Jump to content
Jerzey

Hughes or Kakko

Hughes or Kakko?  

90 members have voted

  1. 1. Who should Shero pick?



Recommended Posts

49 minutes ago, Daniel said:

Analysis true.

 

Oh she’s absolutely right. Blashill is still a bad coach though. That’s an opinion I’ve held long before this tournament. You have Blashill and Bylsma on the same staff in Detroit.... I don’t know how Wings fans deal with that much stupidity. I’d need to be committed if those two idiots coached the Devils. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, MadDog2020 said:

Hughes still needs to gain his man strength. When he does, it will obviously make a huge difference. Kakko is further along in that regard, but everyone needs to remember: you aren’t drafting for today. You’re drafting for the player you’re going to have in five years. This is why a big picture outlook is so important. You can’t make these decisions based on just today.

 

4 hours ago, SterioDesign said:

I get all but that just OT displayed what im saying. Both players out there with plenty of ice and playing the same amount of minutes at top level. Hughes was knocked down quite easily and Kakko literally dominated, was pushed around and kept the puck, was really strong physically, showed great puck control and had good opportunities to score. 

I said it a million times Hughes is my pick. But if he's a player that keeps on being easily knocked off the puck and struggle when its getting physical in the playoffs well. Smaller, weaker NHL players can do well in the NHL now, its not like it use to. But bigger stronger body are still winning playoffs series. Every player Hughes outscored in the program were also bigger so their transition was easier. Keller is small though but he also struggled pretty bad last season.

So, I haven't chimed in on this debate in a week or so, partly because I don't have the time to post that I used to and partly because there isn't much that should change given one tournament; that and, well....there's no right answer.  So now I'll rant to make up for all the silence from me ya'll have been blessed with. To me, the most important thing that happens over the next few weeks is John Hynes takes the chance to get to know Jack Hughes, see how he responds to adversity, see how he works, see how he responds to coaching.

After watching more and more of Kakko's highlights (and WC games) I'm not sure the gap in vision and playmaking is as big as I thought it was. Also, Kakko is a manchild. He bodied Ryan Suter up against the boards near the end of the game today, and while the puck was on his stick too! I had to smile a little when I saw that, it was impressive.  Kakko was, in my view, the most dominant player on the ice for Finland today - maybe for any team with his six shots and pass that should have resulted in a goal. For a newly minted 18 year old who has zero NHL experience, that's pretty crazy. I also really respect his resilience in living with Celiac Disease and Diabetes and still becoming the player he has - that is not easy for anyone, let alone a growing athletic boy.

So then you probably are about to ask me, "so who's your guy Neb00rs?"

My answer: That would be Jack Hughes.

That kid is special. Right now he is being challenged for real for maybe the first time in his life. Yeah, he played with older kids his entire childhood, but not ones that were going to the NHL for the most part. Now all of a sudden, he's a 5'10 166 lb (give me a break, 150 lbs) boy going against men twice his size and strength. And he's not getting much ice time either. And despite being physically manhandled, a few times, he's doing just fine.

This kid looks special to me. Kakko has made a few great plays yeah, not just shots that proceed his big body barreling to the net either, but elite passes and impressive dangles. But Hughes has these little moments in between his running around on the ice trying too hard to prove something, that made me go, "yeah, that's next level...all by himself level." He made one pass out of the defensive zone today, in which there's no way he could have seen his receiving teammate coming unless he has eyes on the back of his head. Of course, if he does have eyes on the back of his head then he's a mutant, not someone with elite hockey sense, but I'm okay with drafting a mutant too. But that little pass, that was hardly noticeable because it was so smooth, was like a magnet from stick to stick. Perfect.

It's those little moments of skill, along with his determination out there, a pride that shows his character, even in the face of imminent death at the hands of giant ice skating Finnish Vikings, that show me that this kid is next level special. The next year or so is going to be filled with Kaapo Kakko scoring goal after goal, and impressing a lot of people as a rookie. And then, in my opinion, eventually Jack Hughes is going to figure it out, and when he does, it's going to be the Hughes show. 

There is of course many things that can happen and even if a player has a lot of potential it doesn't mean he is going to reach that potential, but Hughes seems like the type that when challenged, gets mad, and spends the extra hours, or as long as necessary, to figure it out and be the best - I gather this from the interviews he and his family have given.

And part of my standing by Hughes is, admittedly, less thought out, less skill-based. Simply, I like the kid. He seems like a Devil to me, it seems like it's meant to be that the Devils get this kid - the type of player we've never had. Btw, he's a Devil, that means he's my guy and don't fvck with him.

