Landing in the 22nd overall spot in the CanucksArmy prospect rankings is the well-rounded Russian defenceman Alexander Alexeyev.
Unfortunately, Alexeyev has suffered some injury issues over the last two seasons which has cast some doubt on his overall outlook., but the Rebels defenceman has such a complete two-way game that makes it feel like he has even more to give. That upside is something that many pundits and scouts point at when evaluating the defenceman.
Given that he made the leap to North America knowing zero English and then just recently completed all his draft combine interviews in English is just an indication that Alexeyev is someone who can adapt and persevere through whatever comes his way and bodes well for his upward trajectory.
That isn’t something that is quantifiable but should alleviate any concerns about him not working his way out of the injury woes of the past.
Not to mention, he has some really encouraging underlying numbers.
- Age/Birthdate: 17.83/ November 15, 1999
- Birthplace: Petersburg RUS
- Frame:6-foot-3/ 190 lbs
- Draft Year Team: Red Deer Rebels(WHL)
- U17 WHC Silver Medal
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Alexeyev stands out in a variety of numbers including involvement percentage, SEAL, and XLS%. He had consistent production throughout the entire season with a good balance of 5v5, powerplay and shorthanded production. His GF% isn’t noteworthy but that GFREL% of +7.3% is encouraging.
Adjusted Scoring (SEAL)
Alexeyev is just hanging out with the forwards in terms of 5v5 eP60 production. He saw his ice time spike up at the midpoint of his season and continue to hover around the 20 minute mark of 5v5 ice time per game. Overall, he wasn’t a drag on any of his teammates in terms of GF% WOWY.
Alexeyev shines in terms of pGPS with 53.4% of his cohorts going onto becoming NHL regulars. That is an increase from his D-1 season that saw 41.9% of comparable players go onto success NHL careers.
You won’t find many better bets in a draft class and particularly on the back end.
Alexander Alexeyev is a two-way defender who makes his mark in the offensive zone and the defensive zone.
In the offensive zone, he has quick hands that he uses when he jumps up into the rush or when the play is set-up in the offensive zone. He’s smart with the puck, his shot, and passing to ensure that he isn’t creating an unnecessary turnover. He has a hammer of a slap shot, a good wrist that he is adept at making sure gets through, or is able to fake those shots to feed his teammates.
He is surprisingly quick on his feet combing agility and powerful stride to allow him to create separation from opponents without sacrificing the ability to control the puck. The Rebels defender is strong on the puck and is very hard to push off it. and is willing to join the rush to make things happen.
On the defensive side of the game – Alexeyev uses those strong and active feet to contain whatever comes at him. The left-handed defender can take the body, using his strong frame to separate opponents from the puck and disrupt their lanes but he doesn’t get out of position to do so. He is smart with his engagements and can use his long reach to just do a simple poke of the puck and he is off to the races in the other direction.
Overall – Alexeyev has such a complete toolbox that it’s hard to find any glaring deficiencies to his game. He is physical when he needs to be but isn’t running around chasing it. He joins the rush or makes a great outlet. He contributes regularly in the offensive zone and can run a power play.
He was named to the CHL Top Prospects Game but was unable to attend due to the passing of his mother.
The concerns about his injury history are valid but are more likely caused by some bad luck. He has been limited to 86 games over the last seasons and thus those questions come up. But he has the potential to be a solid two-way defender who can take care of his own zone while being a smart and effective offensive player that might be too hard for some teams to pass up.
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He missed a lot of time last year due to a knee injury, so we were erring on the side of caution when starting him as a B-rated player… In my last viewing, he must have played 35 minutes in a game that Red Deer won in overtime. He’s a real solid player in all aspects of the game. He has the size and is a skater who can carry the puck and gain the zone. He makes good passes, has a good stick defensively.
From Future Considerations:
A productive blueliner, he is a strong skater, even though he is lanky and looks awkward at times in his stride. He can accelerate and generate pretty good speed. For a big player, he is very strong on his edges. His lateral mobility is good and he pivots well. Defensively, he reads situations at a high level, having no issues with gaps and retrievals. Quick with his stick, he sticks to a low-risk game in his own zone. Definitely not afraid to throw his body around to disrupt the opposition. He is well-rounded enough to be deployed in all situations. He has great awareness with the puck, which he moves extremely well. He is a deceptive playmaker, who uses fakes and strong edgework to peel away from opponent and open up passing lanes. Breaking out, he is able to withstand pressure and physicality. He has a strong presence in the offensive line and he isn’t afraid to jump in to support his teammates, given the Rebels a boost. He has a heavy shot, but his preference is to look first at passing the puck. He could find a way to inject some energy into his game. The overall tempo of his game, at times, leaves something to be desired. One of the problems, according to scouts, is that Alexeyev, riddled by injuries, played only 86 games over the past two seasons. Lots of tools at his disposal.
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CanucksArmy’s 2018 NHL Draft Rankings