Kirill Kaprizov

Hometown:

Novokuznetsk Russia

Currently Playing In:

Europe

Birthday:

1997-04-26

Position:

LW

Eligible for draft:

2015

Shoots:

Left

Drafted:

2015

Height:

5-10

Acquired:

5th round (135th overall), 2015

Weight:

181 lbs.

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History

2012-13: Kirill Kaprizov skated for the Metallurg Novokuznetsk 1997’s in the Sibir region in Russia. In six Sibir Region playoff games he scored 3 goals with 5 assists and 2 penalty minutes. Metallurg competed in the Russia U16 championship, finishing eighth. Kaprizov scored 3 goals with 5 assists and was -4 with 2 penalty minutes in four games.

2013-14: Kaprizov skated for Kuznetskie Medvedi in Russia’s U22 league (MHL) as a 16-year-old. The team’s fourth-leading scorer, he scored 18 goals with 16 assists in 52 regular season games and was +4 with 30 penalty minutes. Kuznetskie finished sixth in the Ural-Sibir Division and advanced to the East Conference semifinals, falling to Ak Bars Kazan in three straight games. Kaprizov scored 1 goal with 2 assists and was +1 with 2 penalty minutes in eight playoff games. He was taken by Metallurg Novokuznetsk with the first overall pick in the 2015 KHL Draft.

2014-15: Kaprizov played for the Russia U18 team at the 2014 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament before returning to Novokuznetsk for his first KHL season. He played for the Russia U19 team at the 2014 World Junior A Challenge in Canada and was an assistant captain for the Russia U18 at the 2015 World Juniors in April. He played 31 games for Metallurg Novokuznetsk as a rookie, scoring 4 goals with 4 assists and finishing -4 with 6 penalty minutes. Metallurg was fifth in the Chernyshev Division, missing the KHL playoffs. Kaprizov played six games with Kuznetskie in the MHL, including three playoff games, and was -2 with 2 assists and 2 penalty minutes. He scored 2 goals with 1 assist and no penalties in five games for Russia at the WJAC. Russia finished third, defeating Canada East, 2-0 in the bronze medal game. Kaprizov scored 5 goal with 2 assists in five games at the Ivan Hlinka Tournament. He scored 1 goal with 3 assists and had an even plus/minus with 2 penalty minutes in four games at the 2015 U18 WJC. Russia finished fifth, falling to host Switzerland, 5-0, in the quarterfinals. Kaprizov was ranked 29th amongst international skaters in the Central Scouting final rankings and was selected by Minnesota in the fifth round (135th overall) in the 2015 NHL Draft.

2015-16: Kaprizov led Novokuznetsk Metalurg in scoring as an 18-year-old in his second KHL season and played for Russia in the 2016 World Junior Championship. He scored 11 goals with 16 assists in 53 games and was -4 with 10 penalty minutes. Novokuznetsk finished last in the Chernyshev Division, winning just 14 of 60 games (fewest in the league). Kaprizov scored 1 goal with 2 assists and was -2 with 2 penalty minutes for second-place Russia at the World Juniors. Russia reached the gold medal game against host Finland, falling 4-3 in overtime. 

Talent Analysis

A smallish forward with soft hands and good wheels, Kaprizov showed that he can play pro hockey, although he still needs to progress and improve in many areas of the game. His size isn’t the greatest, either, so at this point, in spite of his great skills and good hockey sense, he is still a long shot. That being said, he has the potential to become a scoring line player in the NHL, considering his offensive awareness, scoring touch and nose for the net..

Future

Kaprizov led Metallurg Novokuznetsk in scoring in 2015-16. He will transfer to Salavat Yulaev Ufa this coming season and is signed with the KHL club until 2017-18. Eligible to play for Russia in the 2017 World Juniors, he will likely keep developing in the KHL until he is NHL-ready. His lack of stature is a concern but Kaprizov projects as an effective playmaking forward.

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