Pick any undrafted center with at least one point at the World’s and viola!! Instant Janrkrok upgrade. Calle’s currently packing a whopping 0G 0A in 7 GP.
It's trendy to trash Jarnkrok, even trendier than it is to call him the next Gretzky (which, while I get the hyperbole, no one's come close to doing). All players struggle. Nyquist struggled this season, and then he exploded, and then he disappeared completely. Z's had his struggles. Datsyuk's had his struggles. Tatar had his struggles this season.
Bottom line: Elias Lindholm's Late Cousin (RIP) is gonna be a Realgud good player in this league (or in Sweden) for a long time, while David Legwand's probably played his last game as a Wing. And Patrick Eaves will score 75 goals next season playing on Crosby's wing. And that second-round pick we gave up will be the next Lidstrom, because of course it will. If anyone should be mocked for all that, well, it's not Jarnkrok.
But but he's the next gretzky. Seriously though, I think we are currently ok at center, and if mantha puts on 15-20 pounds this summer and we can pick up camel or moulson, I think we are ok in the wing too.
I want to see us get bigger and stronger on the wing. I want to see us work the boards and corners more effectively and such. Hence a guy like Wilson or Smith-Pelly (though, they're not really prospects anymore. Though, that doesn't really matter.) Mantha's big, but I see him becoming something along the lines of a Thomas Vanek - a sniper and a playmaker and maybe even a screener and maybe he even throws his weight around here and there when he's Feeling It, but probably not the most physically imposing sonsabitch to ever lace up a pair of skates.
In a perfect world, Bigger Stronger Guy would also be a righty. Hence, again, Wilson or Smith-Pelly.
"Yeah, we get it, you like Wilson and Smith-Pelly. We heard you the first several hundred times, bro. Problem is, we can't just become the Bruins overnight. If it were that easy, more teams would be built like that."
It's not that I want to see us go all Boston Strong or whatever they're euphemistically calling it these days. We're just very cuddly and vanilla. It's an honest-to-Goc fact. And it'd be fine, if we could kill with skill like we've done for the past couple decades, or even just push back when necessary (see: the Habs). Then I might be totes down with adding Pulkkinen to an already diminutive top six that didn't exactly set the world on fire in our one-win postseason run.
Skill and scoring prowess is all-important, while size and strength and physicality only get you so far. But we have the former and need to supplement it with the latter. In this way, we'd be a more well-rounded team. I like teams that can play any way the opposition wants to play. That, I think, is the new school.
The good thing is, we've drafted really damn well re: our future blue line. We clearly saw that today's top-four defenseman is big and mobile and good with the puck, and we drafted accordingly. Now we have to shift our focus to the forward corps, specifically the future top six or nine. There needs to be size there. I'm not saying take a pugilist over Nikolaj Ehlers. You know what I'm saying.