Thelen and Barker very similar?!?

Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by Green Star, Aug 3, 2004.

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  1. Green Star

    Green Star Seggy #91

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    Is it just me or does A.J. Thelen and Cam Barker look very similar to each other both in their size and skills?

    Both are big around 6-3, 210 pounds. They put up big numbers in their league, they are offensive d-men that play ok defense. Both play physical from time to time, and they both got a great shot along with fantastic passing skills. What separate them to me is there nationality :)

    But there must be something more that separate them because one go 3rd and the other went 9 pick later at 12th overall. Any comment folks?
     
  2. ceber

    ceber Registered User

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    I've heard other people make comparisons like that. I haven't seen enough of either play to have my own opinion on the issue.

    I will say that according to many experts the difference between going 4th and 12th (and later) in this year's draft wasn't much, so Thelen probably could've gone quite a bit closer to Barker. From what I've read, Barker is considerably closer to being ready to play in the NHL than Thelen is. Just things I've read though. The Wild have come out and said they want Thelen to go back to school. This may be an indication of how ready he is, or it could also be a bit of the Wild deciding it's time to stop bringing new guys who are on the cusp into the NHL (had to start happening sooner or later as the expansion guys got rolled off).
     
  3. ktownhockey

    ktownhockey Registered User

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    I think the difference was that Cam Barker is closer to the NHL for his age and he's showed more maturity in his game. Thelen has the edge in skating but other than that Barkers got him. Barker plays a little bit more of a physical game as well.
     
  4. X-SHARKIE

    X-SHARKIE Registered User

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    I've seen both a few times, I still like Barker more then Thelen but both have tremendous upside.

    Thelen is actually bigger then Barker, but his defense is a bit hit and miss. Barker seems so calm and poised in the defensive zone and really picks his man well and takes him out of the play with great positioning. Both can be nasty at times but I wouldn't say they're are mean brutes. While Barkers defensive zone coverage is great, Thelen seems to not know what to do at times. He doesn't make bad plays by any means, but Thelen some times can be a 2nd late witch allows a shot on the net.
    If Thelens defensive game improves next year, there is no reason he couldn't be up there with Barker.
     
  5. montreal

    montreal Go Habs Go

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    imo, Barker is the safer pick, while Thelen has better upside. Both put up good numbers this year, but Thelen's numbers are more impressive. As a 17 year old playing against mostly 19-22 year olds, he was one of the top scoring defensemen in the entire NCAA. Lets see if he can produce like that again next year, but I was very impressed with him every game I saw. I was hoping he'd fall to the Habs, as I think he will be a great one. Barker I was told by one scout that there's a concern with his turning radius that if it's not improved will be exposed in the AHL/NHL level. But the guy has a ton of skill and should be a solid NHLer from what I've seen.
     
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