Thursday, December 23, 2010

WJC Players to Watch: Lars Volden

The other half of Norway's keys to success in this tournament comes from Lars Volden, the team's star goalie and a prospect who I thought should have been taken in the 2010 CHL Import Draft.

Here is what I wrote about Volden in June:
Volden is definitely a prospect worth keeping an eye on as goalies tend to take longer to develop. He has solid size at 6'3" and 190 lbs., but is a relative unknown considering he split the '09-'10 season in Norway's first and second mens' leagues. Lars had awesome numbers with Norway at the D1 WJCs, posting a 1.47 goals against average and .958 save percentage for the powerhouse team. His numbers were far less impressive during the D1 U18s, but he was named the tournament's best goalie so he couldn't have been too bad.

Volden has decided to sign with the Finnish U20 league where he will play for Blues and hopes to be picked in the 2011 NHL draft. Definitely not a bad idea considering how raw of a talent he is, but I am still shocked that nobody in the CHL would want to roll the dice with Volden.
As I mentioned there, Volden was a stud for Norway last year so I'm sure they are expecting much of the same on the bigger stage. Since my last post, Volden has, in fact, made the move to the Blues' U20 team where he has played the majority of the team's games. Volden sports a 2.68 GAA with a .912 SV% - numbers good enough for 5th and 7th in the league, respectively.

Realistically, this is Volden's shot at getting drafted at the NHL-level. If he can perform well enough to attract the attention of some scouts, Volden has the size and potential to make a team willing to roll the dice on him.

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