Finnish Goaltending Question

Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by Heat McManus, Aug 31, 2006.

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  1. Heat McManus

    Heat McManus Registered User

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    Do you think the new crop of goaltenders coming out of Finland are more athletic and naturally capable or are they the beneficiaries of goaltending specialists since the age of 9? Does the rest of the world catch up with them once they get to the higher levels with more personalized coaching?
     
  2. Team_Spirit

    Team_Spirit #FireBergevin

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    It's obiviously the beneficiaries of goaltending specialists.
     
  3. Heat McManus

    Heat McManus Registered User

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    At what level do you think most NA and other European goaltenders get one-on-one coaching from goalie coaches?
     
  4. Phenomenon

    Phenomenon Registered User

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    It would be most unlikely that a country of little over 5 million people could have so much natural talent compared to other countries. Think for example Ilves of Tampere: they have got a first round goalie pick (Rask and Helenius) from last 2 years. Pure luck? Don't think so. The relatively small team has a long history of producing great goaltenders many of which have become international level starters (Jukka Tammi, Jarmo Myllys) or reliable league starters (Korhonen, Pitkämäki, Pietilä, Manninen etc.) and some even starters in NHL (Vesa Toskala). The same relatively small city (200,00 people) has also another team, Tappara, which has at the same time produced two NHL goalies: Noronen and Markkanen.

    TPS of Turku can also be very proud of the work of Urpo Ylönen (former Finnish national team starter) and other specialists involved in goalie coaching. The team from a small town of 170 000 inhabitants have produced NHL goalies like Kiprusoff, Niittymäki, Hurme and Norrena within past 10 years. Hämeenlinna just 80 km south of Tampere has only a little over 40,000 inhabitants, but still there is at the moment two NHL goalies from that team (H. Toivonen and Rämö) and two more soon-to-be (Wiikman and J. Toivonen). Elsewhere they have grown talents like Lehtonen, Rinne, Nurminen, Bäckström...

    I could continue these kind of examples further, but I think you got the point. Of course these teams recruit actively young prospects from other areas, but compared to scouting resources the results are great. There seems to be quite good scouts that are able to pick out the best kids at the early age and bring them to bigger teams, where their development is under continuous surveillance and there is a secure and patient environment for a balanced growth.

    All the Finnish goalies that have experience from abroad are saying that Finnish goaltending coaching is of best quality at the moment. This argument can also be based on the fact that most of the Finnish NHL goalies want to come to Finland during summer to train under the supervision of their past mentors.
     
  5. 12# Peter Bondra

    12# Peter Bondra Registered User

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    In Slovakia Im not sure if goalies even get personal coaches. Maybe the team has one for like 3-4 but 1 for 1? Doubt it.

    Thats what I think really helpes them (the FIN G's).
     
  6. Team_Spirit

    Team_Spirit #FireBergevin

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    Bump... NHL.com got an Interesting article on the subjet yesterday:

    Link

    Most of the article is dedicated to Riku Helenius but they talk a bit about Finnish goalies.
     
  7. Heat McManus

    Heat McManus Registered User

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    this article is actually what spawned my question. In hindsight I should have posted it. thank you for adding relevancy to the post.
     
  8. MM425

    MM425 Registered User

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    Finland = "The New" Quebec when it comes to producing goalies.
     
  9. Phenomenon

    Phenomenon Registered User

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    I this Finnish article (http://www.jatkoaika.com/nhl.php?sivu=kolumnit&id=4853) Hannu Toivonen says that he still is in contacts with his long-time coach in Finland (Mikko Eloranta) actively. Game videos are sent via email and after that they might discuss about his game etc. Good contacts back to Finland help in development and therefore it does not matter that Boston's goalie coach has to focus on other players as well.

    Toivonen learned how to practise at an early age of 11-13 years and his flexibility is a product of long-time training a program. Now this work is paying back, because flexibility diminishes injury risks, helps movement in the grease and brings speed to muscles. Toivonen says that coaching goalies is much more professional in Finland than in NA. In NA they wait until players are 15-16 years old before really focusing on scouting a talented goalie out of them. Also no-one really contributes on training the small kids and a good goalie coaching is more like a "Big Boys' Treat".
     
  10. Matti_A

    Matti_A Registered User

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    I think Finland has always had very talented goalies. They've usually been the backbone of our national teams. So to me it's not like the quality of finnish goalies has suddenly improved.
    In the late 80's early 90's we had guys like Jarmo Myllys, Kari Takko, Jukka Tammi, Markus Ketterer, Ari Sulander etc.
    IMO the reason finnish goalies became more popular overseas is the fact that nowadays it's easier for european goalies to get a decent chance in the nhl compared to 10-15 years ago.
     
  11. Phenomenon

    Phenomenon Registered User

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    Most of that is true, but when compared to Finnish production of potential first line forwards and first pair Dmen, there's a big difference in the benefit of potential starter goalies. So IMO there has happened something in past 20 years. In the past there were not as many top goalie prospects as nowadays in almost every age group, although there were many great goalies.

    Whereas our forwards seem to be in the right track until U18 and then suddenly get left behind their foreign counterparts and reach their potential maybe 2-3 years after them, the goalies seem to do vice versa.
     

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