At 129th overall, the New Jersey Devils selected left wing Arseni Gritsyuk from the Avangard Omsk system. He has a lot of junior experience in Russia for Omskie Yastreby and for Russia in international competition. Let’s learn a little bit more about the player.
Who is Arseni Gritsyuk?
According to his EliteProspects profile, Arseni Gritsyuk is a 5’10, 168 lbs. left wing from Russia. He was born on March 15, 2001 and has been rising up through the Avangard Omsk system. This past season he put up 12 goals and 9 assists in 30 regular season games in the MHL, the Russian junior league. He averaged 2.6 shots per game and 15:35 in ice time per game during the regular season. In the playoffs he averaged 3.4 shots per game and 16:34 in ice time.
He also played for Russia’s U18 at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup where he had 2 goals and an assist in 5 games as they won a Bronze Medal. He helped the Russian U18 team win a Silver Medal at the World Championships by putting up 3 goals and 2 assists in 7 games. Let’s see what others had to say about the prospect.
What Others Say About Arseni Gritsyuk
Here is what Bill Placzek had to say on Draft Site about Gritsyuk:
Elusive and tight edged little left winger with speed and top end stick handling savvy while at top gear. Slippery with tight spins and quick stop/starts. Doesn’t allow defenders to corral him, and persists after absorbing big hit. Out-hustles defenders to loose pucks in the offensive zone, and will come into to a scrum as the odd man and stays on the periphery to steal the biscuit as it tickles out. Dangerous off the rush and can beat defenders one on one. Displays a short stick handle in tight space and will stutter step the goalie before taking the shot. His quick stop/starts while carrying the puck help him create separation. Gets a ton of chances for his line and himself with his high energy and effort and is fearless in the greasy areas.
His EliteProspects profile has this blurb from McKeen’s Hockey:
He gets to his top speed easily and quickly and has a knack for creating separation between himself and defenders, McKeen’s Hockey 2019
Bill Metlzer for the Flyer’s website had this on Gritsyuk prior to Day 2:
Russia’s answer to pint-sized American goal-scoring machine Cole Caufield, the small but highly skilled Russian winger has torn up the U-17 and MHL levels with his ability score off the rush or hide out from the defense and materialize in prime scoring position to receive a pass and put the puck in the net. Carrying less than 170 pounds on his small frame and with a need to improve various aspects of his game without the puck, Gritsyuk is a boom-or-bust candidate who is likely to be chosen outside the first round.
I highly recommend checking out Scouching’s scouting report video on Gritsyuk:
My Initial Reaction of the Pick
I like this pick and I am cautiously optimistic about it turning out well based on my initial findings. I found it interesting that Hockey Prospect ranked him 57th and McKeen’s Hockey ranked him 48th. Gritsyuk seems to possess the skill that could lead him to having some solid upside from an offensive standpoint. It appears that this could be a great value pick for the Devils, getting a 2nd or 3rd round talent in the 5th round. I’ll have more info in this post later but so far I am happy about this selection.
Update: I don’t know if I’d go as far as saying I love this pick, but I’m right on that line. I think the Devils got tremendous value getting a player with this type of upside at 129th overall. Gritsyuk seems to already play a North American game and shouldn’t have too much trouble adjusting to the smaller rink. With his skating, tenacity, and puck skills, I’d like to see him make the jump over here sooner than later. I think a move to a CHL team via the Import Draft would be a good decision for Gritsyuk so he can further develop his game.
As we update this post with more information later today, please have your say about person in the comments. Are you satisfied with this selection? What are your expectations for this prospect? Leave your comments below and thank you for reading!
The Devils drafted Gritsyuk at 129th Overall. What do you think of the pick?
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