|Alexander Barkunov||Yaroslavl Russia 35 5+1=6 8 / 2 0+0 2|
Despite only playing for the second team last season Barkunov stepped right into the lineup of the first team this year and
played great hockey. He started out very good with two goals in his first two games and his offensive play and hard work
made up for his lack of experience. Faded a little after the WJC and was a healthy scratch in all but two playoff games.
Played in three tournaments with the Russian J20 team (1+3 in 14 games) including the WJC in Russia there he was one of
the better defencemen on a Russian team that finished 7th. With a senior-season under his belt he will hopefully be a factor
in both the regular season and the playoffs for Yaroslavl next year.
|Jonas Elofsson||HV71 Sweden 30 1+3=4 12|
After a mediocre season with Färjestad in 99-00 Elofsson signed a 2-year deal with TPS Åbo of the Finnish SM-Liiga and hoped
that the move would kickstart his development again. It didn’t work out at all. He never got into the playing style of TPS
and played on the 4th line in the first four games before he broke a finger which sidelined him for eight games. After the
injury healed it was the same story as before, Elofsson continued to get little ice-time on the 4th line and after a total
of ten games and zero points Elofsson and TPS parted ways. He signed a deal with HV71 of the Swedish Elite League and started
out really good with 3 points in his first six games, but he faded as the season continued and was a non-factor late in the
season when HV71 battled for a playoff-spot, which they missed. He will not be back with HV71 next year and his likely
destination is Leksand in the Swedish 2nd League.
|Andrei Ershov||Vityaz Russia 31 1+5=6 28|
Playing with his third team in three years Ershov managed to scored 1 goal and 5 assists for 6 points in 31 games with
Vityaz. Ershov, who has been recovering from a hand injury during the course of the last two seasons (he was limited to 10
games in 99-00), didn’t really play up to potential until late this season when he finished strong with 4 points (1+3)
in 9 games. Vityaz was relegated to the Russian Highleague and it’s unclear if Ershov will remain
with the team.
|Dmitri Levinski||Amur Russia 22 0+2=2 2|
When Levinski played junior hockey he was a big-time scorer but he has not been able to score at the highest level
(Superleague) yet. Played in 22 games with defensive-minded Amur and finished, just like last year, with 2 assists.
Information on Levinski’s play and ice-time from the Eastern-based Amur club has been very hard to get this season
and his low points total doesn’t look to good, but he is still young and hopefully he will get more ice-time and put
up some more points next year may it be with Amur, another Russian club or in North America.
|Vladislav Luchkin||Cherepovec Russia 28 2+3=5 10 / 4 0+0 4|
Luchkin finished his first season in the Superleague with 2 goals and 3 assists in 28 games for Cherepovec. Played very well
throughout the season but was not able convert all his chances into goals. Played in two international tournaments with the
Russian J20 team (1+1 in 7 games) but was a late cut from the team that played at the WJC. Should have a more productive
season in 01-02 as he picked up much needed experience this year.
|Olli Malmivaara||Jokerit J20 Finland (Jr.) 33 10+13=23 24 / 2 0+0 0|
The big Finnish defenceman spent most of the year playing with Jokerit’s junior-squad but was also called up for 5 games with
the senior-team in the Finnish SM-Liiga. His good play with Jokerit earned him a spot on the Finnish J20 Team throughout the
season with the silver at WJC being the highlight. Should have a good chance of cracking the line-up of the senior-team on
a regular basis in 01-02.
|Stepan Mokhov||Spartak Moscow Russia (2) 30 0+5=5 4|
After an up and down season with Novokuznetsk (Superleague) in 99-00 Mokhov moved on to Spartak Moscow in the Russian
Highleague to try to get more ice-time. But the season did not start very well as he only played in 2 of the first 18 games
for Spartak, which mostly played with a veteran lineup. But after a league-break in November Mokhov found his way into the
lineup on a regular basis and never looked back. He finished with five assists in 30 games as he helped Spartak advance to
the Russian Superleague. Due to his lack of ice-time early in the season he didn’t make the team that played at WJC and he
never got the chance to play in front of his home crowd in Moscow. Will most likely stay with Spartak next year.
|Jonas Nordqvist||Leksand Sweden 35 2+2=4 4 / 7 1+2=3 0|
In his first season in the Swedish Elite League Nordqvist played everything from first-line center to fourth-line wing
on a team that battled at the bottom of the league throughout the season and finally were demoted to the 2nd League after 50
straight years in the top league. Played 10 games and scored an impressive 19 points (6+13) at the junior level as he lead
Leksand to the Finals which they lost to Frölunda. Was a member of the Swedish J20 team which finished 4th at the WJC in
Russia and took over as first-line center after fellow Hawk Mattias Wennerberg went down with an injury in the second game.
