FanPost

Aleksander Barkov, the Most Likely Predators Pick

Liiga17_2_medium

via www.tappara.fi

Aleksander "Sasha" Barkov is a 6'2"-6'3" 205 pound center who is playing in the Swedish Elite League and has been since he was 16; he is the second youngest player to score in the World Juniors at 16 years old. He has put up great numbers with 21 goals and 25 assists in 49 games played.

This makes him the best, statistically speaking, player to come out of that league since Peter Forsberg. Now don't start expecting that much from him or think that I'm suggesting he's the next Peter Forsberg but he is definitely going to be a solid player in the NHL. Players who have put up at least an NHL 82 game point equivalency of 35 or higher (Barkov has a 41) have put up at least 50 points on average in the NHL.

His greatest tool in hand offensively is his hockey sense but he also has great hands, and good passing and puck handling. One of his major flaws is his skating, which is still above par but keeping him out of the top 2, but the same things were said by John Tavares. He also doesn't have an incredible shot but that will improve as he gains strength. As far as his skating goes, it has been said that he sees the game so well that he knows when to turn on the jets and when not to. He is said to make plays so quickly in that league that his own players can't keep up with him. He is able to use these same smarts and strength to keep the puck out of the net.

Overall we will get a great player in Barkov, if we draft him. He has the size and the ability to play in the NHL right away on the second or third line; if he continues to play at the same level he has been playing. He will bring size and offensive ability up the middle for Nashville.

Here are a few sites/videos where I have gotten my information from.

Comparing Barkov to Players in NHL from both SM Liiga and SEL

Comparing Barkov to Lindros

Top 60 Rankings

Youtube: Barkov's first SM Liiga Goals at 16

Youtube: TSN Midseason Draft Rankings

Elite Prospects Review

Youtube: Alexander Barkov # 16: Highlights 2012-2013 (full)

Youtube: Craig Button on Barkov (excellent review but sound is a little low)

Definitely the most informative information about Barkov. If you are at all interested in Nashville's possible first round draftee, this is the interview to listen to. If you've got some kind of speaker system it won't be a problem but don't try to listen to this with just you're computer speakers because the volume won't be high enough. This one's worth going through the trouble for.

Youtube: Forsberg-Style Goal

Youtube: Another Shootout Goal

This FanPost was written by an OTF reader, and does not represent the views of the editorial staff. Got something you'd like to share? <a href="http://www.sbnation.com/admin/entries/new?community_id=208&entry_type=FanPost" target="new">Post your own</a>!

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