Andrei Svetlakov

Aaron Vickers

Svetlakov is a puck wizard who impressed us in each showing this season. He played in the CHL Canada-Russia Series in November and really caught our eye there, before reaffirming our thoughts with his play at the World Junior and again later in the season with CSKA of the KHL. He is a slick-skating center who has a good stick, makes skilled plays with his hands and can make a defender look foolish with a dangle while being lulled into puck-watching. He makes smart decisions with the puck, not trying to do too much and causing turnovers. Svetlakov has a very creative eye and can make some very impressive passing plays. While he is a solid playmaker, he is more of a natural finisher. He has a cracker release and can be very dangerous around the opposition’s crease. While not a true bruiser, Svetlakov is not afraid to play with some physicality in his game, hacking and whacking after the whistle, stepping up for contact or using his body to separate the puck from his opponent along the wall. He also makes it a habit to drive to the net every chance he gets both with and without the puck. Svetlakov is strong on the forecheck and reliable defensively. He’s highly skilled and creates his own chances. Svetlakov will be a highly sought after commodity, even if he has not expressed interest to come over and has recently signed a three-year extension on his KHL contract.   (May 2016)