Recent Ovechkin numbers:not so impressed

Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by helicecopter, Dec 15, 2003.

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  1. helicecopter

    helicecopter Registered User

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    First of all, i want to make clear that i am an Ovechkin fan and so i hope the best for him.

    I‘m just a little bit puzzled with his numbers.
    It‘s not that his numbers are not good, obviously; what left me perplexed his the progression of his numbers along the last three years, so i‘d like to get some reassurances about his development.


    2001-02

    Super League (Reg. Season) 22 2 2 4
    Super League (Playoffs) 3 0 0 0
    U18 Team Russia U18 WJC IIHF (Intl.) 8 14 4 18
    Dynamo Moscow 2 Super League (Farm) 19 18 8 26


    2002-03

    Super League (Reg. Season) 40 8 8 16
    Super League (Playoffs) 5 0 0 0
    U20 Team Russia U20 IIHF WJC (Intl.) 6 6 1 7
    U18 Team Russia U18 WJC IIHF (Intl.) 6 9 4 13


    2003-04

    Super League (Reg. Season) 30 9 8 17



    Well, his numbers as a 16yrs old were almost unbelievable.
    I‘m not sure, but i guess Dynamo Moscow 2 plays in a men‘s league and even if it is the 3rd league for importance in Russia, scoring a goal per game against men is something unheard by me for a 16rs old.
    As an underager at the U18 WJC he just dominated scoring 14 goals in 8 games! He even made his debut in the super league scoring two times despite barely playing in the 22 games he dressed for dynamo.

    Last year he started the season in great fashion, he did great in the first third of RSL regular season.
    Then he faced some problems, due probably moreover to fatigue and ended up with 16 points in 40 games. Just great for a 17yrs old in the RSL, even if he produced much more in the first couple of months of the season.
    In the U20 WJC he failed to score in 4 games out of 6 games he played and specifically in both semifinal and final. He wasn‘t the leading scorer in the tournament.
    In the U18 WJC, playing against his peers, he was 3rd in points and tied for goal with pushkarev, which is something new for him, used to overmatching every other player his age in previous competition.
    He failed to match his outstanding production set the year before as an underager and failed to lead his team through the semifinals in front of their homecrowd.

    This year he is playing on Dynamo first line and has 17 in 30 games. If you think about the icetime he is getting this year and you compare it with icetime he got the years before you realize his production has probably remained the same. I mean the points per minutes-played ratio looks to be similar. So, looking at the mere numbers it looks to me that his offensive production has not improved at all in the last year and so i was more impressed with that production accomplished as 17yrs old than with the same one as an 18yrs old. The production has even decreased in junior competition.

    I know that numbers don‘t tell the whole story so i‘m asking to you to drive away my doubts if it is the case.

    These are my questions:
    Has he improved offensively in the last year despite similar production? Is he now really a more dangerous/complete scorer than in april 2002?
    Has he improved in other departments in the last year ? Is he a better player overall now (has he improved his defensive awarness, determination, skills, play along the boards,or whatever you want..) or has he just gained more endurance along his physical maturing?

    I‘m waiting for your opinions!
    In addition, i‘d like to know where i can find the updated stats of Ovechkin and Malkin, if someone have a good link…thanks in advance!
     
  2. Slay

    Slay Registered User

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    Look at Zherdev numbers ;) RSL is different league comparing to NHL, it is harder to earn points there: large hockey rink, very defensive hockey, not always so skilled linemates (comparing to Soviet hockey or NHL).

    It is Junior league

    As Ovechkin said "I am just another player on the team". Don't forget how good that team was, very deep with a lot of vets from WJC 2002. It was Ishmatov team, and not Ovechkin team. Ovechkin played the role on the team which Ishmatov wanted him to play. But this year Ovechkin is veteran... will see.

    I strongly doubt that he was thinking about that stats. After all he got the prize for the best forward of the tourney.
    Also don't forget that weak teams playing a lot versus each other trying to avoid the relegation round and thus their leaders (Pushkarev) got a lot of points but you can't really compare them to Ovechkin points scored in play off games versus noticably stronger teams.

    His production was pretty good: 13 points in 6 games. Don't forget that in 2002 he scored 18 points in 8 games. If he was thinking about his stats I am pretty sure he would score few times vs Kazakhstan when Russa won just 5-0 (Swiss beat them 13-2!!, but Russia beat Swiss 12-3 :)) Yep Russia lost in seminal in shutouts to Slovakia but it is Ovechkin scored the only goal for Russia (1-1 score before shutouts). That day whole team played pretty unimpressive but there were some reasons.

    Also he played not small amount games on 2nd line. Dynamo is the team with 4 almost equal lines. It is not like 1st line receives crazy minutes, no, I beleive 3 lines have pretty close icetime during 5 on 5 play.

