One Russian Prevails

{Courtesy of WindsorStar.com}

Earlier this year, Stanislav Galiev and Maxim Kitsyn both went to the Russian World Junior Championship camp to hopefully get a spot on the national team.  Galiev was snubbed while Kitsyn would go on to make the team that would win gold at the tournament in Buffalo.  Then halfway through the OHL season, Kitsyn hopped on a plane and took his game to the CHL with Mississauga.

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Caps Prospects Taking Different Routes to NHL

(Courtesy of Russian Machine Never Breaks)

In this past summer’s NHL entry draft, the Washington Capitals went Russian with their first two draft picks. Their first of choice of the day saw them select Evgeny Kuznetsov (1st round/26th overall) and then with their next pick they went with Stanislav Galiev (3rd round/86th overall).   The two are very different players and are taking different paths to get to the NHL to help prepare them to make the jump.

Evgeny Kuznetsov became the 7th Russian player the Capitals drafted in the first three rounds of the last seven NHL drafts and it’s easy to see why.  The left handed right winger fits into the same mold as his future Capital teammate, Alex Ovechkin.  He’s extremely gifted offensively and not afraid of physical play but can struggle when asked to play defense.  Kuznetsov has also represented Russia on the international stage as a 17 year old playing in U-18 and U-20 World Junior tournaments, including being named to the WJC all-star team in the U-18 tournament.
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