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The Growth of Swiss Hockey In The NHL

With last night being a sample size of how Naters, Switzerland product Nico Hischier robbed The Washington Capitals on a turnover for a Datsyukian goal last night. It didn’t take long for the 1st overall pick to showoff his skill set last night At The Prudential Center.

With the way Swiss Ice Hockey has grown over the years guys like Timo Meier and Roman Josi come to mind. In Nashville today reported by @mikemorrealeNHL that “Roman Josi named Predators captain today. Nico Hischier named Josi as the player he’s most looking forward to playing against.”- Mike Morreale (via Twitter)

After a franchise season for the Nashville Predators it does not surprise me as a hockey fan that a man like Roman who has the leadership skills, and the talent he is capable of using from what he used in The World Cup of Hockey for Team Europe. What fascinated me about Roman was his timely scoring, and strong defense on The Predators defense.

However I still feel a guy like Josi with the upside, and a GM in David Poile that I wouldn’t be surprised he gets more responsibilities on and off the ice as the captain. For the growth over in Switzerland having seen the progress of a non-traditional hockey market which emerged onto become something I called “the market awakener” during The World Juniors U-18.

Over the years many North American’s look at other countries as being “too soft.” When I examined Swiss U-18 hockey during last winter I saw a more up-tempo style of play and of course Hischier happened to be a product of that attack. When I saw team USA hold onto win 3-2 my mind was thinking “that Swiss team has some potential to eventually make noise.”

So when it comes to me as an American here in New Jersey I am always looking forward to seeing how the roots of guys like Josi, Meier, Hischier and other players came about. But I will definitely say for the upcoming U-18 World Juniors Tournaments come Christmas time I will be writing down notes on those players who I feel will make an impact in the draft.

Joseph Stanislau

Joe writes about the New Jersey Devils.

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