The 2015 NHL draft was full of surprises, wasn't it? Let's go over a few things we learned about the newest member of the Dallas Stars — forward Denis Guryanov, most recently of Russia's HC Lada Togliatti.
Here is a scouting report on Gurianov from Red Line Report. pic.twitter.com/TkGXukwOg6— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) June 27, 2015
First of all, he loves to score. He did it six times in five games at the U18 World Junior Championships.
Second, he can play both left and right wing, according to his scouting report at The Draft Analyst.
He's usually the most skilled player on the ice at any given time. Guryanov has an excellent shot and release; he's most certainly a natural goal scorer who is very clever around the net. His release is lightning quick and can also fire off a pretty wicked backhander off the rush. Guryanov is also super competitive and plays with a strong desire to win and be the best. He uses his powerful leg drive and upper body strength to deliver solid body checks, but he can also dominate a cycle by protecting the puck with a long reach and sound positioning. He's shown flashes of being a playmaker, but he can also over-handle the puck and make questionable decisions. Like most offensive forwards, his commitment to the defensive zone is a work in progress, but he's always involved in the play and does not shy away from the dirty areas in either zone. Projects to be a top-six scoring forward who can be used in either special teams situations. A first-round lottery talent for sure.
And the Russian Factor isn't just about players: It reflects a certain bias in the scouting system.
"if his name was Smith he would be up there with Strome and the other top picks, teams scared of Russian factor", Joe McDonnell— Bruce LeVine (@BruceLeVinePuck) June 27, 2015
The shock of this pick turned to delight in real time.
Fabulous selection for the @DallasStars. The Red Line Report had him ranked 8th overall. Could be one of the big steals in this draft.— Owen Newkirk (@OwenNewkirk) June 27, 2015
(1/2) My thoughts on pick - The Stars scouts loved Gurianov. They had other good options, but baring one of those "elite" guys dropping to— Josh Bogorad (@JoshBogorad) June 27, 2015
(2/2) them, Gurianov was their guy all along. They know it surprised people and they don't care. They are confident in him and their pick.— Josh Bogorad (@JoshBogorad) June 27, 2015
The Stars quickly shared information about the next step for their new prospect.
Stars scout Evgueni Tsybouk said Gurianov should get a lot of playing time in KHL next season, will be good for his development.— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) June 27, 2015
And, of course, there were the usual getting-to-know-you duties.
Picture time! pic.twitter.com/tR3HHAnPwk— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) June 27, 2015
Welcome to Dallas, Denis! pic.twitter.com/h72u0izALx— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) June 27, 2015
Gurianov said he knows a lot about the Stars and the city. Watched Nichushkin play with Benn and Seguin. Very excited to be picked by Stars.— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) June 27, 2015
But how do you really spell his name? People really need to know.
Gurianov is listed with a "y" in his name in most reports, but the NHL is listing his name with an "i"
Thank you, Mike Heika! (He has much more at DallasNews.com.) [Sports Day DFW]
Did you know they did this like, 29 other times last night? Kooky. In case you missed any of the names — and since a thunderstorm knocked out cable reception in parts of North Texas, you might have — the NHL has you covered. [NHL.com]
And they're doing this six more times today! Don't forget, the Stars have a page for that. [DallasStars.com/Draft]
Make no mistake: The Dallas Stars got their man last night, says Mark Stepneski. [Stars Inside Edge]
Defending Big D's Huw Wales has more on this pick, including a shift-by-shift video that could make you giggle like a kindergarten baby. [DBD]
And Stephanie Vail, a.k.a. @MyRegularFace, captured a nice little Jim Lites moment in animated GIF format.
shoutout to the Stars guy fixing the tag pic.twitter.com/jms4jrO3Wa— Stephanie Vail (@myregularface) June 27, 2015
The first round gave us a night full of surprises, and the intrigue began with the third pick, says Adam Kimelman. [NHL.com]
Yet one of the blockbuster moves of the night happened well before the draft started, when the Boston Bruins traded 22-year-old defenseman and consensus Rainicorn Dougie Hamilton to the Calgary Flames for picks. Was it worth it? (Warning: NSFW.) [Stanley Cup of Chowder]
Young defensemen were the coin of the realm, as the New York Islanders let go of Griffin Reinhart to the Edmonton Oilers for the 16th and 33rd picks, the first of which became Mathew Barzal. [NBC Sports]
Finally: First overall was no surprise at all, unless you count the trolling game of one of Connor McDavid's future teammates.
Welcome to Edmonton, Connor. Don't mess up everything we've built the last 5 years! #FutureIsBright— Taylor Hall (@hallsy04) June 26, 2015