What characteristics affect NHL readiness?
Prior to the NHL draft, several top prospects were made available to the media for interviews. And one of the first things I noticed was the difference between two top prospects who sat near each other -- Gabriel Landeskog and Jonathan Huberdeau.
Landeskog (No. 2, Colorado Avalanche) looked like a man who was ready to step into the NHL next season -- and he likely will. It wasn't just the size, although being 6-foot-1, 207 pounds doesn't hurt. He also carried himself like he was an NHLer even before he was drafted. Meanwhile, Huberdeau (No. 3, Florida Panthers) -- at 6-1, 168 -- looked like someone who was going to rush back to a cotton candy stand right after the interview session.
In this instance, the visual indications are correct: Landeskog will contribute more quickly than Huberdeau. But these generalizations of readiness are often incorrect -- or often overplayed based on erroneous factors. For example, when it comes to size, it isn't a great predictor of when a kid will reach the NHL.
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