December 14, 2021

Michkov, Askarov front Russia’s entry at 2022 World Juniors

Matvei Michkov, the potential No. 1 pick in the 2023 NHL Draft, is among the prospects set to represent Russia at the 2022 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Michkov enters the World Juniors with a history of international hockey accolades that includes the 2021 IIHF World Under-18 Championship, where he raked up an impressive 16 points (12 goals, four assists) in only seven games as a 16-year-old. He left the tournament with the MVP and Best Forward awards, plus the tournament’s most goals and points. 

Michkov currently plays in the KHL, arguably the second best league outside of the NHL. Although just turning 17 on December 9, he has five points (two goals, three assists) in 13 games. 

He is joined on Russia’s entry byYaroslav Askarov, arguably the best goaltender prospect in the world. The first-round selection (No. 11) in the 2020 NHL Draft of the Nashville Predators was nominated as the Top-3 Player on Russia’s club at last year’s tournament after posting a 2.50 goals-against average and .914 save percentage in six games.

The 2022 World Juniors will be the last time Askarov will get a chance to bring home a gold for Russia. He has a silver medal from the 2020 tournament.

Russia has plenty of draft pedigree up front participating in the tournament.

Danila Yurov, a projected top-five pick in the 2022 NHL Draft, will be a focal point, as will Fyodor Svechkov and Nikita Chibrikov. Svechkov was the No. 19 pick in the 2021 NHL Draft of the Predators, and Chibrikov was selected in the second round (No. 50) in 2021 by the Winnipeg Jets.

The big question regarding Russia will be their defensive group.

Only one player, Shakir Mukhamadullin, was selected in the first round of the NHL Draft. He was selected with the No. 20 pick in the 2020 NHL Draft by the New Jersey Devils.

Here’s a rundown of Russia’s roster for the World Juniors:

G Yaroslav Askarov 6’4″ 176 SKA St. Petersburg KHL Nashville Predators 2020 1 11
G Yegor Guskov 5’11” 201 Loko Yaroslavl MHL 2022
G Maxim Motorygin 6’0″ 165 CSK VVS Samara VHL 2022
D Vladimir Grudinin 5’10” 177 CSKA Moskva KHL 2022
D Kirill Kirsanov 6’1″ 198 SKA St. Petersburg KHL Los Angeles Kings 2021 3 84
D Arseni Koromyslov 6’3″ 181 SKA-1946 MHL 2022
D Shakir Mukhamadullin 6’2″ 170 Salavat Yulaev KHL New Jersey Devils 2020 1 20
D Nikita Novikov 6’4″ 207 Dynamo Moskva KHL Buffalo Sabres 2021 6 188
D Yegor Savikov 5’10” 163 Spartak Moskva KHL 2022
D Nikita Smirnov 6’0″ 172 SKA -1946 MHL 2022
D Kirill Steklov 6’4″ 190 Russkie Vityazi MHL 2022
F Nikita Chibrikov 5’10” 172 SKA-1946 MHL Winnipeg Jets 2021 2 50
F Semyon Demidov 5’10” 174 Russkie Vityazi MHL 2022
F Ivan Didkovsky 5’10” 185 MHK Dynamo MHL 2022
F Nikita Guslistov 5’10” 174 Severstal KHL Carolina Hurricanes 2021 7 209
F Marat Khusnutdinov 5’11” 176 SKA St. Petersburg KHL Minnesota Wild 2020 2 37
F Matvei Michkov 5’10” 159 SKA St. Petersburg KHL 2023
F Alexander Pashin 5’8″ 154 Toros Neftekamsk VHL Carolina Hurricanes 2020 7 199
F Vasily Ponomaryov 5’10” 181 Spartak Moskva KHL Carolina Hurricanes 2020 2 53
F Fyodor Svechkov 6’0″ 187 SKA-1946 MHL Nashville Predators 2021 1 19
F Kirill Tankov 6’2″ 190 SKA-Neva VHL Pittsburgh Penguins 2021 7 218
F Pavel Tyutnev 5’10” 185 Loko Yaroslavl MHL 2022
F Danila Yurov 6’1″ 179 Metallurg KHL 2022
F Ivan Zinchenko 6’2″ 183 Vityaz Podolsk KHL 2022
F Dmitri Zlodeyev 5’11” 183 Spartak Moskva KHL Vancouver Canucks 2020 6 175

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