With the 20th pick in the 2022 NHL Draft, the Washington Capitals selected Russian Ivan Miroshnichenko. He is a left winger and ESPN broadcaster Meghan Chayka said she believed he’s the most talented player in this draft class. She also said she thinks he will be an NHL superstar in five years.
That’s bold but Chayka does have a point. Watching his highlight reel, Miroshnichenko can drive to the net and has a wicked snipe. He could very well have the potential to be the best Russian goal scorer after Alex Ovechkin hangs up his skates.
Miroshnichenko becomes the ninth Russian born Caps player to be selected in the first round of the draft. The 18 year old was ranked third among European left wings and 11th among all European forwards by NHL Central Scouting.
Miroshnichenko is a native of Primmorsky Krai, Russia. He spent the 2021-22 season with Omsk Krylia in the Supreme Hockey League (Russia -2) recording 16 points with 10 goals and six assists in 31 games. The six foot one, 185 pound forward captained Team Russia o the gold medal at the 2021 Hlinka Gretzky Cup recording nine points in five games with four goals and nine assists.
His nine points during the tournament ranked tied for fourth among all skaters and his +7 plus minus rating ranked tied for second. He also represented Russia at the 2021 4 Nations Tournament, recording two points in three games with a goal and an assist.
He’s not only the ninth Russian to be drafted by the Caps in the first round, he’s also the 11th winger drafted and the first since Jakub Vrana at 13th overall in 2014.
Per Caps writer Mike Vogel, the Caps interviewed Miroshnichenko in person in Montreal the day before the draft. They did their due diligence with his medical reports as he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma last season which affected his ranking.
“He’s a really good player. [The scouts] liked the personality, they liked the character. Like what he’s battling through right now. Hopefully it works out and we got a really good player on our hands.”
The NHL Draft continues today with Rounds 2-7 as the Caps have five more picks. Their next pick comes in the second round at 46th overall. More picks to follow in the third round at 85th, fifth at 149th, sixth at 181st, and seventh at 213th.