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Old 07-24-2019, 12:04 PM   #1
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Default The Athletic - Top 50 Drafted NHL Prospects - 2 Flames Make Cut

An annual ranking done by Scott Wheeler of the Athletic has two Flames on the list this year, ranked 23rd (Valimaki) and 49th (Dube). Among his criteria to be eligible, the player must be under 23 and must not have played in the majority of his games last year with his NHL club.

https://twitter.com/statuses/1154072967288164352

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23. Juuso Valimaki, LHD, 20 (Calgary Flames — 16th overall, 2017)

Long a favorite of mine, Valimaki is the antithesis to a lot of the smaller defenceman you’ll notice I’m really high on here. In a game that’s now built on finesse and subtlety, Valimaki is the big, strong, powerful defender who is physical along the boards and can bomb it from the offensive zone blue line. But he’s also cerebral when he needs to be, a stout defender when timing and stick work are called for over physicality and a strong outlet passer. He’s the kind of D partner every player wants alongside them and someone who could support a better player on the top pairing or carry a bottom pairing.
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49. Dillon Dube, C/LW, 20 (Calgary Flames — 56th overall, 2016)

Most kids begin with talent and figure out how to play hockey after. Dube begun by figuring out the ins and outs of being a strong two-way hockey player before his talent caught up. Now it has and he’s got everything he needs to be a versatile NHL forward.
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Old 07-24-2019, 12:04 PM   #2
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Valimaki feels much too low. Dube is about right.
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Old 07-24-2019, 12:23 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by TheScorpion View Post
Valimaki feels much too low. Dube is about right.
Here's the full list taken from the article.

SNIP!

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Old 07-24-2019, 12:23 PM   #4
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Don't think I agree with their "top-pairing support or bottom-paring carry" view of Valimaki.

I see our future top pair as Valimaki Andersson, and I don't really see either one supporting or carrying the other. (I mean, obviously both would support each other, but not at the level where that's the only reason they're on the top pair.)
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Old 07-24-2019, 12:31 PM   #5
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The scouts did a helluva job with Fox.
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Old 07-24-2019, 12:34 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by FanIn80 View Post
Don't think I agree with their "top-pairing support or bottom-paring carry" view of Valimaki.

I see our future top pair as Valimaki Andersson, and I don't really see either one supporting or carrying the other. (I mean, obviously both would support each other, but not at the level where that's the only reason they're on the top pair.)
I'm curious, why do you have Valimaki ahead of Hanifin? I'm not trying to crack on you, I just think Hanifin is underrated around here.

Hanifin isn't yet 23. He has four seasons under his belt and had a really good year on our 2nd pair. Nearly 21 minutes a night, went from -20 to +18. Giveaways were an issue, but it was his first year in this type of role. Only five of his 33 points came on the powerplay, so he was an Excellent 5v5 producer. If anything, they need to do more to get Hanifin involved in the power play this coming season.

To my view, Hanifin's skating is also light years better than Valimaki. But skating isn't everything, just ask Kylington.
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Old 07-24-2019, 12:42 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by FanIn80 View Post
Don't think I agree with their "top-pairing support or bottom-paring carry" view of Valimaki.

I see our future top pair as Valimaki Andersson, and I don't really see either one supporting or carrying the other. (I mean, obviously both would support each other, but not at the level where that's the only reason they're on the top pair.)
I thought they meant he's already capable of supporting a top d-man or carrying a bottom pairing. His ceiling I would agree is obviously higher than that.
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Old 07-24-2019, 12:51 PM   #8
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I haven't seen too many of those players, but I guarantee that Välimäki is going to be a much better player than Heponiemi. I was pretty shocked to see Heponiemi ranked higher than Juuso.
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Old 07-24-2019, 12:56 PM   #9
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anyone able to post the top 50 list?
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:02 PM   #10
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Technically 3 flames draft picks!

Adam Fox is #10 on the list.

We can complain about certain things as fans over the past few years, but the flames' drafting is not one of them.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:03 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by GreenLantern2814 View Post
I'm curious, why do you have Valimaki ahead of Hanifin? I'm not trying to crack on you, I just think Hanifin is underrated around here.

Hanifin isn't yet 23. He has four seasons under his belt and had a really good year on our 2nd pair. Nearly 21 minutes a night, went from -20 to +18. Giveaways were an issue, but it was his first year in this type of role. Only five of his 33 points came on the powerplay, so he was an Excellent 5v5 producer. If anything, they need to do more to get Hanifin involved in the power play this coming season.