Finished the WJC with 2 assists in 7 games and had a goal and an assist in two other tournaments with the J20 team. Not
under contract for next year and it is still unclear if he will resign with Leksand and play at a lower level or if he will
hook up with another team in the Elite League.
|Igor Radulov||SKA Russia 8 1+0=1 6|
The fast skating Russian winger played with three different teams this year as he suited up for SKA in the Superleague,
Kristall Saratov in the Highleague (2nd league) and with Yaroslavl’s second team which plays in the 3rd league. With SKA,
at the highest level, Radulov scored once in 8 games but showed that he might be to young for the play of the Superleague.
Stats and playing information from the other two teams are not available. No word on which team he will play for next year,
it could be with Yaroslavl or with another club in either the Superleague or the Highleague.
|Sergei Shikhanov||Metallurg M. Russia 24 4+4=8 27 / 10 1+0=1 6|
The hard-working Russian winger played 24 games with Russian Champions Metallurg. No information is available as to why he
couldn’t stay in the line-up on a more regular basis. Played in all playoff-games except the last two as the team captured
the title in the Finals against Avangard Omsk. If the Hawks have any plans on bringing him over to North America this may
be the time to do it.
|Jari Viuhkola||Karpat Finland 54 5+8=13 32 / 9 0+1=1 6|
Viuhkola spent most of his and Karpat’s first season in the SM-Liiga on the third and fourth line. As the season went along
he got more and more time on the third line and less on the fourth and he even made a couple of appearances on the top two
lines. Played on the penalty-killing unit on a regular basis. Viuhkola could have a hard time cracking the top two lines
next year as well but it all depends on the players returning.
|Pavel Vorobiev||Yaroslavl Russia 36 8+8=16 28 / 10 4+1=5 8|
The Hawks second pick of the 2000 draft had a great season with Yaroslavl in the Russian Superleague. He got plenty of
ice-time during the regular season and finished with 16 points (8+8) in 36 games after fading a bit after the new-year. In
the playoffs he had 4 goals and 1 assist in 10 games and played perhaps his best game of the season as he scored three times
in a 4-3 win over AK Bars in the first round. Played in three tournaments (including the WJC) with the Russian J20 team and
scored 8 points in 14 games. Finished the season by getting an invitation to the Russian National Team’s WHC training camp.
GM Mike Smith has stated that Vorobiev will most likely be brought over to the Hawks training camp this fall to see if the
is ready for the NHL.
|Mattias Wennerberg||Boden Sweden (2) 34 9+4=13 36|
Went from MoDo’s junior team to Boden (Allsvenskan) and instantly became a fan favorite with his physical play and hard
work. Scored 13 points (9+4) in 34 games which has to be ok considering this was his first season at the senior-level. Was
red-hot in the exhibition games before the WJC and went into the tournament as Team Sweden’s first-line center. Had an assist
in the first game but was injured in the second game as he went down to block a shot and took the puck in the face. Missed
6 weeks before he could return to Boden. Will try his talent in the Elite League next season as he has signed a deal to
return to MoDo.
|Mikhail Yakubov||Lada Russia 24 0+0=0 8 / 4 0+0=0 0|
Playing on one of the top teams in Russia (Lada) and being behind a number of veterans on the depth-chart did not help
Yakubov’s development as he finished with zero points in 24 games this season. Most of his appearances early on was on the
4th line but late in the season he found himself in the line-up on a more regular basis and got some time on the third line
and he played in all but one of Lada’s playoff games. Was not a member of the Russian J20 team early in the season but still
managed to get a spot on the WJC team and finished that tournament with one goal in seven games. Helped the Russian J19 team
win the S:t Petersburg Cup this month (April) as he scored two goals and two assists in four games. He needs to get more
ice-time next season and it will be interesting to see if he stays with Lada or ends up with another team.
Daniel Flodin is also the webmaster of www.futurehawks.com, a site dedicated
to Blackhawks prospects with daily updated prospect news, notes and much much more…