By Ian Oland
The Washington Capitals selected left wing Ivan Miroshnichenko with their first-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft.
Miroshnichenko played for Omsk Krylia of the Russian VHL last season, scoring 16 points (10g, 6a) in 31 games. Miroshnichenko, like Alex Ovechkin, is a right-handed shot that plays on his off wing. He’s six-foot-one and 185 pounds.
The pick was widely praised by ESPN.
With the 20th pick in the 2022 NHL Draft, the Washington Capitals are proud to select Ivan Miroshnichenko!#CapsDraft pic.twitter.com/PlK4vwUtuI
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) July 8, 2022
“This is a steal for the Washington Capitals,” ESPN’s Kevin Weekes said after the pick.
“I think he’s the most talented player in this draft class,” ESPN’s Meghan Chayka added. “He is the most widely projected prospect. And definitely a dark horse and part of that was that he had Hodgkin’s lymphoma and missed a lot of this season. We don’t have a lot of data on him. He excels on driving to the net in the offensive zone, carries the puck to scoring areas, and his goal scoring ability, puck recoveries… and he plays an aggressive style causing turnovers. He doesn’t need a lot of quality shots. He capitalizes and scores. You want this player on your team. I’ll say now, I think he’ll be a superstar in the NHL in five years.”
What a story ❤️
Ivan Miroshnichenko is selected 20th overall by the @Capitals after battling cancer this past year. #NHLDraft pic.twitter.com/9ABEclIrj9
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) July 8, 2022
Miroshnichenko was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma in March which ended his 2021-22 season early. It’s unclear how it will affect his 2022-23 season.
According to the Capitals’ Mike Vogel, the team interviewed Miroshnichenko on Wednesday and reviewed his medical reports before being comfortable selecting him.
Miroshnichenko would have been ranked much higher, but he was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma last season. #Caps did their due diligence with his medical reports and interviewed him in person here yesterday in Montreal. #ALLCAPS
— Mike Vogel (@VogsCaps) July 8, 2022
Miroshnichenko won a silver medal with Russia in the under-18 World Junior Championship in 2021. Miroshnichenko scored six goals in seven tournament games and had eight points overall. Miroshnichenko posted a photo of him shaking the hand of Shane Wright (picked fourth overall) and added the caption, “see you again😉.”
Miroshnichenko finished second on the Russian national team in goals to Matvei Michkov who had 12.
He also won gold with Russia at the 2020 Youth Olympic Games held in Switzerland. Miroshnichenko captained the team.
Miroshnichenko was the first Russian, still playing in Russia, to be picked in the 2022 NHL Draft. This is likely due to the uncertainty that Russian players will be able to come over now and in the future due to Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine.
Ivan Miroshnichenko is thrilled to be a Capital. #NHLDraft pic.twitter.com/xU1LUKMhhb
— Steven Ellis (@StevenEllisTHN) July 8, 2022
Due to how little he played last season, Miroshnichenko was all across the board on draft projections heading into the event.
Ranked #33 by ELITEPROSPECTS.COM
Ranked #23 by FCHOCKEY
Ranked #19 by TSN/BOB McKENZIE
Ranked #19 by MCKEEN’S HOCKEY
Ranked #15 by TSN/CRAIG BUTTON
Ranked #11 by NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING (EU Skaters)
Ranked #27 by SPORTSNET
Ranked #22 by ISS HOCKEY
Ranked #21 by RECRUIT SCOUTING
Ranked #25 by DOBBERPROSPECTS
Ranked #12 by DRAFT PROSPECTS HOCKEY
Ranked #28 by SMAHT SCOUTING
Ranked #18 by THE PUCK AUTHORITY
Miroshnichenko will not be eligible to leave Russia until 2024. The forward signed a three-year contract extension with KHL Avangard Omsk on February 26, 2021. He will be 20 then.
“I have been in the Avangard system for several months now,” Miroshnichenko said after signing and per a Google Translation. “Everything suits me here: the preparation, the specialists – everything is at the highest level. I have not managed to show perfect results yet, but we will work, and I hope that I will gradually earn an invitation, including to the first team – I would really like to go through the training camp with Avangard and prove that the club did not believe in me in vain.”
Capitals press release
Capitals Select Ivan Miroshnichenko in the First Round of the 2022 NHL Draft
MONTREAL – The Washington Capitals selected left wing Ivan Miroshnichenko with the 20th overall selection in the first round of the 2022 NHL Draft.
Miroshnichenko, 18, was ranked third among European left wings and 11th among all European forwards by NHL Central Scouting. The Primmorsky Krai, Russia native spent the 2021-22 season with Omsk Krylia in the Supreme Hockey League (Russia-2) recording 16 points (10g, 6a) in 31 games. The 6’1”, 185-pound forward captained Russia to the gold medal at the 2021 Hlinka Gretzky Cup, where he recorded nine points (4g, 5a) in five games. Miroshnichenko’s nine points during the tournament ranked tied for fourth among all skaters and his +7 plus/minus rating ranked tied for second. Miroshnichenko also represented Russia at the 2021 4 Nations Tournament, where he recorded two points (1g, 1a) in three games.
Miroshnichenko becomes the ninth Russian to be drafted by the Capitals in the first round in team history. Additionally, he is the 11th left wing to be drafted by Washington in the first round and the first since Jakub Vrana (13th overall) in 2014.
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