Blues Get Second Round Steal with Ivan Barbashev


The St. Louis Blues got a player who most experts didn’t think would make it out of the first round, Ivan Barbashev, with the third pick of the second round in the 2014 NHL Draft. Barbashev was ranked as the 18th-best North American skater by NHL Central Scouting.

Barbashev, who was born in Russia but has spent the past two years playing for Moncton of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, is a left wing who is viewed as a spectacular puck distributor with the potential to eventually develop into a more viable scoring threat. Over 48 games for Moncton in 2013-14, he scored 25 goals and notched 43 assists.

Barbashev, who will turn 19 years old in December, is 6 feet tall and 181 pounds. Scouts see him as a player who is a very polished skater and can provide some physicality and get to the puck. Unlike many Russian players who come over to the NHL, Barbashev has already made a smooth transition to America and is considered to be well-adjusted to the American game.

Interestingly, Barbashev has a close relationship with another young Blues forward, Dmitrij Jaskin. Jaskin tweeted a picture of the two together at the NHL Draft on Friday:

Though he lived in the Czech Republic for a time as a young player, Jaskin is also a Russian native and moved over to Canadian juniors in the years preceding the draft, just as Barbashev did. It should be exciting to see if they can carry that connection over to the ice and possibly play on a line together in the future.