Looking at NHL Draft prospect Igor Chernyshov

Finally! A big guy who can help the Vegas Golden Knights in the future in this year's NHL Draft. What makes Igor Chernyshov unique?
Igor Chernyshov (25), a hockey player during the contests at...
Igor Chernyshov (25), a hockey player during the contests at... / SOPA Images/GettyImages
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What Igor Chernyshov brings to the table

One reason why Igor Chernyshov looks like a great NHL Draft prospect is his scrappiness. During his time in the KHL, he resorted to battling for every puck, taking on more experienced players than himself. The left winger also has physical play to his name, forcing opponents out of the play by pushing them through the corners.

That experience in a top-flight league also makes him closer to playing in the NHL than most draft prospects. Getting his dues in during the KHL will make him better off across the pond, where he'll bring his wisdom and hockey IQ with him. That's great news for teams like the Vegas Golden Knights, who are looking for forward depth in every place.

Of course, there's also his size, where he stands at 6'2". Size isn't taught in the game and is a valued commodity for the Golden Knights. Look at Ivan Barbashev, who's a big, powerful forward himself. He can plow through opponents and act as an offensive threat, which makes him valuable to Vegas.

Add in his good skating ability and he's capable of cracking the lineup regularly. Chernyshov must develop his offensive skill set further, growing into his game as he gains the necessary experience. Otherwise, he's a great player who can become a key player for a wanting NHL team.

The verdict

Igor Chernyshov cut his teeth in the higher leagues, which makes him a lucrative NHL Draft prospect. Playing against NHL-ready opponents is a plus for prospecting franchises, for they won't worry about developing him as much. Teams like the Vegas Golden Knights will also appreciate his physical size and style, where he can knock opponents over and control the play.

Granted, he's not the perfect prospect, specifically with his offensive skill set still raw. The Russian forward will still need a few seasons to grow his game and develop his skills further. There's also the question about whether he'll leave the KHL for good. It might be a wasted pick if the 18-year-old sticks around in Russia, especially if he's comfortable playing in his home country.

Still, this could be a steal for the Golden Knights if the left winger falls to them at the 19th pick. With Vegas not having much regarding reliable forward prospects, Chernyshov can become an excellent piece for the team. He fits the system perfectly, with Vegas having a player similar to Barbashev (if developed right).