Monday, May 21, 2012

"Welcome to NAIL Country" Part IV

This, the last and final part of my postings on Nail Yakupov, is focused on the value Nail brings to an organization.  This guy knows how to finish a check, and how too take a hit as well. Even more importantly it's the impact he brings to the ice , each and every time takes a shift.
Summarized Scouting Report on 'Nail Yakupov'

A gifted goal scoring forward ... feisty, dynamic, explosive ... should be able to step into the next level very quickly and continue to progress ... very quick and elusive skater ... explosive bursts of speed ... has the ability to change direction in a flash ... maintains a low centre of gravity ... plays with a healthy amount of energy each shift ... throws his limited weight around and will not back down from physical play ... attacks the dirty areas without hesitation ... pos­sesses a rocket of a shot with lightning quick release ... possesses a heat-seeking one-timer ... understanding of scoring principles off the rush ... possesses natural scorers instincts ... the awareness of where to be on the ice to utilize that shot ... has been good in all three zones ... a true character ... easily one of the more popular players among his teammates ... constantly working on his game ... shows passion and drive on a nightly basis
Lack of size will prevent him from playing a rugged style in the NHL every shift ... tries to do too much with the puck and he could use linemates more at times ... working on the defensive aspect of his game and his play away from the puck
"His first step and ability to control bouncing pucks, knock them down and make a play are the best of any of the guys in the draft," said central scouting's Chris Edwards told "He really gets up to top speed very quickly and his hands are outstanding. Like Pavel Bure, Yakupov is dangerous every shift. He may not have been dominant on every shift like Bure was, but he created something every shift . . . you have to be aware where he is on the ice all the time."

Some questions have been raised about how good Yakupov truly is. I have no doubt in my observations these past 2 years that Nail is a Elite talent far above the rest of his draft class. 

A year ago there were some scouts believing Nail was a 'generational' talent. This year, we are not having anyone say the same. Why is that? Until the World U20 Junior Championship Nail was still being considered that 'generational' player. Following the injuries, it is not heard by many. Most MSM would tell you Yakupov is not a "Generational" player but I would say, there is nothing showing this guy will slow down his development as a world class player.

Maybe Nail has not yet proven anything at the NHL level, but how many more years do we have to hear that same argument? I heard that about Eric Lindros, Sidney Crosby, Steven Stamkos, John Tavares, Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. The list is even greater but I think you get the point.

Is there interest for this player? Absolutely! What could be offered for Nail Yakupov at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft? Let's take a closer look at the possible trade scenario's that could be offered and a realistic look at what would be accepted;

#2. Blue Jackets

It doesn't look like Columbus has a big enough desire to trade up 1 spot in the draft when there is Murray, Rielly, Galchenyuk, Grigorenko and Reinhart still sitting there at #2. The price should Edmonton choose to do so? Ryan Johanson and that story has been revisited more times then it should have been. Columbus has nothing to offer other then Johanson or Jack Johnson and neither is going to be traded from the Blue Jackets. 
#3. Canadiens

The Montreal Gazette envisions a scenario where Nail Yakupov might fall all the way to third place and be scooped up to the Canadiens.

They called it a "blue-sky scenario," but basically the logic is that, if the Edmonton Oilers draft based on their greatest need, then they'll take blueliner Ryan Murray with the first overall pick. Yakupov would then fall to the Columbus Blue Jackets, who might hesitate to take another Russian player fresh off their inability to develop Nikita Filatov. It's worth noting that the Edmonton Oilers have expressed a willingness to take Yakupov with the first overall pick, despite their abundance of young, talented offensive forwards. It's also possible that the Blue Jackets or Oilers could trade down, which would allow Yakupov to go with to a team where he's a potentially better fit. It would be very surprising if Yakupov fell all the way to third, but the possibility also can't be completely dismissed. 

It makes no sense whatsoever Nail falling to 2nd let alone 3rd. No time in history has a player ranked so high with being the consensus #1 for 2 years every fallen that low. To fall that low, there would have been some signs leading up to the draft days.

That being said, is there any possibility of the Oilers wanting anything from Montreal? The Oilers would like that #3 draft position but the only roster player of great interest would be PK.Subban. I highly doubt Montreal gives up a Big talented Centermen and PK.Subban to draft Yakupov no matter how great he could become. 

#4. Islanders

The Islanders are much like the Oilers in that they are trying hard to work on their defensive game. Their blueline is limited for top end talent so chances of getting any defencemen is next to nothing. The only possible scenario could be the Islanders #4 pick and Ryan Strome. That would be about the only trade possibility the Oilers would accept. Anything less and you might as well keep Yakupov at #1. For the NYI, it would represent a giant risk, but Charles Wang is a owner who likes to make a impact. Not out of the question but a low percentage chance to make happen.

#5. Maple Leafs

The Maple Leafs are a team that likes to be in the front lines and is always looking for a 'Big Name' player. Yakupov does not represent a team need for Toronto, but neither does Nash and there is lots of speculation from reliable sources they are still pressing for a trade there as well.

A article released in Toronto wrote;...

#7. Wild

A #7 pick from the Wild would still represent a decent player for the future but not soon enough to make a impact for a couple years. This would mean they need a player off the Wild roster who could make a impact and is possibly available. I see no player a fit with the Wild to make this a potential trade partner.

I know some oiler fans think there is some defencemen the club would like from the Hurricanes but Ryan Murphy and that is unlikely. I would say there looks to be no possibility of a trade here.

#9. Jets

The Jets are a team that has one player that Oiler fans believe could see in the Blue and Orange named Zack Bogosian. Mark Scheifele is a center that the Oilers could use as well but both players are highly unlikely to be traded. The only possibility would be Oilers #1 and Gagner for Jets #9 and Bogosian. Would the Jets do this? It is possible but highly doubt the Oilers would be interested.

#10. Lightning

What are players that the Oilers would want or could possibly be interested in? Connolly, Malone would be the only players of interest and Malone is only got a few years to play so I doubt they would want to entertain that one. Maybe a Brett Connolly and #10 pick for Oilers #1 pick?

I see no possibility of any deal that would make lots of sense for both the Oilers and or another team. Any team below a #10 pick the Oilers would have no interest in, the Oilers are still rebuilding. The more a person looks at this thing, the greater the possibility ,Nail gets picked #1 at the NHL Entry Draft

"Welcome to NAIL Country" 
home of 'the Russian Machine' Nail Yakupov

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