With the 50th pick in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, the Winnipeg Jets have selected Nikita Chibrikov from SKA-1946 St. Petersburg of the MHL
About Nikita Chibrikov
The flashy forward from Moscow, Russia, possesses elite playmaking abilities. When you combine Chibrikov’s vision, passing skills, and lethal shot, you have the total package. His ability to skate fluently and his aggressive style of play have allowed him to excel at every level he has played at. He was named captain of Team Russia’s loaded Under-18 squad for the World Junior Championship, which was proof of his leadership abilities. It’s no surprise to see him selected.
THW Prospect Profile Excerpt
“One of the better Russian players eligible for this year’s draft class, Nikita Chibrikov has a lot of promise to his game. What impresses me the most about him is his poise with the puck on his stick and his skating ability. He is able to effectively get to top speed using crossovers and is not afraid to attack open lanes driving through the neutral zone. He has good hands in tight and can find teammates in the slot even with a defender draped over him.
Related: THW 2021 NHL Draft Guide
“His shot is also something to behold. He is able to get it off in a hurry and is good at using deceptive moves to place it where he wants it. He does not shy down from physical play, either. He battles hard for the puck in the corners and has good lower-body strength, making it hard to knock him off the puck.
“The one knock against Chibrikov is his defensive play. At times, he is great at coming to backcheck and help disrupt passing lanes with his active stick, but other times he is practically invisible in the defensive zone or he barely tries. He processes the game at a high level and has shown that he reads the play really well. If he put more emphasis on coming to help out on defense on a consistent basis, I feel he would have a lot more people ranking him higher on their lists or rankings.”
How This Affects the Teams’ Plans
The Winnipeg Jets add Chibrikov who is a powerful Russian forward whose game is powered by speed, poise, and aggression. He possesses a wide range of skills. His role as captain of the Russian Under-18 national team provided further proof that he is a great leader. Despite the uncertainty as to when he will move to the NHL, he possesses the skills required to excel as a top-six forward.
Born and raised in Kamloops B.C. and a die hard fan of the Kamloops Blazers, hockey has always been apart of my life. Now, I am looking to get into the sports media world and make it a career. I will be covering the Winnipeg Jets for The Hockey Writers.
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