KHL Update – The World Junior Championship Russian roster:
Ivan Chekhovich, F, SJ – A back injury forced the skilled Russian out of the tournament a day before the last preliminary game versus the Swiss
Artyom Nikolayev, F, not drafted – Has 10 points in 16 VHL games for SKA-Neva St. Petersburg and no points in 13 KHL games for SKA St. Petersburg
Alexander Yaremchuk, F, not drafted – He has played all year in the KHL with Avangard Omsk and through 16 games as a young player has one assist
Artyom Volkov, D, not drafted – Volkov has played a majority of his career in the MHL and has played a couple games in the VHL this season. He has never lit up any season as he is not an offense-minded defenseman
Daniil Valitov, D, not drafted – The 18-year old defenseman was cut as he was one of the youngest players on the team and Russians prefer an older line up. He has nine points in 13 MHL games, but has zero points in two VHL games and seven KHL games.
***Two more players need to be cut as Head Coach Bragin said he will go with 13F and 7D. That will happen right up to the deadline, which guaranteed will be after I post this!
Daniil Tarasov, CBJ – Tarasov should be the starting goalie for Russia and has a chance to be the top goalie in the tournament. Last season he was one of the best MHL goalies with a 0.928 save percentage in 40 games. This year in the VHL for Toros Neftekamsk he has a 0.916 sv% in 16 games.
Pyotr Kochetkov, not drafted – Kochetkov has a game in the KHL where he did not look great (for a poor team), but in 12 VHL games has been very rock solid for HK Ryazan. He can be a solid back up who could have a chance to steal the starters net if required.
Amir Miftakhov, not drafted – The 18-year old is the youngest of the three goalies selected and will likely see all the press box action he can handle, while backing up a weak game where Russia wants to protect its starter. He has a chance to be draft this season as he is a very athletic and quick goalie. The tools are there
Defense (from last pre-tournament game Dec 23 vs Switzerland minus recent cuts):
Samorukov, EDM – Rubinchik, not drafted
Samorukov is playing in the OHL and