Of course, I don't need to be that sentimental here to defend this kid - let's not forget he just got done with one of, or maybe THE best amateur career in American hockey history. He's good, and yes, I couldn't care less how the rest of this tournament goes. If we judged every player by a single tournament or playoff, then Bryce Salvador is Erik Karlsson.

By the way, I also don't think that it's completely invalid to worry about Jack wanting to play with his brother. It seems to me that Hughes very much enjoys playing with his brother - this is a VERY close family. And I wouldn't assume that the Devils are going to be the one's to end up with both him and Quinn either. The Hughes family is a family that has grown up in the North American hockey world - they know the space. I've seen Jack, Jim, and Quinn Hughes all talk about how Vancouver is great because its a "hockey market." Jack is a kid, so there's no use grilling him about this now - he was barely just potty trained - but Ray should keep it in mind.

But yeah, you can't control the uncontrollables (that's probably not a noun but go fvck yourselves grammar Nazis). Sure, the idea is to get your #1 overall pick to stay for 15-20 years but...this is not something you make your draft pick based on, unless he tells you directly he's walking away as soon as he gets the chance. Keep in mind, Hughes wanting to play with his brother, is the sign of a good, sane person. If he preferred Vancouver, it wouldn't even really be that wrong - Vancouver is indeed a great place to play hockey and honestly, is the nicest city I've ever been to. But we gotta have a little faith - that he'll become a true Devil, you can't expect to control for everything down the line. And who knows Kakko could get one wiff of the stench of MSG (or he might just not be morally okay with the fact that his GM is the bad guy from Kindergarten Cop) and count down the days until he can bolt for an American city more like his quaint coastal city home of Turku, Finland where it takes more than thirty career points to get your jersey retired. From money to location to winning, there's a million reasons a player could bolt to another team aside from having a brother in the league. But as I said, it's a valid concern Jack could bolt for his bro. We'll deal with that down the line.

So yeah, for what my opinion is worth, which obviously isn't much, if you ask me three weeks from now who I think the Devils should draft, it'll be the same* as my answer today and three weeks ago: the skinny half-Jewish hockey phenom, Jacky Hughes, second of his name in the NHL.

*If something absolutely crazy comes out in the next few weeks, like that the Hughes family eats people, I reserve the right to change my mind. Not sure I even would in that case though. Kid needs all the protein he can get.

 

  • Like 7
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Neb00rs said:

 

So, I haven't chimed in on this debate in a week or so, partly because I don't have the time to post that I used to and partly because there isn't much that should change given one tournament; that and, well....there's no right answer.  So now I'll rant to make up for all the silence from me ya'll have been blessed with. To me, the most important thing that happens over the next few weeks is John Hynes takes the chance to get to know Jack Hughes, see how he responds to adversity, see how he works, see how he responds to coaching.

After watching more and more of Kakko's highlights (and WC games) I'm not sure the gap in vision and playmaking is as big as I thought it was. Also, Kakko is a manchild. He bodied Ryan Suter up against the boards near the end of the game today, and while the puck was on his stick too! I had to smile a little when I saw that, it was impressive.  Kakko was, in my view, the most dominant player on the ice for Finland today - maybe for any team with his six shots and pass that should have resulted in a goal. For a newly minted 18 year old who has zero NHL experience, that's pretty crazy. I also really respect his resilience in living with Celiac Disease and Diabetes and still becoming the player he has - that is not easy for anyone, let alone a growing athletic boy.

So then you probably are about to ask me, "so who's your guy Neb00rs?"

My answer: That would be Jack Hughes.

That kid is special. Right now he is being challenged for real for maybe the first time in his life. Yeah, he played with older kids his entire childhood, but not ones that were going to the NHL for the most part. Now all of a sudden, he's a 5'10 166 lb (give me a break, 150 lbs) boy going against men twice his size and strength. And he's not getting much ice time either. And despite being physically manhandled, a few times, he's doing just fine.

This kid looks special to me. Kakko has made a few great plays yeah, not just shots that proceed his big body barreling to the net either, but elite passes and impressive dangles. But Hughes has these little moments in between his running around on the ice trying too hard to prove something, that made me go, "yeah, that's next level...all by himself level." He made one pass out of the defensive zone today, in which there's no way he could have seen his receiving teammate coming unless he has eyes on the back of his head. Of course, if he does have eyes on the back of his head then he's a mutant, not someone with elite hockey sense, but I'm okay with drafting a mutant too. But that little pass, that was hardly noticeable because it was so smooth, was like a magnet from stick to stick. Perfect.

