A hulking power forward who possesses a big shot and a willingness to use his size. There is a lot of work to do on his skating and play away from the puck but there is intrigue offensively.
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April 2023 – Sokolov had an impressive year in the AHL where he had 21 goals and 38 assists in 70 games for Belleville as a 22-year-old. It earned him five games with Ottawa at the end of the season where he scored his first NHL goal and had his first NHL assist. He had a much better audition with the Senators than the eight games he saw in 2021-2022 where he looked over his head. He is a restricted free agent this year and one would think that Ottawa would keep him in North America for the next two years at the very least. He is right on the cusp of the NHL. Grant Campbell
November 2022 – Sokolov is one of the few Senator prospects in Belleville not to be hit with injury. He has five goals and 12 assists in 16 games so far. He is progressing and that is all you can ask from any 22-year-old prospect, but skating and defensive play will always be his Achilles heel. It is up to him to outwork and outplay the opposition and fellow prospects to get to the next level. He has a lot of people in Ottawa cheering him on. Grant Campbell
October 2022 – Some felt that Sokolov would make a push to be included on the opening night roster of Ottawa. He seemed over-matched in the three pre-season games he dressed for and took himself out of the running fairly early. He will need to dig deep back in Belleville and work hard to get another opportunity in the NHL as there are other players poised to pass him on the depth chart. Grant Campbell
June 2022 – Sokolov continued to progress with a fine year in the AHL where he had 19 goals and 31 assists in 64 games with Belleville. He got an extended look in the NHL for eight games with Ottawa this season but was held scoreless. The big Russian will hope to start next season with Ottawa, but another 50-60 games in the AHL won’t hurt him as he wasn’t quite ready for the NHL in his eight-game look. Grant Campbell
October 2020 – The 20-year-old was the Senators’ third pick in the second round of the 2020 NHL Draft. The overage forward tore up the QMJHL last season scoring 46 goals and 92 points finishing third in scoring. He has gone undrafted to this point due to his issues as a skater but his season this past year was too impressive for Pierre Dorion and the Senators to pass up. He was all over draft rankings this season as some felt the skating issues could be resolved with some professional development and others felt the issues were too prominent. One thing is for certain though, the shot on the Cape Breton forward is legit. Sokolov is an absolute unit at 6’4″ and 240lbs and he knows how to use his size to protect the puck and weigh on his opponents. He plays a heavy game and leans into the defender, welcoming the contact at times. He fires the puck from all over the ice and his heavy shot beat goalies clean. The package that the young Russian brings is very impressive but there will be work to be done. His conditioning has come into question in the past and he will need to continue keeping that in check. He may want to get a bit leaner to get his feet moving a bit more but that will be a delicate balance as he will want to maintain the strength that allows him to play the style that he excels at. With the amount of draft capital that the Senators had in 2020, they could take some swings. Sokolov is just that, a swing for the fences. Tony Ferrari