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Jake Virtanen | #18 | RW


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On 6/28/2017 at 0:47 PM, kloubek said:

If he was going to put a serious offensive game together, I think he would have done it by now.... at least against AHL defenders.   Even that hasn't happened.

 

Jake looks destined to be a 3rd liner to grind out his career.  I'm not saying a light bulb might not turn on in his head - I just find it unlikely.

he's 20 years old dude.  Markus Granlund and Sven Baertschi are just starting to show top 6 potential and they are 24.  Not too long ago they were complete write offs, and it has taken a couple of years after that with the Canucks for them to show they have that potential.  With Jake, maybe he is not progressing as fast as people would like for such a high draft pick, but I wouldnt write him off just yet.  Between Green and Trent Cull he will have excellent guidance.

 

Edited by SILLY GOOSE
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2 hours ago, SILLY GOOSE said:

he's 20 years old dude.  Markus Granlund and Sven Baertschi are just starting to show top 6 potential and they are 24.  Not too long ago they were complete write offs, and it has taken a couple of years after that with the Canucks for them to show they have that potential.  With Jake, maybe he is not progressing as fast as people would like for such a high draft pick, but I wouldnt write him off just yet.  Between Green and Trent Cull he will have excellent guidance.

Oh I get it.  He's young, and anything can happen.  I just don't see the hockey IQ in effect with Jake.  He has tools - no doubt about that, but he SHOULD be scoring more than we've seen... at least in the AHL.

 

As for comparing him to Baertschi and Granlund, I don't think they were considered "write offs" at all.  They were just considered to be guys who had skills but it wasn't believed they were ready to translate those skills to the NHL level, and that it is unlikely either were destined to be 1st liners.  And ultimately, that appears to have been exactly the case for both of them - it appears their ceiling is 2nd line players imo.  Also, you should note that both had almost a point-a-game seasons in the AHL 2-3 seasons before coming into the NHL full time.  (Granlund moreso... Baertschi closer to about .75ppg, but that's why most of us feel Granlund has the bigger upside)  What has Virtanen accomplished?  About a point every 3 games, or .33 or so.  

 

Now, I'm sure there are other aspects to this, such as the possibility that Virtanen was told to ignore scoring in favour of working on the weak areas of his game.  And if that is the case, perhaps he should get a break from the fans.  I don't know if this is true or not, and I'm not interested in looking through this entire thread as to gain knowledge as to whether it is believed he was told that.  But assuming that is not the case, his numbers look extremely low to me and almost certainly guarantees we don't have the next Lucic on our hands.

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On 2017-07-18 at 2:47 PM, Alflives said:

Just looking at the stats for another sniper in Junior, who didn't figure out being a professional until 23/24.  He was even called "pudgy", lazy, out of shape (oh, and not smart enough.). He had a pretty good career.  

http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=2410

 

I grew up going to Joey Cyr's Super Summer Hockey Camps with Brett Hull as a kid in Winnipeg (he was a year older than me, so I never played with him or against him, but at summer camp, we skated on the ice together going through the same drills).  You should have seen him when he was 10 to 12 years old.  With the amount of baby fat on him, calling him "pudgy" was an understatement...being the Golden Jets' son gave him a sense of entitlement and he didn't try all that hard.  But, even as a 12 year old, he was able to put the puck in the top corner from his own goal line 9 times out of 10.  In spite of all his so-called shortcomings, you knew there was something special about him.  Brett was a fat, obnoxious, entitled, hockey millionaire's son, but he had a terrible home life (Bobby Hull was a wife beater with Brett's mother -- this is a fact, so much so as a kid, that I remember being at the rink where Bobby was laughed at for campaigning to remove violence from hockey but condoned it in the home)...and it wasn't until Brett was well into hockey career that he reconciled with Bobby.

 

True story.

 

Keep forgetting that this is a Virtanen thread...like those who say he's only 20, I think it only makes sense to give the kid a break and be patient with him.  I've said in this thread and others that my expectation for Virtanen is for him to be as good as Raffi Torres.  Torres was an effective player who was able to change the dynamics of the game. It will be too bad that Benning used a sixth overall on Virtanen when other skilled players were available, but if he turns out to be another Raffi Torres, I don't think it will constitute a wasted pick.

Edited by bigbadcanucks
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4 hours ago, CanuckGAME said:

That's creepy dude.  Who cares haha.

 

I have a good feeling about Jake.  He is going to come out FLYING in training camp.