    I know that numbers don?t tell the whole story so i?m asking to you to drive away my doubts if it is the case.

    He is one of the leaders of the team (he is second in points if i am not mistaken). He looks pretty impressive, strong, fast, grit, with very strong and accurate wrist shot, and he always goes back to his own end.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2003
  3. Foppa_Rules

    Foppa_Rules Registered User

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    He has played on the fourth line in the last 2 games (even then recording anassist so he is now 9-9) and on the second line in the game before that. I don't know why they put him on the 4'th line--maybe to get him rested for the WJC?--but he hasn't played on the first line for the last 3 games. I think he has been playing very well, based on the recent highlights I have seenand the fact that he is 71 votes by the fans ahead of his other Dynamo teammates and nearly 200 ahead of Dynamo's leading point-getter. I'm pretty sure he leads the team in goals and near the top in points.
     
  4. punchy1

    punchy1 Registered User

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    The other thing to remember is that this lad had to play through a couple of injuries this season as well. He still is the best young player in the world and is doing better than the rest. I can't wait until he comes to the NHL and shows everyone that he is the best.
     
  5. NYR469

    NYR469 Registered User

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    his big numbers that year were put up in the junior league, not the super league...

    in the super league he scored 4 points in 22 games as a 16 year old, upped that to 16 points in 40 games last year and 17 points thru 30 games this year...

    but the points don't translate compared to guys in canadian juniors like crosby cause the scoring in that league is much lower and he is facing grown men
     
  6. Frolov

    Frolov Registered User

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    Correct me if I'm wrong but the RSL does not award 2nd assists?
     
  7. HfxMoose

    HfxMoose Registered User

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    If he is a junior why isn't he playing with other junior players? Everyone keeps saying he plays with people much older then himself. I have no idea how the RSL works so forgive me if i sound stupid.
     
  8. JF Omalycat

    JF Omalycat CBJ Express

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    Does anyone know where I can find some highlights of this kid (on the net, or otherwise)? I'm dying to see him in action, but haven't yet had the privilege.
     
  9. Frolov

    Frolov Registered User

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    use the search feature cause Slay has some room nice videos.
     
  10. Jovavic

    Jovavic Blood Legion

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    Want a glimpse of what's to come when he dones a Jackets uni? :joker:
     
  11. Captain Ron

    Captain Ron Registered User

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    Actually Frolov they do award 2nd assists in the RSL.I think the reason for Ovechkin's line changes is just to shake the team up a bit.Dynamo hasn't been playing very well lately.
     
  12. Slay

    Slay Registered User

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    In USSR championship probably wasn't awarding but now in RSL they award 2nd assists.
     
  13. Bobby Orr's Knees

    Bobby Orr's Knees Registered User

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    1. He is good enough to play in the RSL.

    2. It's better for his development to play against the toughest competition available. His stats aren't nearly as important as his overall improvement.
     
  14. helicecopter

    helicecopter Registered User

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    Yes I know. Anyway a guy like Sushinsky is getting a lot of points in the same league and I’ve seen Maxim play several times in the past without being impressed at all and he also failed to make an impact in the NHL.

    Thanks for the correction!

    This is a good point, but it doesn’t apply to explain why he scored (I was thinking about his goals, 14 in 8 games versus 9 in 6) more the year before as an underager than in Yaroslav against his peers.
    There is no reason to think that in the same tourney in 2002 he was thinking about stats more than in 2003 and his competitors for the scoring title playing for weaker teams had the same advantage in 2002, too.

    Which were the reasons?? You seem to know something more here…


    Ok, but at least in the 2nd third of the season he played regularly on the 4th line.

    Anyway, I wasn’t saying that his stats are not very good. My point is that his offensive production (per minutes played) doesn’t look improved along the last 18 months, which is pretty unusual considering he has gone from a 16yrs and half old beginner to an 18yrs old pro.
    My doubts are coming from a comparison between the totals he got in the last year and his own stats he registered when he was so young ( say,until November 2002).
    So, basically, the question I’d like to see answered and that looks to be still unanswered at the moment is:
    Has he improved in the last year outside of his natural physical maturing process?
     
  15. West

    West Registered User

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    I wouldn't worry about his development based on his pts/min played stat. As long as his minutes played are increasing(how did you dig up that stat by the way?). The less minutes that you play the fresher your legs are and generally your coach is making sure that your playing against the other teams weaker lines. So actually keeping your pts/min played ratio the same and playing noticably more minutes is a real improvement given the extra endurance needed and quality of players your going against.

