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May 5, 2021
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<div class="quote"><div class="quote_t">Quoting: <b>Caerii</b></div><div>That tournament means nothing. He may not have been playing great competition, but he also didn't have any support from his own team. He's not a player who takes over games like Kaprizov was, or like a McDavid type player. He's very cerebral, very skilled, and he's far more effective at playing his game when others on his line are the same. He plays off his linemates, he's not a one man show. He'll have a chance to show that in camp and the pre-season, and he might get a few NHL games as well, like any normal prospect might. That will be what determines whether he makes it or not. Not any Olympic qualifier games.</div></div>
I agree that the Olympic qualifier games have absolutely no bearing on his status with the Wild and nor should they, but it’s the only recent barometer I have on which to gauge his level of play. That’s where the majority of my opinion is coming from in that comment.
This is a case where I’d be happy to eat my words, but I only caught that game of the tournament, and I didn’t see enough to convince me he’s ready for the NHL. Even if that’s a terrible environment to go off of, and even if his style of play doesn’t standout in that setting, I still just didn’t see an NHL ready caliber player.
Training camp will be much more telling, but as of today with the info on hand and my judgement of it, I personally don’t see him starting opening night.
<div class="quote"><div class="quote_t">Quoting: <b>tryger</b></div><div>The ACGM above indicated that the Kings have several C prospects and can afford to spread the wealth. I disagree with this point.
First, if the return for these graduated prospects are picks or ungraduated prospects, isn't this a step backwards for a team wishing to exit a rebuild?
Second, of their top tier center prospects, only one is a full-time NHLer, to date, Vilardi is the only graduate from the tier of top-6 potential centers (Byfield, Turcotte, Kupari) to make the NHL full time. So the Kings do not have the luxury to say they have 4 established NHLers who could be top-6 centers . It should be noted two seasons back VIlardi was injured and likely wouldn't even have returned a second-round pick. However, his value is starting to grow, and will likely continue with him playing 3C against much easier competition than he had to handle as the 2C the year prior.
So as noted above, once Byfield (or Turcotte/Kupari) establishes themselves as the 3C it is possible Vilardi could be moved but not until then. But it's more likely the Kings see what they have in Vilardi on the wing before they do this. The Kings have actively been trying this with Turcotte and Kupari in the AHL.
Third, you need to understand what the Kings areas of need are, with their prospect pool filled they are missing a top-line winger and a top-pair defenseman, very few teams have this and are willing to trade this. Until that team presents themselves the Kings are fine standing pat.
The Kings have carefully built this prospect pool, and yes eventually, trades will be made but not until these players get shots in the NHL (specifically their top-tier centers). It is almost guaranteed Kupari, Byfield, Turcotte, and Vilardi are NHLers and will play for the Kings at some point this season or next. If all four thrive at the center position (unlikely) the Kings will then entertain trades but there is no reason for them to act prematurely because other teams want centers right now.</div></div>
I don’t think the Kings should be moving Vilardi until at least next summer, unless of course there’s a ridiculous offer. But assuming not, I would agree that they should keep him for now.
I was simply just responding to your comment over not agreeing or understanding the argument that “because we have a surplus of X, we should be trading.” And my point was that it entirely depends on the circumstances. Just because you CAN reallocate a player doesn’t mean it’s always the best move.
Put this armchair GM aside and even the Kings for that matter. If a team is deep at a highly sought after position, it can sometimes be more fruitful to trade vs re-allocate due to the relative values.
I think we probably agree here, and I wasn’t trying to be nitpicky, i was just trying to clarify that if you move Vilardi to wing you’re effectively valuing his deployment in that position more than whatever return he’d yield. And that’s a particularly important distinction because a top 6 wing is easier to backfill than a top 6 C.