It's those little moments of skill, along with his determination out there, a pride that shows his character, even in the face of imminent death at the hands of giant ice skating Finnish Vikings, that show me that this kid is next level special. The next year or so is going to be filled with Kaapo Kakko scoring goal after goal, and impressing a lot of people as a rookie. And then, in my opinion, eventually Jack Hughes is going to figure it out, and when he does, it's going to be the Hughes show. 

There is of course many things that can happen and even if a player has a lot of potential it doesn't mean he is going to reach that potential, but Hughes seems like the type that when challenged, gets mad, and spends the extra hours, or as long as necessary, to figure it out and be the best - I gather this from the interviews he and his family have given.

And part of my standing by Hughes is, admittedly, less thought out, less skill-based. Simply, I like the kid. He seems like a Devil to me, it seems like it's meant to be that the Devils get this kid - the type of player we've never had. Btw, he's a Devil, that means he's my guy and don't fvck with him.

Of course, I don't need to be that sentimental here to defend this kid - let's not forget he just got done with one of, or maybe THE best amateur career in American hockey history. He's good, and yes, I couldn't care less how the rest of this tournament goes. If we judged every player by a single tournament or playoff, then Bryce Salvador is Erik Karlsson.

By the way, I also don't think that it's completely invalid to worry about Jack wanting to play with his brother. It seems to me that Hughes very much enjoys playing with his brother - this is a VERY close family. And I wouldn't assume that the Devils are going to be the one's to end up with both him and Quinn either. The Hughes family is a family that has grown up in the North American hockey world - they know the space. I've seen Jack, Jim, and Quinn Hughes all talk about how Vancouver is great because its a "hockey market." Jack is a kid, so there's no use grilling him about this now - he was barely just potty trained - but Ray should keep it in mind.

But yeah, you can't control the uncontrollables (that's probably not a noun but go fvck yourselves grammar Nazis). Sure, the idea is to get your #1 overall pick to stay for 15-20 years but...this is not something you make your draft pick based on, unless he tells you directly he's walking away as soon as he gets the chance. Keep in mind, Hughes wanting to play with his brother, is the sign of a good, sane person. If he preferred Vancouver, it wouldn't even really be that wrong - Vancouver is indeed a great place to play hockey and honestly, is the nicest city I've ever been to. But we gotta have a little faith - that he'll become a true Devil, you can't expect to control for everything down the line. And who knows Kakko could get one wiff of the stench of MSG (or he might just not be morally okay with the fact that his GM is the bad guy from Kindergarten Cop) and count down the days until he can bolt for an American city more like his quaint coastal city home of Turku, Finland where it takes more than thirty career points to get your jersey retired. From money to location to winning, there's a million reasons a player could bolt to another team aside from having a brother in the league. But as I said, it's a valid concern Jack could bolt for his bro. We'll deal with that down the line.

So yeah, for what my opinion is worth, which obviously isn't much, if you ask me three weeks from now who I think the Devils should draft, it'll be the same* as my answer today and three weeks ago: the skinny half-Jewish hockey phenom, Jacky Hughes, second of his name in the NHL.

*If something absolutely crazy comes out in the next few weeks, like that the Hughes family eats people, I reserve the right to change my mind. Not sure I even would in that case though. Kid needs all the protein he can get.

 

That last tiny comment, though :

spacer.png

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, mfitz804 said:

I’d be ok with a cannibal if he’s got the talent. 

Jack is not old enough to drink chianti while eating a liver with fava beans though

  • Like 3
  • Haha 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, SterioDesign said:

Jack is not old enough to drink chianti while eating a liver with fava beans though

He can have chocolate milk. 

  • Haha 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I pretty much trusted Shero and didn’t really have a preference between Patrick and Hischier at the time.   I don’t have a great explanation why this time it’s different but I really want the devils to take Hughes.   The skill package just seems to insane not to take.  

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I believe strongly that Kappo Kakko will be better in 2019. Maybe even in 2020. 

But Jack Hughes is almost definitely going to be the better player over his career. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
26 minutes ago, MB3 said:

I believe strongly that Kappo Kakko will be better in 2019. Maybe even in 2020. 

But Jack Hughes is almost definitely going to be the better player over his career. 

Yep. And that’s why you take Hughes and don’t look back.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, MadDog2020 said:

Yep. And that’s why you take Hughes and don’t look back.

The first part will happen. The second part will not, good or bad. 

  • Thanks 1
  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, MB3 said:

I believe strongly that Kappo Kakko will be better in 2019. Maybe even in 2020. 

But Jack Hughes is almost definitely going to be the better player over his career. 

