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Canucks end draft day with potential steal in Kirill Kudryavtsev

The 208th overall selection was a consensus mid-round pick.

Kirill Kudryavtsev
Bob Davies/Soo Greyhounds

With their final pick in the 2022 NHL Draft, the Vancouver Canucks selected a player who was expected to be drafted earlier.

Vancouver made Kirill Kudryavtsev their seventh-round selection with the 208th overall pick in the draft.

According to most rankings, Kudryavtsev was expected to go somewhere between rounds three to five.

He finished 104th overall in Elite Prospects Consolidated Ranking of 13 different outlets, which would have made him an early fourth-round pick.

The 6-0, 200-pound Russian defenceman had a successful first season playing for the Soo Greyhounds of the OHL. He scored five goals and posted 39 points in 68 games.

Here’s what Kudryavtsev had to say about his performance this season.

“I think I’ve played pretty well, but I can still be better,” Kudryavtsev said in this interview. “I need to work on my offence.”

Ironically enough, Kudryavtsev’s associate coach Jordan Smith said that the youngster's offensive production has been the biggest improvement in his game.

“Coming over, he might have been more of a defensive defenceman. But in our system, he’s been given the green light to jump up and make plays and he’s shown the ability to do that.

“He’s got a great shot, he’s heads up all the time with the puck, he has the ability to make plays.

“It’s been nice to see him flourish throughout the season.”

Kudryavtsev will reportedly return to the Greyhounds next season.