Group A Observations
Group A was the second group to take the ice on Day 2, and arrival onto the ice was delayed over fifteen minutes because the coaching staff was unhappy with the ice conditions after Group B skated earlier in the morning. Of the Group A players, Eakin, Kuznetsov, and Orlov were by far the most impressive and polished. Kuznetsov was the class of the group, displaying noteworthy hustle and speed as well as solid shooting ability from the point and deft, light hands in close around the net. Two college invitees also showed flashes of brilliance. Sean Wiles, a junior forward from the University of Alaska Anchorage, threw his body around, landing several big hits and crashing the net well. Additionally, Andrew Cherniwchan, a sophomore forward from Northern Michigan University, put on a puckhandling show, leading Comcast Sports Net’s play-by-play announcer Joe Beninati, an unexpected visitor to camp, to label him a “dangler.”
Day 1 (View All Of Addison’s Photos)
Walking into Kettler Capitals Iceplex this morning, a chill flickered across my skin as I admired the clean sheet of ice that stretched in front of me; not only because the rink was 30-plus degrees cooler than the humid July air outside, but also because of the fresh start that this development camp represented. After the crushing first-round defeat in the 2010 playoffs that sent the Caps home early, development camp is the first milestone on the path to the 2010-2011 season. It seemed many other people had the same idea. During both sessions, there was a good number of spectators in the stands – probably 75 or so – definitely a good turnout for a weekday.
The goosebumps on my arms were complimented by butterflies in my stomach – as a rookie journalist, today I would be passing through the heavy metal gate separating players and press from the general public on the back side of the practice rink. After meeting the Caps PR staff and receiving my press pass, my nervousness abated somewhat, until about a minute later, when I walked into the press room and found myself surrounded by Tarik El-Bashir, Mike Vogel, Brett Leonhardt, Corey Masisak, Dan Steinberg, and all the other big name journalists who cover the Capitals.
Washington Capitals Defensive prospect Dmitri Orlov was named today the Russian Junior Hockey League’s best defenseman in April, while Maxim Kitsyn (who is eligible for the ’10 draft) was named the best forward. Per the translated MHL release by Fedor Fedin:
The Novokuznetsk Bears surprised both analysts and fans alike when they made it the MHL Finals. In the “Golden” series, Sergei Krasilnikov’s team was defeated by the Steel Foxes of Magnotogorsk – 1:3. However, the games of the final round got the biggest hullabaloo in Novokuznetsk for a very long time: spectators filled the Sports Hall completely.
18-year-old defensemam Dmitri Orlov, was one of the main heroes of the first Kharlamov Cup. He was named the best defenseman of the MHL semifinals and Finals. Orlov played securely on defense and was a force on offense during the playoffs: he scored 9 goals and earned 10 assists. In the points race he finished second. He lost by only one point to his teammate, forward Maxim Kitsyn.
The acting mayor of Novokuznetsk ,Valery Smolego, congratulated the Junior team. He said that “hockey should continue to develop in our town.” Players and coaches got credentials and bonuses. And now the team is on break. The Bears will start preparations for the new season on the 1st of July.
H/T to Dmitry Chesnokov for first alerting us via Twitter.
RMNB’s Fedor Fedin has followed Dmitri Orlov everywhere this year (including Siberia and even a Moscow Bathroom). Now that the Novokuznetsk Bears’ season has finally come to an end, Fedor’s here to provide a final review of the season-that-was for Orlov which includes some interesting quotes, statistics, photos and videos. Take it away, comrade!
First of all, we wanted to point you to the summary of Orlov’s KHL Regular season by Championat.ru:
For the three of you who follow Minor League Russian Hockey, you’re already aware that Caps Defensive Prospect Dmitri Orlov has led the Novokuznetsk Bears – the minor league affiliate of the KHL’s Metallurg Novokuznetsk – to this year’s MHL Finals. But what some of you may not know, is that the starting goaltender of the team, Sergey Bobrovsky, is Semyon Varlamov’s biggest rival in Russia. And sources in Novokuznetsk tell RMNB that Bobrovsky – now free of his Russian Contract – will sign a free agent deal with the Philadelphia Flyers and will play there next year.
Though it has largely flown under the radar in America, the impact of this deal could be huge. We consider it a coup for the Flyers and it could impact the Capitals/Flyers rivalry in the Eastern Conference for many years to come. Bobrovsky, at 21, has been Metallurg Novokuznetsk’s number one goalie for the past three years, and has managed to put up extremely strong numbers this season despite the fact he has been keeping for the KHL’s worst team.
Above Tatiana Ovechkina (left) sits with her son Alex (middle) many years ago.
