Saturday, August 21, 2010

Grachev Not Ready Yet

Chris Proneman at Puck Prospectus talks with Alessandro Seren Rosso, a Russian prospect expert who writes for Russianprospect.com, about Evgeni Grachev and where he ranks when compared to other Russian prospects Alexander Avtsin (MTL) and Kirill Petrov (NYI)...

"I’m sorry to put Grachev at the bottom, but he deserves to stay there. He had a disappointing season in the AHL and it showed that he’s not ready yet. Maybe he should have stayed in Russia one year more even if he didn’t have a chance to play at Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, which was run by Coach Kari Heikkila, who is known for not playing youngsters. He also doesn’t have the same level of technique and skating of Avtsin and Petrov, even if he might have an edge in size."

...why would another year in Russia have helped? He showed he can play the North American game when he tore it up in Juniors. He just needed a year to adjust to the professional game and if he doesn't make the Rangers out of camp I expect a much better year from Grachev in Hartford.

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8 comments:

Matty said...

That quote just sounds like this guy is putting the kid down because he's palying here and not in Russia

Anonymous said...

Good. I like to see Rangers prospects struggling while Isles prospects work their way up the rankings and get closer to the NHL.

Rick said...

Agree Matty; I see the same slant. The kid Grachev is head and shoulders above both mentioned names. This is the talent scouting from Hockeys Future as of 12/09:Grachev is a top prospect with size, a physical presence and good hands. An above average skater with a pro shot and the ability to protect the puck, Grachev has transitioned from being a center to being a winger. Expected to be a power forward at the next level, Grachev will need to work on giving the team a consistent effort throughout the game, but ther eis no question that he has all the skills to be a top-six forward in the NHL.

theking said...

I am still going with my opinion that Grachev did so well in juniors because he was on average bigger than a lot of players. Now that he is in the AHL matched against men that are just as strong and big he is now struggling. He is not fast and he depended on his size in juniors. I bet you this is his last chance if he does not tremendously improve his game in the AHL this season he might never get a shot to play in the NHL. I would love to see him get a call up to the Rangers during the season but what would be the point if his AHL numbers are awful.

William said...

theking, that's a sobering analysis, but you're probably right. often i feel like a prospect's perceived potential is overblown within the fanbase and brass. that said, i was really impressed with what Grachev displayed in last year's preseason. more than just his size, his eye-hand and general offensive instincts were above-average. Mind you this was preseason, but still. I think they hold on to Grachev close even if he puts up less than point a game stuff this year in Hartford. depending on how the team is doing and the injury situation, he could get in a chance in the second half if his year is going well

Rick said...

They say that the jump from Jr to the AHL is alot larger than the jump from the AHL to the NHL per Shonny. Do I believe he is washed up at 20 because his transition didn't go as planned? No. So what if it takes two-three years in the AHL. Take just the 1st rounders in the 06 draft (5 yrs ago) and tell me how they are doing in the NHL and how long it took some of them to even make it. Every player except for E. Staal took their 1st yr not in NHL at the beginning. That list includes E Johnson, Toews, Backstrom, Kessell, Brassard, Okposo, Mueller, Sheppard & Frolik.
There are 13 players from the 30 in the 1st round that haven't even made the NHL w/ 3 of those bouncing back and forth NHL/AHL. Besides the top 10 that are in the NHL and the 13 that aren't- it took the other 7 players 2-4 yrs to make it.
My point is that it is way too early to give up on a 20 yr old kid- especially from the 3rd round. Whether he was a steal of not for a 3rd round pick.

theking said...

@Rick

Im not writing Grachev off or saying he is done. I am saying he has one hell of an uphill battle. I believe in time to develop but I also believe that a player either has or doesn't have what it takes. I hope Grachev turns out to be a solid 2nd or at least 3rd line wing. There is no way he will ever be a legit 1st line.

Rick said...

@The King: I guess it was just this sentence that sounded like you had already judged his future career. " I bet you this is his last chance if he does not tremendously improve his game in the AHL this season he might never get a shot to play in the NHL."
My mistake.