    Also from what I saw last year at the WJC(TV) he was a very physically mature kid for his age which is why his improvement curve isn't as high as you want it. Also it should be noted that he's already playing better than all expect the top 20 players in this draft ever will.

    If your expecting him to be the next Mario I'd say your likely going to be disappointed. If your looking for the next Mike Modano, or Mat Sundin he's your man.
     
  16. habsfansam

    habsfansam Registered User

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    Of course, but you are forgetting a few things...

    a young kid shows up at a tourney with lots of older players and hits the ice. He pots afew goals the first game, and coaches say wow, he had a great game. Next game he pots a few more, and coaches are now wondering where this guy came from and if they should adjust to stop him from scoring. next game the kid pops a goal early and the coach tries to adjsut his gameplan and maybe it works a little... stats get inflated for guys that are so good so young cause nobody expects them to be able to compete at the level they can... it's called being blindsided. Also, as good as he was, russia never has a weak junior team and i'd bet that roster was full of high end russian kids that other coaches/teams had to stop as well.

    Secondly... the news is out. The kid can score, and every coach and team and player in the RSL knows that when they play and Ovechkin is on the ice, they've got to watch him. Goals aren't as easy to come-by when everyone in a defense-oriented league is out to stop you at all costs. This alone, combined with injuries would slow the most talented player in the world... and quite obviously it has.

    I wouldn't worry about how he'll be as an NHLer cause he's already got the skills, size, and skating to step onto any NHL rink and impress us. even if he doesn't lead the WJC in scoring, he'll still the the top pick cause he's just that much better than everyone else, everywhere. Period.
     
  17. Slay

    Slay Registered User

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    There were more amount of games vs weaker teams in 2002. Anyways another posters mentioned that it is not only about the stats.

    I think it was coach mistake. At that day whole team looked a bit tired, without fire. That game took place at afternoon (about 12:00-13:00). But in robins Russia played all games at the evening (about 18:00-19:00) and in the afternoon players usually had resting hours (icluding some sleep). Coaches didn't prepare players well to that semifinal considerating that they should play in the afternoon and thus players wasn't ready on 100%.
     
  18. helicecopter

    helicecopter Registered User

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    That ‘of course‘ is the answer to the bold-faced question? It means: of course he has improved in the last year outside of his natural physical maturing process?

    As for the rest you wrote ( that the more you get recognized as a scoring threat the more difficult it becomes for you to score), i agree that it is something to keep in mind to intepret the stats i brought up for discussion.


    The fact is that i’m not questioning he will be good and will be the best of his class; i’m trying to figure out HOW good he will/can be.
     
  19. helicecopter

    helicecopter Registered User

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    The fact his minutes played have increased along the last two seasons in the RSL is just an assumption (i don’t have any specific stat about that), but is based on what has been reported, that is, as a 16yrs old beginner he played sparingly on the 4th line in the 22 games he dressed, last year he was shifted between the 2nd and the 4th line and this year he is playing steadily on the first 2 lines.

    .
    I was talking (asking) about improvement outside the physical/endurance department and you should also consider the quality of linemates he is playing with, which, as the one of the opposition, should increase going from 4th to 1st line.
    Anyway, altogether i think you get a point here.

    Aside from being so advanced for his age in his own physical maturing process, do you think that in last year WJC (U20) he had a physical edge against the majority of his competitors? Was part of his production due to a physical edge (despite being an underager) ?


    .
    Me not! I hope Evgenyi Malkin in the future will play better than how Ovechkin is playing now! :)

    :(


    well, i don‘t want to start an off-thread controversy about Modano, but to me he and Sundin belong to different categories. I see Sundin as one of the few best in the world and Modano as one of the many stars playing in the NHL, so i‘m looking at least for the next Sundin! :yo:
    You know, when you read for 2 years such great things about a prospect, you HOPE he will be THE NEXT ONE and not just another one..
     
  20. helicecopter

    helicecopter Registered User

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    I didn’t know it, that makes a difference. ( so i guess there was a different format in 2002.. )

    I was the first to underline that is not only about stats and that is the reason why i asked help to understand if my doubts were justified also by his play and to know more about his development from those posters who had the privilege to watch him play both recently and in the past.

    If i had the chance to do it myself ( :mad: :cry: ) i wouldn’t be forced to extract considerations (not opinions) out of his numbers and i would have my own and well based opinion.
     
  21. Mizral

    Mizral Registered User

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    It's a shame Sundin is thought of as a better player than Modano. Truely, nothing could be further from the truth. Though at times through their careers, they have been pretty close, Modano is the better guy overall.
     
  22. Jacob

    Jacob Registered User

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    I'm pretty impressed with the fact that Ovechkin has managed to match and beat his production from last season in about 11 less games.
     
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