Saturday, June 26, 2010
CAPITALS STICK WITH RUSSIAN ROOTS
Station Nation Staff
Ranked as a late first or early second round pick, Saint John Sea Dogs forward Stanislav Galiev found himself sitting in the stands a little longer than most expected.
But despite the 18-year olds hardship, perhaps it was worth the wait.
“My preferences in the NHL Draft? I don’t know, maybe Washington or Pittsburgh or Detroit. I cheered for the Capitals in my childhood but I didn’t follow the NHL too closely,” said Galiev to Russian Machine Never Breaks prior to the draft.
The National Hockey League’s regular season champion Washington Capitals selected the Russian in the third round, 86th overall at Saturday’s portion of the NHL Entry Draft in Los Angeles, California.
His slip down to the third round was a surprise to almost everyone. TSN ranked Galiev as their 40th best prospect, NHL Central Scouting listed him at 20 among North American players, International Scouting Services at 24, and The Hockey News had him at 37.
“He should end up as a second-rounder but may slip into the third,” said Willy Palov in the Chronicle Herald on Friday, one of the only persons to say that he may slip to the third round.
Even more surprising than his fall in the draft was the fact that several QMJHL players were taken in front of him. Nearly every publication had the first year player rated a distant second behind first round pick and Moncton Wildcat defenseman Brandon Gormley.
In total, 22-players from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League were selected in the draft.
Selected first overall in the Canadian Hockey League Import Draft last summer, Galiev had a strong season and played primarily on the first line with Mike Hoffman and Nicholas Petersen. In 67 regular season games, the right winger registered 15 goals and 45 assists.
In the playoffs, Galiev recorded eight goals and 11 assists in 21 matches that helped Saint John reach the league final. Playing a long season seemed to hurt “Staz” however and failed to contribute on the score sheet in the Presidents Cup Final against Moncton.
While being selected by the Capitals may be a dream for the Russian rookie, Galiev may also play with his favourite player someday – Alexander Semin.
“Semin, he's my favourite player. I want to be him," said the Sea Dog to NHL.com.
Along with putting up some solid offensive numbers, he also played in the Home Hardware CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game and was named to the QMJHL All-Rookie Team. His 19 playoff points also led all first-year players.