He has all of the tools to become a regular in the NHL, but his offensive upside is still questionable as to whether he can become a top-6 talent.
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December 2018 – Morozov has bounced around four different teams in three different Russian leagues but has not looked out of place in any situation he has been placed in, including the three games played in the KHL for SKA St. Petersburg. He is expected to be a leader on Russia’s World Junior Championship team where they have medaled in seven of the last eight tournaments, but haven’t won gold since 2011. Morozov is responsible in both ends of the rink and can find the score sheet in a variety of ways. Vegas will be watching their first pick from the 2018 draft very closely to see how his development is progressing. Undoubtedly, they’d like him to come to North America sooner rather than later. Mason Black
September 2018 – Morozov started his season in Russia’s MHL with a bang picking up two goals and an assist in his first three games for SKA-1946 St. Petersburg. He is on a line with highly rated 2019 NHL draft eligible prospect Vasili Podkolzin and Kirill Marchenko who was also drafted in the second round by the Columbus Blue Jackets. It’s not unreasonable to think that if this line stays together throughout the season they could put up historic numbers in the MHL. Mason Black
September 2018 – Sometimes doing well in the playoffs has its disadvantages, and making it to the Stanley Cup Final is no exception. The Golden Knights had to wait patiently until the end of the second round when they took Ivan Morozov with the 61st pick. Morozov was ranked everywhere from early second round to late third round depending on the publication, but he brings a two-way style of game that should translate well to the NHL. Morozov played in the MHL where he compiled 23 points in 30 games and five more points in seven playoff games. He caught the eye of many scouts at the U18 World Junior Classic where he tied for second on team Russia in points. Morozov is adept at both ends of the rink, however this may limit him from a fantasy perspective because he’s well versed in the defensive zone. It’s expected that he’ll stay to play in the KHL after his rights were transferred to perennial powerhouse SKA St. Petersburg, which should help his progression, but there is always the worry of the “Russian factor”. Mason Black
June 2018 – With their first selection of the 2018 NHL Entry Draft, the Vegas Golden Knights selected Morozov with the 61st pick. He had a very successful year in the MHL as a 17-year-old posting 17 points in 23 games. Morozov is more of a two-way center that can find the back of the net with his quick, accurate release. His stock rose substantially after a fantastic showing at the U18 Five Nations in February and also the World U18 Tournament. He can be a bit selfish at times in the offensive zone and will need to start utilizing his teammates more to supplement scoring, but his play in the defensive zone is far above most players at the same age. In only two years at the draft table Vegas has made huge strides filling their prospect cupboards full of legitimate NHL potential, so you can be sure they did their homework with their first pick in the 2018 draft. Mason Black