Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Quick Thoughts: Michal Kempny is Getting Hammered in the Czech Media for No Reason
After having read a few questionable articles concerning Michal Kempny's play, I decided to express a few thoughts. It amazes me how stupid questions Czech reporters are able to ask. ''Should have Kempny played in the OT in the first place?''. They are asking all the wrong questions.
Michal Kempny is the only decent puck-mover on the Czech blueline. He's the only one capable of skating and staying with those Canadians, Swedes and so on. He's the only one standing any kind of chance to become a top-4 defenseman at the NHL level one day. Is he perfect? Absolutely not. Did he make a mistake that directly led to a 3:0 Canadian lead? Yes, he did. That's not the point, really. I don't care about that mistake, honestly. Actually, I don't blame Kempny at all. As suggested above, he's the only d-man capable of producing any kind of offense. Trailing 2:0, there wasn't much of a risk involved either. In order to beat Canada, or at least give yourself a chance, you need to make a lot of smart plays, you need to catch the opposition off guard. That's what Kempny was trying to do. The only thing I would be questioning is what exactly Kempny was trying to accomplish with approximately 7 seconds left on the clock...
Our eyes and brain tend to overreact to ''huge mistakes''. At the same time, people aren't even aware of the subtle things one does for the rest of the night. And Kempny does a lot of things right.
Kempny definitely held his own against Canada. He has seen the most of Doughty, Tavares, among others. Prior to the World Cup, I thought he was stellar given his role and expectations. On some nights, Kempny logged as much as 25 minutes a night in all situations while getting all the tough assignments. And he didn't look out of place.
Keep in mind that Kempny has yet to play an NHL game and is already asked to compete against the world's best and be pretty much a leader out there. That's a hell of a task even for better and more experienced blueliners.
''Can he make it?'' is a poll on idnes.cz asking whether Kempny will be able to become an NHL player or not. I honestly think it's a disgrace to the player who is being judged after only 2 games against hockey superstars. It's an extremely small sample size. Additionally, the author completely ignores all the facts (role, matchups...) and what Kempny had been able to accomplish from a long-term point of view. The result of the poll is quite astonishing, too. Almost half of the voters haven't expressed much faith in Kempny. Right, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. However, I'm pretty sure most of the voters based their opinions on those 2 games and mistakes Kempny made.
And you keep wondering why the Czechs don't have any quality blueliners. As usual, you got it all wrong.