To my view, Hanifin's skating is also light years better than Valimaki. But skating isn't everything, just ask Kylington.
Valimaki has a higher upside than Hanifin IMO. He’s better with the puck. I think Valimaki easily has the highest upside of all of our young dmen.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:05 PM   #12
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I know I wouldn't trade Valimaki for a (signed) Fox straight up, that's for sure. How he's ranked that much higher than Valimaki, I'll never know.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenLantern2814 View Post
I'm curious, why do you have Valimaki ahead of Hanifin? I'm not trying to crack on you, I just think Hanifin is underrated around here.

Hanifin isn't yet 23. He has four seasons under his belt and had a really good year on our 2nd pair. Nearly 21 minutes a night, went from -20 to +18. Giveaways were an issue, but it was his first year in this type of role. Only five of his 33 points came on the powerplay, so he was an Excellent 5v5 producer. If anything, they need to do more to get Hanifin involved in the power play this coming season.

To my view, Hanifin's skating is also light years better than Valimaki. But skating isn't everything, just ask Kylington.
I’m also not cracking on you. And in the spirit of transparent disclosure I was very down on Hanifin after the playoffs. I really felt like he struggled more than any other flames d man in the playoffs. Maybe stats disagree with me? Idk... it sure seemed like he was getting exposed nightly.

So, here it is. I know he’s young, but he is being paid according to his games experience. I don’t think that it’s right to continue to reference their age on one hand as justification for mistakes and inexperienced play when the guy is paid as a competent middle pairing d man. And I do think there’s still upside but still.

I think when Valimaki gets 300 games played under his belt he will be a top pairing guy. He’s just so much better under pressure than Hanifin. Just my two bits.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:07 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by The Yen Man View Post
I know I wouldn't trade Valimaki for a (signed) Fox straight up, that's for sure. How he's ranked that much higher than Valimaki, I'll never know.
Easy. Some people judge prospects heavily based on stats. Fox has some pretty outrageous scoring stats in college.

But scouting shouldn’t be done based on stats. Valimaki is miles ahead of Fox.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:08 PM   #15
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I know I wouldn't trade Valimaki for a (signed) Fox straight up, that's for sure. How he's ranked that much higher than Valimaki, I'll never know.
Not arguing but asking why you say that because I haven’t seen any more than highlights of Fox. And I guess some action at world juniors. But IIRC Pronman has him super high too.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:09 PM   #16
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Valimaki seems fine from where I sit. He's just behind Erik Brannstrom and Noah Dobson among defensemen, which seems perfectly fair. He doesn't warrant being up with Boqvist and Fabbro. Fox being where he is seems to be a consensus view among scouts.

However, Evan Bouchard at 5 seems too high. Poehling at 50 seems way low.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:10 PM   #17
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Easy. Some people judge prospects heavily based on stats. Fox has some pretty outrageous scoring stats in college.

But scouting shouldn’t be done based on stats. Valimaki is miles ahead of Fox.
I think you’re right. How many stud d men have come out of NCAA hockey? A handful? I think the college game is great for guys like Fox. But when he has Lucic bearing down on him with bad intentions (yeah I said it) will he make the same slick plays? I don’t think so.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:15 PM   #18
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Hanifin vs Valimaki is a tough debate to me. Hanifin also young and already an established Top 4 guy. Many people think though that Valimaki will be better than Hanifin given time.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:18 PM   #19
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I saw Bouchard at 5, and I was like not off to a good start and then I saw Fox at 10 and the article lost all credibility in my mind.

I never saw the upside with Fox. He's small, he's an average skater at best, he is terrible in his own zone even amongst his peers, he doesn't have a great shot. He does have good vision. Overall I see him as a bottom pairing/PP specialist at best.

In my opinion Fox doesn't even belong on the list.
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:18 PM   #20
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Not arguing but asking why you say that because I haven’t seen any more than highlights of Fox. And I guess some action at world juniors. But IIRC Pronman has him super high too.
Just my personal preference. Admittedly, I've also not watched a lot of Fox other than college highlights and when he played at the WJC. I just think Valimaki is a better complete dman, while Fox has the higher offensive ability. To me, I'd rather my dman be more well rounded rather than elite at offence, but mediocre defensively.

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