By JD Lagrange – It is natural for human beings to make comparisons. Whether it’s for certain situations, or comparing people, our natural instinct is often to relate what’s around us to what we are more familiar with.
This explains why, in hockey terms, we often see young prospects being compared to past or current players. It doesn’t mean that the young player is or will become the veteran he’s being compared to. But in his style, role or demeanour, there are traits that remind us of others.
I was thinking about Jordan Harris the other day and he reminded me of an ancien Canadiens’ defenseman. But then I thought to myself that there are a few more who bring back memories as well. So I’ve decided to put them down, black on white, and share those thoughts with you, readers.
Not overly big, can get pushed around by bigger forwards at times. He’s a good skater, often makes the right play and flies under the radar most nights. He’s not as good of a shot blocker, but Harris reminds me a lot of Josh Gorges.
He’s running a hot streak right now and an article I wrote prior to the season’s start seems to become quite valid. Not overly physical, often underestimated, even “forgotten” by fans and even media members, Barron is turning, style-wise, into Patrice Brisebois. Good play for the most part, puts up some numbers, but subject to the odd brain cramp from time to time. Here’s hoping that Habs’ fans don’t turn on him the way some of them did on Brisebois.
There have been plenty of attempted comparisons with Slafkovsky. At first, I thought of Robert Lang. A big forward, not overly physical but who uses his body well. But then, Slaf turned on the physicality from time to time. So now, I see more of a John LeClair, prior to him being traded to Philadelphia, when he was just starting to show signs of greatness. Decent skater, big body, some offensive flair, taking the body without necessarily putting anyone through a board…
If you follow me on social media or read my articles on this site, you won’t be surprised at all with this one. I wrote about it before in details, but I’ve seen he and Shea Weber play junior and I’m seeing the start of Guhle’s career. Personality, calmness, professionalism, low-key, he is a mini-Weber. The former Predators and Habs’ captain had a harder shot and was more intimidating physically, but Guhle is a better skater. All other aspects, however, are very much comparable.
I’ve seen people compare WiFi to Sheldon Souray. I don’t see it, as Shelley was a lot more offensive-minded. Some compared him to Lyle Odelein. I kind of like that one although I feel Arber has more offense in him. I kind of like the Ben Chiarot comparison, but it’s not perfect. I have to go outside the Canadiens’ organization to find the closest fit, in my humble opinion. Remember Marty McSorley? Tough as nail, decent skater for his size (and role), he can put up some points and okay defensively.
A lot of people would like to say Martin St-Louis as a comparison to Caufield. I don’t see that. Instead, I’m reminded of a smaller winger who spent his entire career in the Western Conference. That’s right, I see some Paul Kariya in Caufield. Definitely not the physical type, good skater, shiftier than we’re giving him credit for, also better passer than we believe.
Truthfully, I’m still struggling to find a comparable for Suzuki. Some, including Jonathan Drouin, saw Patrice Bergeron. While I see why they would say that, I don’t know that he will reach Bergeron’s status. Right now (and that can change), I’m seeing more of a Kirk Muller or Ryan Walter. Quality player, leader, doing the little things right, put up points although not Elite.
So, what do YOU think? Are the above-mentioned players reminding you of someone else? Do you have other current players you like to compare to those of the past? Let us know in the comments.