Haha I know, I also did not see him at Subway. It's just fun throwing that out there every once in awhile. Last time I did it, people started freaking out :bigblush:

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2 hours ago, bigbadcanucks said:

I grew up going to Joey Cyr's Super Summer Hockey Camps with Brett Hull as a kid in Winnipeg (he was a year older than me, so I never played with him or against him, but at summer camp, we skated on the ice together going through the same drills).  You should have seen him when he was 10 to 12 years old.  With the amount of baby fat on him, calling him "pudgy" was an understatement...being the Golden Jets' son gave him a sense of entitlement and he didn't try all that hard.  But, even as a 12 year old, he was able to put the puck in the top corner from his own goal line 9 times out of 10.  In spite of all his so-called shortcomings, you knew there was something special about him.  Brett was a fat, obnoxious, entitled, hockey millionaire's son, but he had a terrible home life (Bobby Hull was a wife beater with Brett's mother -- this is a fact, so much so as a kid, that I remember being at the rink where Bobby was laughed at for campaigning to remove violence from hockey but condoned it in the home)...and it wasn't until Brett was well into hockey career that he reconciled with Bobby.

 

True story.

 

Keep forgetting that this is a Virtanen thread...like those who say he's only 20, I think it only makes sense to give the kid a break and be patient with him.  I've said in this thread and others that my expectation for Virtanen is for him to be as good as Raffi Torres.  Torres was an effective player who was able to change the dynamics of the game. It will be too bad that Benning used a sixth overall on Virtanen when other skilled players were available, but if he turns out to be another Raffi Torres, I don't think it will constitute a wasted pick.

My point with Brett Hull is that guys who are fat and out of shape, but show signs of potential elite skills (shooting for example) cannot be evaluated completely until (if ever) they play at the proper weight and are fit - until they "get it".  Jake is now 30 pounds lighter, and fit.  He is way more talented than Raffi Tores.  Jake will show this season just how much he was the right pick at six, over those small, soft, perimeter, never be playoff guys that were picked soon after him.  Guys on this forum talk endlessly about a couple guys picked after Jake.  JB passed over those guys because they will NEVER be part of a team that wins a Cup.  JB believed Jake, on the other hand, will be a guy who does make a difference in a Cup run.  

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39 minutes ago, Alflives said:

My point with Brett Hull is that guys who are fat and out of shape, but show signs of potential elite skills (shooting for example) cannot be evaluated completely until (if ever) they play at the proper weight and are fit - until they "get it".  Jake is now 30 pounds lighter, and fit.  He is way more talented than Raffi Tores.  Jake will show this season just how much he was the right pick at six, over those small, soft, perimeter, never be playoff guys that were picked soon after him.  Guys on this forum talk endlessly about a couple guys picked after Jake.  JB passed over those guys because they will NEVER be part of a team that wins a Cup.  JB believed Jake, on the other hand, will be a guy who does make a difference in a Cup run.  

I think you've got part of the equation there Alf.  The other part is getting himself between the dots with the puck so that he can use that shot.  

 

I think he was able to dominate physically his whole life until he hit the bigs.  That was what was behind last years weight gain.  He wanted to dominate physically and to do that he thought that he needed to be 230 lbs.  The good news is that he's back on track at 205 ish and can utilize his speed which is really what they want.  I don't see him playing like a bull in a china shop at that weight but if he can figure out how to be effective he has the tools to do well.  Like so many, his style has to change now that he's playing with the big boys.  He may take a year or two to grow into it but I think he will.  

 

Jake is on the back burner for me.  That doesn't mean that I've given up on him.  It only means that he's going to have to simmer for a while.  He's a slow cooker.  I'm hoping the wait will be worth it.

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52 minutes ago, Alflives said:

My point with Brett Hull is that guys who are fat and out of shape, but show signs of potential elite skills (shooting for example) cannot be evaluated completely until (if ever) they play at the proper weight and are fit - until they "get it".  Jake is now 30 pounds lighter, and fit.  He is way more talented than Raffi Tores.  Jake will show this season just how much he was the right pick at six, over those small, soft, perimeter, never be playoff guys that were picked soon after him.  Guys on this forum talk endlessly about a couple guys picked after Jake.  JB passed over those guys because they will NEVER be part of a team that wins a Cup.  JB believed Jake, on the other hand, will be a guy who does make a difference in a Cup run.  

If you look at their history, they have a lot in common...

