The Phoenix Coyotes select from the OHL's London Knights, Center, Vladislav Namestnikov
|2010 - Vladislav Namestnikov||30||39||69||12||49|
Right now you're saying: "Who?" But really that's my reaction to most everyone in this draft after the top three. So what I went looking for is the type of player the Coyotes organization would want. They might even be able to trade down a few spots to get Namestnikov but no one seems to really know where anyone is going since he's projected anywhere from 10th to not in the first round.
So who is Vladislav Namestnikov? Well he's been a pretty good player in the OHL and chose to play there rather than in the KHL though he was drafted by Moscow Dynamo. He's a solid two way player that can dangle and pass extremely well, but also gets back on defense and isn't a liability at all. He's also played well digging for pucks in the corners and upping his physical game since coming to North America. Another plus is that he's a center which the Coyotes are certainly short on positionally.
One thing that is a little worrying is that at 6'0" he's under weight at only 170 pounds. That being said, he is only through his first year of Junior eligibility so there is plenty of time for him to put on some extra muscle as he shouldn't be counted on to contribute to the team right away. That can pretty much be said of all the guys in this year's draft though so he's not alone there.
After the jump: Video of Namestnikov from this year's OHL season.
A News London story on Namestnikov
Highlights spliced together by Fan: Some pretty nice goals and moves in there.