer sooner or later if he always plays like last night.
I think that if he reaches his potential he'll struggle to be much more than a Valeri Bure. Or if he fills out a bit more and develops some fundamentals then perhaps Martin Rucinsky would be more accurate.
Balej's determination to go into danger areas when it counts has always been questionable. It's been said that he's improved in those areas, but I've only seen marginal improvement. Balej has excelled in the AHL where he's given more room to work with and his speed can burn most AHL defensemen. That won't happen in the NHL where he'll need to (re) learn how to make his speed effective.
With that said, I would expect to see him in the NHL at some point this season for a brief callup. We'll see how he fares then.
He put it off the outside of his skate on a 1 on 1 and then made a beautiful shot which beat Moss. Highlight reel goal.
Not sure I would compare him to Bure anymore. Well less than last year anyway. Last season I was very critical of his play as he was systematically shying away from traffic, but it doesn't seem to be the case anymore, at least not from the 4 games I saw him play this year. In fact, he seems to play with lots of emotion and a short fuse. He doesn't mind driving the net or go into corners. I think this might be a result of him playing with loads of confidence.
Truth is, confident or not, Bure has always been a peripheral talented floater running away when he ears steps behind him. I think Balej plays a more involved kind of game when confident, which could ultimately result in better (more consistent) results in the NHL. I'm still not thrilled about his play away from the puck though, especially in his own zone. But it has improved since last year. I still question his ability to adapt and thrive under Montreal's defensive system, but playing under Jarvis this year sure improves his chances.
Balej will make a fine NHLer... someday. I wouldn't question his speed, because he's got unique wheels even at the NHL level; the thing that will get him at the NHL level is his decision making with and without the puck. Question what you want, but don't question his speed or his hands... both are definitely top6 forward-worthy.
He will probably get a brief callup later this season, but i'd bet that he stays in Hamilton to work on his deficiencies... defensive coverage, play off the puck, etc.
As for his potential... if he continues to develop, i see him on a scoring line in montreal and potting 30-40goals/yr. The guy has been a scorer all his life (check the junior stats... they're sick) and he'll either bust or go big... i'm betting on big.
Balej could *maybe* score 30 goals in today's NHL. 40 is out of reach unless there are drastic changes (improvements) in his game.
I agree with you. His hands and speed are his strong assets.
We'll see. Balej has a fiery personality from what I've seen, but that doesn't translate into being willing and able to get into danger areas on the ice.
They're perfectly valid comparisons until he proves me wrong at the NHL level.
The player Balej reminds me the most of is Berezin. He may end up being better, but hes currently that type of player IMO. Fast skater, good scorer but isnt overly strong or that creative.
I would say he has Bure's hockey sense, Rucinsky's speed...but he possess a shot and a goal scorers instinct more than those two he has been compaired to.
His potential is much higher than the two above mentioned players.
That would be a call-up, not full-time duty. A call-up does not mean that he still won't be "groomed" in the AHL.
A call-up is a shot at making the bigs full time, especially in a Montreal team which is far from being an offensive power house. Whether he ceases that chance or not is an other story.
ive seen him play maybe 4 times this year, he looks like a heavily skilled skater and above average hands, his hockey sence looked great to tell you the truth imo he looks a tad like nedved.