 

(1) Both with similar offensive stats as juniors (weighted a little higher for Torres since there was more offensive production at the junior level during the years he played in the OHL -- late 1998-2001)

(2) Similar size -- 6'-ish and over 205 lbs; both with a combination of size and skill at the junior level

(3) Torres taken 5th in his draft class; Virtanen 6th in his (so they were rated similarly in their respective draft years)

(4) Torres spent parts of three seasons in the AHL before he became a permanent NHL player -- Jake parts of two, with some time in the AHL this coming season (projection)

 

Torres went onto having what I thought was a respectable NHL career for a player that more was expected of at the time of his draft.  If Virtanen can deliver 15 to 20 goals a season, while driving opposing players crazy with big hits and gritty two way play, with a perennial cap hit of $2.5M to $3.0M, then IMO, he will be well worth the draft pick, especially if players like Pettersen and Boeser turn into elite, top six players that they are projected to be.

 

If it turns out that Virtanen is the second coming of Cam Neely, then Benning hit a home run.  If it's Raffi Torres, then it's a double down the line.  Lots of World Series' have been won with a batting order that produced singles and doubles.

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1 minute ago, bigbadcanucks said:

If you look at their history, they have a lot in common...

 

(1) Both with similar offensive stats as juniors (weighted a little higher for Torres since there was more offensive production at the junior level during the years he played in the OHL -- late 1998-2001)

(2) Similar size -- 6'-ish and over 205 lbs; both with a combination of size and skill at the junior level

(3) Torres taken 5th in his draft class; Virtanen 6th in his (so they were rated similarly in their respective draft years)

(4) Torres spent parts of three seasons in the AHL before he became a permanent NHL player -- Jake parts of two, with some time in the AHL this coming season (projection)

 

Torres went onto having what I thought was a respectable NHL career for a player that more was expected of at the time of his draft.  If Virtanen can deliver 15 to 20 goals a season, while driving opposing players crazy with big hits and gritty two way play, with a perennial cap hit of $2.5M to $3.0M, then IMO, he will be well worth the draft pick, especially if players like Pettersen and Boeser turn into elite, top six players that they are projected to be.

 

If it turns out that Virtanen is the second coming of Cam Neely, then Benning hit a home run.  If it's Raffi Torres, then it's a double down the line.  Lots of World Series' have been won with a batting order that produced singles and doubles.

I appreciate your stats, and the time you took to present them.  I don't see Jake as a Neely (power forward) or a Tores (energy guy). Jake is a speedy, talented winger with a great shot, who (at times) can make a physical difference.  I see Jake as a bigger, faster, and more skilled Jannik Hansen - when he's not producing points, he still effects the game in several other ways.  That's a very important player on a successful team.  

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10 minutes ago, Alflives said:

I appreciate your stats, and the time you took to present them.  I don't see Jake as a Neely (power forward) or a Tores (energy guy). Jake is a speedy, talented winger with a great shot, who (at times) can make a physical difference.  I see Jake as a bigger, faster, and more skilled Jannik Hansen - when he's not producing points, he still effects the game in several other ways.  That's a very important player on a successful team.  

If Jake turns out to be a heavier Jannik Hansen, then I'll gladly take that.  Hansen has great wheels...so if Virtanen can match Hansen's speed, that will be fantastic.  As many of the experts (Travis Green in particular) have stated, Virtanen doesn't have to be producing offensively to make a difference in a game.  As you say, he has the potential to effect the game in several other ways. 

 

Good thing with most hockey players is that certain skill sets never really diminish...it's just a matter of figuring out how to take those skills and make it work at the NHL level.  Hopefully Virtanen is ready to show that the talent and skill he displayed in juniors can be fully utilized/exploited at the pro level. 

Edited by bigbadcanucks
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1 minute ago, bigbadcanucks said:

If Jake turns out to be a heavier Jannik Hansen, then I'll gladly take that.  Hansen has great wheels...so if Virtanen can match Hansen's speed, that will be fantastic.  As many of the experts (Travis Green in particular) have stated, Virtanen doesn't have to be producing offensively to make a difference in a game.  As you say, he has the potential to effect the game in several other ways. 

 

Good thing with most hockey players is that certain skill sets never really diminish...it's just a matter of figuring out how to take those skills and make it work at the NHL level.  Hopefully Virtanen is ready to show that the talent and skill he displayed in juniors can be fully utilized/exploited at the pro level. 

Edit: hit quote button instead of edit button.  Brain fart.

