2020-21 Team: Dynamo St. Petersburg/Dynamo Moskva (VHL)
Date of Birth: Oct. 9, 2000
Place of Birth: St. Petersburg, Russia
Ht: 6-foot-1 Wt: 165 pounds
Position: Right Wing
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2019 first-year eligible, three-time draft returnee
Dmitri Rashevsky is a twice-overage forward re-entering the NHL draft for a third year in a row, having gone undrafted in the first two. He spent a lot of time with different teams this year, first shuttling between Dynamo St. Petersburg’s three levels of Russian hockey, followed by a trade to Dynamo Moskva, where he joined their Visshaya Hokkeinaya Liga (VHL) side in Russia’s second tier of men’s hockey for the rest of the year.
His standout tools of quick reactions, slick hands and great offensive instincts make him a threat with the puck, as he stickhandles and dekes through multiple layers in a row, improvising on the fly to come out of the crowd with the puck on his stick. He rarely over-handles the puck, too, often using his teammates as support options for quick back-and-forth passing plays in-between coverage. So far, however, his skating and lack of size have held him back from a position in the top 200-plus players selected in the NHL draft.
When Rashevsky receives the puck in transition, his instinct is to gain the middle, or at least to fake in that direction if the opponent has it covered. He uses full-body deception to send opponents the wrong way, or to open up passing and shooting lanes to exploit. His shot is decent enough to fool goaltenders from mid-to-close range, and he has a non-stop motor that carries him around the ice with intensity and purpose.
His thinner frame makes him more susceptible to losing puck battles, and his skating lacks top-end speed and versatility; he has good edges, but under-utilizes his crossovers and lacks the ankle flexion required to stack his knee above his toes and grab more ice with each stride.
Rashevsky’s offensive potential is mainly exacerbated by a high-end brain; his passing and shooting themselves are not perfect, but he outsmarts defenders and goaltenders with his deceptiveness and maximizes his team’s chances of putting the puck in the back of the net. He managed 22 points in 30 VHL games on two different teams at the men’s level. Although he is two years older than his 2021 NHL Draft peers, Rashevsky could be a decent pick-up for a team looking for late-round, high-end potential.
Related THW Draft Profiles
Dmitri Rashevsky– NHL Draft Projection
Rashevsky did not show up on the NHL Central Scouting Bureau’s list of top European skaters, nor is he on any other list than EliteProspects’ rankings at 100th overall. He was also left out of Matthew Zator‘s, Peter Baracchini’s and Andrew Forbes’ respective rankings at THW. However, with video scouting being more prevalent in a pandemic-stricken year in which some leagues did not even get a season to play, it is very likely that Rashevsky has his name on some NHL teams’ lists, especially with the skills he’s shown so far this year. Expect him to be a fringe fifth- to seventh-round pick, but some teams might really love what they see and pick him in the first three rounds, especially with a draft lacking high-potential profiles like his.
Related: THW’s 2021 NHL Draft Guide
He will hope that teams have done their research; Rashevsky has decent offensive skill and just needs refinement in his skating and strength to make him a great hockey player.
“He’s a good problem-solver; whenever he has to deke a guy, read a passing lane, find the open guy, usually he’s able to do it quick; there’s some high-end skill there.” – Yannick St. Pierre, current Montreal Canadiens video scout, YouTube (2020)
“His teammates don’t use him nearly enough at the KHL level. Many times, Rashevsky popped open in the slot… only to see his linemates fire the puck on net. He had to create his own shots, which made them less dangerous. Speed looked about average at this level, but high stride-rate and work-rate made him look faster than he is. His hands are still his best attribute: quick reaction time and ability to avoid pokechecks.” – Dylan Griffing, EliteProspects (from The 2021 EliteProspects Draft Guide, EliteProspects, 01-07-2021)
- Quick reactions
- High-end motor
Under Construction (Improvements to Make)
- Passing accuracy
Rashevsky is truly boom-or-bust at this point. There is a good chance that he never sees a day in the NHL, but if he does, he could end up anywhere in the top-nine as an energetic and skillful forward who will always give defenders more than they can handle offensively. That includes the top line, where his ability to utilize his teammates in small areas would be accentuated by the presence of players as smart and reactive as he is. It’s a longshot, however, and if he does end up becoming good enough, he will likely replicate Kirill Kaprizov and Artemi Panarin by remaining overseas until his mid-20s before coming over.
Risk – 4/5, Reward – 4/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Offense – 9/10, Defense – 6/10
Rashevsky has no awards or achievements of note to date.
Dmitri Rashevsky Statistics
Lebanese-Canadian hockey writer/Scout. I follow the draft very closely, working with both The Hockey Writers and DobberProspects to provide draft coverage and continue furthering my knowledge of hockey.