#49 – Alexei Toropchenko, LW – MVD Balashikha, MHL

Central Scouting – #21 ES
ISS – #105
Future Considerations – #220
McKeens – #73
Craig Button – N/A
Hockey Prospect – #54


COMPARABLE : Rielly Smith
UPSIDE : Top-6 Offensive Winger


I was very impressed with Toropchenko’s game at the U18 tournament. I thought he was probably Russia’s best overall player on the team that ended up with the Bronze medal. I like the package of what Toropchenko brings to the ice. He’s a tall, lanky player with great wheels and a good shot. He’s an excellent playmaker and sees the ice very well. From the viewings I had, he has a strong work ethic and competes hard. He gives an even effort every shift and that goes a long way, well at least for me. This is a player who powers through checks and gives a noticeable second effort.

I think this is a player that compares well to a guy like Riley Smith…size-wise and perhaps skating-wise as well. I think Toropchenko is probably a bit more skilled and has better puck control. That’s a real glowing review for him and I really like this player a lot…now here come the questions marks : is this the type of player that will be happy with spending some time in the AHL to develop and bide his time until he gets a shot at the NHL? In short – the Russian Factor. If the answer is yes, then I think teams should feel pretty good about taking this guy in the late 2nd or 3rd round. If the answer is “it doesn’t look good” then perhaps taking a late round flyer isn’t the worst idea in the world…take a gamble that he might develop and then sign him out of the KHL at age 22-23.

Another one of my favourites who isn’t getting much press or hype at all. A real sleeper pick.



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