Edited by bigbadcanucks
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3 hours ago, bigbadcanucks said:

Edit: hit quote button instead of edit button.  Brain fart.

I think Jake has the potential to make a positive contribution on the Canucks whether it is from 4th line, turd line, 2nd line or top  line.

His skill set is rare and be useful in many different roles / situations. 

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On 7/25/2017 at 9:52 PM, kingofsurrey said:

I think Jake has the potential to make a positive contribution on the Canucks whether it is from 4th line, turd line, 2nd line or top  line.

His skill set is rare and be useful in many different roles / situations. 

hoping that jake fulfills his potential. 

but i'm not sure if he makes the team this year, might need another half year in the AHL to develop his offensive potential. 

if he can show some offensive progression, that's fantastic, i think there might be some hope for him yet before the end of the year. 

 

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On 8/1/2017 at 1:16 AM, N4ZZY said:

hoping that jake fulfills his potential. 

but i'm not sure if he makes the team this year, might need another half year in the AHL to develop his offensive potential. 

if he can show some offensive progression, that's fantastic, i think there might be some hope for him yet before the end of the year. 

 

He's got a ways to go before he makes the team, at least a year in a best case scenario. Right now he is a nondescript, non impactful third line winger in the AHL according to everyone here who watched him play in Utica last season. We have to hope he develops significantly over the course of the season in Utica this year because he'll be waiver eligible in 2018.

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On ‎8‎/‎1‎/‎2017 at 2:16 AM, N4ZZY said:

hoping that jake fulfills his potential. 

but i'm not sure if he makes the team this year, might need another half year in the AHL to develop his offensive potential. 

if he can show some offensive progression, that's fantastic, i think there might be some hope for him yet before the end of the year. 

 

When he gets his chance, IMHO I think he would be a great asset on a line with Gagner as Gagner is a pass first Center with good D. Would give Virtanen a little more freedom on the offensive side of the puck, then maybe we can get an idea of what kind of player we have

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On 8/2/2017 at 10:25 AM, Sedinery33 said:

When he gets his chance, IMHO I think he would be a great asset on a line with Gagner as Gagner is a pass first Center with good D. Would give Virtanen a little more freedom on the offensive side of the puck, then maybe we can get an idea of what kind of player we have

I'm hoping as well he will make the most out of his opportunity when he gets it. 

Like most on here, I believe that he'll start the season down in Utica; create an even hungrier Virtanen to make it to the big show. If he's got drive along with his work ethic, and his set of tools, can't imagine what kind of player he'd become in the NHL. alas, players like him are seem to always be missing something - attitude, drive, work ethic, toolbox, etc, etc. He seems to have it all - with the exception of his attitude (dealings with media and Desjardins), question marks with respect to his work ethic and drive (last on to the ice, first off of it). I'm curious to see if any of those things have changed. 

 

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4 hours ago, N4ZZY said:

I'm hoping as well he will make the most out of his opportunity when he gets it. 

Like most on here, I believe that he'll start the season down in Utica; create an even hungrier Virtanen to make it to the big show. If he's got drive along with his work ethic, and his set of tools, can't imagine what kind of player he'd become in the NHL. alas, players like him are seem to always be missing something - attitude, drive, work ethic, toolbox, etc, etc. He seems to have it all - with the exception of his attitude (dealings with media and Desjardins), question marks with respect to his work ethic and drive (last on to the ice, first off of it). I'm curious to see if any of those things have changed. 

 

It seems according to Trevor, Jim and Travis, he has improved.  I thought that this was common knowledge.  All communications from the Canucks have been positive.  I think the Canucks are a lot higher on him than a lot of people on this list. :) I am choosing to believe that a kid with that much talent will be a good middle 6 forward (hopefully on left wing :)).  Now I don't know if he is going to make the team this year right a way but I am hoping he shows up and takes a spot.  He will shock everyone B).

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2 hours ago, dpn1 said:

It seems according to Trevor, Jim and Travis, he has improved.  I thought that this was common knowledge.  All communications from the Canucks have been positive.  I think the Canucks are a lot higher on him than a lot of people on this list. :) I am choosing to believe that a kid with that much talent will be a good middle 6 forward (hopefully on left wing :)).  Now I don't know if he is going to make the team this year right a way but I am hoping he shows up and takes a spot.  He will shock everyone B).

He's not going to shock me.  He's 30 pounds lighter, and finally (likely the first time for him) in proper shape.  He's going to look super fast!  

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