Reliable two-way winger with good offensive instincts and goal-scoring touch. Well-rounded skill set and may become a middle-six NHL option in the near future.
Click to Expand
March 2019 – Volkov has become a fixture in Syracuse’s top six, most often skating with Gabriel Dumont and Cory Conacher at this point in the season as the Crunch near the postseason. Volkov’s scoring pace in his sophomore AHL campaign closely resembles his rookie season, as he currently sits at 16 goals and 37 points in 64 games, though most nights he appears to be one of Syracuse’s most effective forwards. Volkov, along with his line, often dictate the pace of play and drive possession while he’s out there. He often puts his well-rounded skill set to use as he rarely gives opposing defenses an inch and defends well on the backcheck against attackers, and he has firmly cemented himself as one of Syracuse’s top forwards despite lacking a torrid scoring pace. Being a late cut for Tampa’s opening night roster in 2018-2019, there leaves great optimism for Volkov as a legitimate NHL option for the Lightning in 2019-2020. Brandon Holmes
October 2018 – A late cut from Tampa’s camp this year, Volkov was expected to continue his upward trajectory in offence this season in Syracuse. He has struggled to begin this campaign, notching only three assists through seven games played. To reach his full potential as a scoring threat on the wing, Volkov appears to need more seasoning for the foreseeable future. Jordan Deshane
May 2018 – The 2017 second-round pick wrapped up his rookie season with the Syracuse Crunch in a tough playoff series loss to the Toronto Marlies. Volkov’s regular season success carried through into playoffs where he was able to contribute nearly a point per game through the first two rounds of playoffs. The 20-year-old transitioned from Russia with exceptional ease in his draft+1 campaign, and while due to his age, he should be expected to be slightly ahead of his 2017 draft peers in terms of development, Volkov’s trajectory remains impressive. The Russian gave a positive preview to the Lightning brass in his first training camp and could look to earn a longer audition next fall. His scoring touch will be valuable in the NHL, but we’ll likely have to wait one or two more years to see him being deployed regularly in the big league. Brayden Olafson
January 2018 – The AHL rookie concluded 2017 as the Crunch’s leading goal scorer, lighting the lamp 10 times since October. One of the final cuts at Lightning training camp has had a successful start in North America, and proving that he is able to finish on a smaller ice surface this early certainly makes the second-round pick justified. Brayden Olafson
October 2017 – After entering the Lighting system as an off-the-board pick in the 2nd round of the 2017 Entry Draft, Volkov was a pleasant surprise throughout Lightning training camp. Introduced into camp with a similar opportunity to his peers, Volkov quickly separated himself from the bunch by netting two pucks in his opening contest against the Carolina Hurricanes, though both goals were called back due to goaltender interference. In his next two preseason contests Volkov made his way through the lineup, in turn being exposed to a higher quality of competition. At first, while flanking Anthony Cirelli, and alongside Alex Killorn, Volkov had success, netting the Lightning’s only two goals in a 4-2 loss to James Reimer and the Florida Panthers. After such an impressive showing in his first two auditions, Volkov was beginning to make his case to overthrow a Lightning veteran. In his third audition, however, while grouped with Ondrej Palat and Tyler Johnson, Volkov faced a stronger competition, and unfortunately was not up to the task. That assignment, however, did give some insight as to where the Lightning staff might hope to see Volkov in a season or two. For now, Volkov has been assigned to Syracuse where he’ll compete with a strong crop of young forwards, and focus on playing a dependable two-way game that will surely see him competing for a middle-6 role in the next couple of years. Brayden Olafson
June 2017 – Alexander Volkov was selected with the Lightning’s second round pick of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, and his history as well as future are probably the most interesting of any of the Lightning’s 2017 selections. The over-aged Russian was passed over in last year’s entry draft after playing the entirety of his season with his SKA St. Petersburg MHL club. This season, the lefty, who plays on the opposite wing was promoted to the VHL for fifteen games, in which he produced three goals. The pick is peculiar because it is likely that the Lightning could have selected Volkov an entire round (or more) later in the draft. Al Murray, Director of Scouting for the Lightning, said that “We go by our list. The best player that we feel is going to be the best NHL player is the guy we take.” There is a possibility that the Lightning had tried to trade down in the draft to take Volkov later, as well as inherit other assets, however were comfortable taking him at 48. A positive point on Volkov is that, according to Yzerman, Volkov currently does not have a KHL contract in place for the 2017-18 season, indicating that there is potential for him to come to North America and join the Syracuse Crunch. Yzerman also said that Volkov “handles the puck well and has really good hockey sense.” While there may be some risk associated with the pick, it appears that Yzerman and Murray have done their due diligence and are very optimistic about Volkov’s outlook. Brayden Olafson