Steve Yzerman and friends pitched a slider with their second round pick (52nd overall) by selecting Dmitri Buchelnikov. He was projected to go somewhere in the third to fourth round, but Detroit showed just how high they are on the kid by picking him this early, and with 51 picks between this selection and their next, they must have believed that he wouldn’t fall to 105th. This is essentially a bonus pick at any rate, having been acquired in the Mantha-Vrana trade.
At any rate, Buchelnikov (they pronounced it ‘Boo-SHELL-Nikov’ at the Bell Centre) is a left winger from Nizny Tagil, Russia, which is waaaaay out there by Perm and Yekaterinburg and the Ural Mountains (north of Khazakstan.) He currently plays left wing for SKA-1946 in St. Petersburg in the MHL (Russia’s CHL-equivalent.) He produced well this season, with 75 points in 56 games, but he looks to be a bit of a project. Overall, this is a bit of a gamble, high-ceiling pick for Detroit and it will take a few years to see how it pans out. If that dismays you, just head to the highlight video at the bottom.
Here are the nitty-gritty stats:
Age: 18 (9.6.03)
Hometown: Nizhny Tagil, RUS
Position: Left Wing
Weight: 168 lbs
‘21-’22 Team: SKA-1946 St. Petersburg
Note: Detroit is scheduled to have three picks in the 4th round. The plan is to have them all in one article.