Today, March 19th, is Tatiana Ovechkina’s 60th birthday. In celebration of the milestone, Soviet Sport’s Pavel Lysenkov phoned in from Russia to Alex Ovechkin’s home in DC and interviewed the Great Mother of the Great 8.
In the translated article below, Ovechkina discusses what she loves to cook for her sons, why she didn’t fly to Vancouver to watch Alex in the Olympic Games & if he’s completely gotten over the crushing loss to Canada.
Much like in the NHL, the KHL has farm teams. And since Metallurg Novokuznetsk failed to make the KHL Playoffs, the team decided to option their finest young defensive prospect, Caps 2009 2nd Round Draft Pick Dmitri Orlov, down to the MHL’s Novokuznetsk Bears. (Bears? Are you SERIOUS?!) And for those who are confused, the MHL is Russian for Molodyozhnaya Hockeynaya Liga or the Junior Hockey League. It’s exactly like the AHL, the only difference being that the MHL is for younger players only.
Anyways, lucky for us, Fedor translated an exclusive interview between Andrey Osadchenko and Dmitri Orlov. Below the jump, Dmitri talks about being the highest scoring MHL Defenseman for the month of February, what it was like to miss the playoffs, and why he picked the number 9.
[Ed. Note: Capitals fans, humor us. With this post, we’re just going to come out and say it: We here at RMNB are trying to build unrealistic expectations and create buckets full of hype for Capitals Defensive Prospect Dmitri Orlov. He’s currently playing over in Mother Russia in the KHL, but that hasn’t stopped us from keeping tabs on him. Fedor checks in with video of one of his more uhhh, let’s say, easy goals. Also, if you haven’t already, please check out our Getting to know Orlov Post & our post with updates on all the former Capitals Players playing in the KHL.]
Last night, I received an e-mail from my friend Evgeni Starikov, who is a huge fan of Metallurg Novokuznetsk. What did he tell me?
Basically, he gushed over Caps 2009 second-round pick and fellow Russian Dmitri Orlov and told me for maybe the 100th time that he’s been pretty awesome this season. Orlov’s been averaging 15:47 of ice time this year and has scored 4 goals already. In his last three games, he’s averaged 18:00 of ice time.
The last goal he scored was in game against Avtomobilist last night that was actually pretty funny. Please, please, please check it out the video here. (Fast forward in the video to 1:30. Orlov is #9)
Metallurg, his current club, won the match 4:0 and goalie Denis Franskevich was god awful. Orlov’s goal was the first of the night for Metallurg.
Another funny goal (not Orlov’s) came at 4:50 of the video.
Pretty nice for one of the worst teams in the KHL, isn’t it?
We finally have another update from Fedor Fedin. It’s been awhile, but it’s for good reason. Since the KHL is about to wrap up the first half of it’s current season, we gave Fedor the tall task of tracking down every KHL player with any Washington Capital ties and asked him to let us know how they’ve been doing – good or bad. So basically if a guy has played for the Capitals in the past (Andrei Nikolishin), played on one of our AHL Affiliated Teams (Brandon Sugden), or been drafted by the team (Dmitri Orlov), they’re on the list. We thought this was a good idea because we honestly miss some of our favorite erstwhile Caps from the past like: Viktor Kozlov, Sergei Fedorov, Richard Zednik, and Chris Simon, and thought this would be a great opportunity for everyone to get caught up. Sadly, that human-ball-of-waste known as Jaromir Jagr is on the list, too, but since he’s one of Fedor’s favorite players on Avangard Omsk, we’re going to let it slide.
Anyways, below the fold is a huge table full of stats and information on all the Former Caps in the KHL.
For the elitist few of you who have the NHL Network (the Russian Machine hates you and your fancy Cable options), you’ve had the opportunity to watch the WJC, or the World Junior Hockey Championships. It’s basically an annual event organized by the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) which showcases some of the best under-20 players from around the world.
Our beloved Washington Capitals are lucky enough to have 4 players representing them in the tournament this year. The prestigious list includes awesome 2008 First Round Draft Pick John Carlson (USA), 2008 7th Round Draft Pick and Japers Rink favorite Stefan Della Rovere (Canada), 2009 First Round Pick Marcus Johannson (Sweeden), and this post’s namesake 2009 Second Round Draft Pick Dmitri Orlov.
Despite the fact our dear Ruskies were upset in OT by Switzerland 3-2 in the Quarter-Finals Saturday afternoon and were eliminated, we figured it was as good a time as any to ask our resident Translator & Moscow native Fedor Fedin to dig up some information on the relatively unknown 18 year old Orlov. Here’s what he found out:
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