And it'll make Rangers fans absolutely unbearable for those two seasons.

That said, it ultimately doesn't matter if the second half of your comment ends up being true.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, DJ Eco said:

But it is fairly black and white on a few levels. I've watched every shift of his since the U18 tournament. The amount of opportunities he creates out of nothing is unbelievable, the distances he skates every game is amazing. I watched U18 linemate after linemate (including Cole Caufield) miss empty nets, miss beautiful chances he put on their stick, squanded 50% of the opportunities he creates. Caufield could've finished with double the amount of goals in reality haha.. He missed so many Hughes-created opportunities.

Been watching the USA men's games and his linemates have missed a ton of chances as well; JVR or Keller fumbling a beautiful cross-ice pass, when they could've one-timed it, is a recurring thread. If they put Hughes with DeBrincat and Vatrano, he'd have 5+ assists by now and probably a goal or two. 

That being said, he's still only 17, he's still young enough to be required to have to wear a visor haha.. they're not going to just give him Eichel's or Larkin's spot, they're not in the tournament to see what Jack Hughes is made of, they're there to win; so we should accept that he's not going to be perfectly utilized or have the kind of big stage opportunity Kaapo is being given on a team full of scrubs.

Agreed.  While this is not the US's A-squad like you would have in the Olympics, this team would likely win the President's Trophy if it competed in an NHL season.  Finland?  Do they even have any NHL'ers on their team?  Much more difficult for Hughes to get the ice-time that Kakko is getting with Finland.  I have always been led to believe the U-18's are really the tournament the scouts and GM's taking seriously for the upcoming drafts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Devilsfan118 said:

And it'll make Rangers fans absolutely unbearable for those two seasons.

That’s not accurate. 

Rangers fans are always absolutely unbearable regardless. 

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am fully on team Hughes, but if the Devils decided to go with Kakko on draft day over Hughes, I will not be shedding any tears.  I do think the talent gap between the two is very close and both are on a higher level than Nico and Nolan were in 2017.  I am mostly on team Hughes because I do think his ceiling is higher and getting elite centers are far harder than getting an elite winger.  I know Kakko is listed that he can play center as well, but he plays better on the wing.

Regardless, the Devils will be getting an awesome player either way.  This is a good problem to have.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I also doubt this tournament changes many scouts or GM's minds in terms of rankings.  How many times have players had great runs in a tournament but then have pedestrian stats otherwise?  I am not saying that happens to Kakko, but a tournament is way too small of a sample size to make any long-term evaluations for better or worse.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, DevsMan84 said:

I also doubt this tournament changes many scouts or GM's minds in terms of rankings.  How many times have players had great runs in a tournament but then have pedestrian stats otherwise?  I am not saying that happens to Kakko, but a tournament is way too small of a sample size to make any long-term evaluations for better or worse.

Agreed. I am assuming that unlike most of us, the scouting department was already fully familiar with both guys. This tournament has placed Kakko under a microscope because he's playing more and doing more. As I mentioned previously, nobody on Team USA was looking to make this a Jack Hughes showcase, he's an amateur on a team stacked with NHLers. He wasn't going to be, and shouldn't be, getting a ton of ice time. 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
43 minutes ago, MadDog2020 said:

 

One last smile with a full set of teeth.

  • Haha 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, mfitz804 said:

Agreed. I am assuming that unlike most of us, the scouting department was already fully familiar with both guys. This tournament has placed Kakko under a microscope because he's playing more and doing more. As I mentioned previously, nobody on Team USA was looking to make this a Jack Hughes showcase, he's an amateur on a team stacked with NHLers. He wasn't going to be, and shouldn't be, getting a ton of ice time. 

Yeah, it was an awesome honor that a not-even 18-year-old was even asked to play with men and NHL vets to begin with.  He definitely wasn't going to be gifted with ice time by default, due to his lofty prospect status.  And I'm OK with that, not just because he can learn a little simply by being a part of things, but also because a kid his size could easily get injured, given his current build.  Kid obviously will fill out and bulk up a little as he gets older, but that ain't happenin' overnight.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
39 minutes ago, Colorado Rockies 1976 said:

Yeah, it was an awesome honor that a not-even 18-year-old was even asked to play with men and NHL vets to begin with.  He definitely wasn't going to be gifted with ice time by default, due to his lofty prospect status.  And I'm OK with that, not just because he can learn a little simply by being a part of things, but also because a kid his size could easily get injured, given his current build.  Kid obviously will fill out and bulk up a little as he gets older, but that ain't happenin' overnight.

By October?

lol

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.