Draft flyers for Matvei Michkov, willing to wait until his KHL deal expires

Greg WochinskyESPNJune 28, 2023 at 10:45 p.m. ET4 minutes to read

Flyers GM: Matvey Michkov is a talent we can’t miss

Flyers general manager Daniel Breyer explains why Philadelphia couldn’t miss Matvey Michkov with the seventh pick.

NASHVILLE, Tennessee – Matvey Michkov got one wish when it was granted The Philadelphia Flyers selected him seventh in the 2023 NHL draft Wednesday night. But he has another desire for his NHL career: to honor his late father by lifting the Stanley Cup.

Meshkov’s father, Andrei, died in April at the age of 51, According to the Russian Hockey Federation.

Matvey Mechkov, an 18-year-old right winger who played for the Russian national team, was thinking of his late father as he donned a Flyers jersey for the first time.

“Right now, it’s important for me to finish the goal my dad had for me, which is to win the Stanley Cup,” he said through a translator.

Meshkov credits his father for developing his offensive game.

“A lot of the credit for my goal-scoring goes to my late father. He taught me the different ways of masking my shot. I think now he would be very proud and happy for me and all the work we put together and he said he would be proud of who I am.”

Meshkov was the most amazing player in the first round of the draft. Some scouts have claimed that the winger has the highest talent cap outside of Conor Bedard, who was drafted first overall by the Chicago Blackhawks.

Michkov had scored 16 points in seven games, including 12 goals, at the 2020-21 IIHF U18 World Junior Championships. He had 22 goals in 22 games in the Continental Hockey League’s Development League in 2021-22. In the last season in the KHL, he scored 20 points in 27 games, and he started the season at the age of 17.

Michkov ranks second behind center Leo Carlsson of Orebro HK in Sweden among European skaters by NHL Central Scouting. Carlson was drafted second overall by the Anaheim Ducks.

While he did not attend the NHL pool, Michkov met with select teams, fueling speculation that he was trying to maneuver his way to a specific landing spot. Meshkov denied that he had asked any team not to recruit him.

“No, no. I’ve spoken to every team,” he said. “I’ve never said those words before.”

What really made Meshkov an odd prospect in the draft: He may not play in the NHL until the 2026-27 season, since he’s under contract with the SKA St. Louis Cardinals.

Meshkov said he couldn’t say for sure when he would be able to jump to the NHL.

“If we have to wait, we’ll wait,” Flyers general manager Daniel Breyer said of the team’s decision to recruit Russian forward Matvey Michkov seventh overall. Michkov is contracted to SKA Saint Petersburg of the Kontinental Hockey League for the next three seasons.George Walker IV / AP

“I have a contract,” he said, “but I hope to come here as soon as I can get out.”

The pilots understood this situation when they formulated it.

“It is what it is,” said Flyers general manager Daniel Breyer. “We know he’s got a contract for three more seasons. But we felt after watching him play and meeting him, we felt he was a talent we couldn’t afford to miss. If we have to wait, we’ll wait.”

Meshkov was projected to be ranked second overall in the draft. But he wasn’t worried at all when he fell to seventh place.

“Not at all,” he said, “because I really wanted to be drafted by the Flyers. That was my goal.” “Being with the Philadelphia Flyers is a dream.”

Meshkov said he met with the Flyers twice and came away impressed by their organization, feeling the two sides “spoke the same language”.

Brier said he could sense that Metchkov had a close connection to the Flyers organization, too.

In fact, the Phenomenon wants to do something no one has been able to do in Philadelphia since 1975. For the Flyers. to his father.

“My biggest wish is to come to Philadelphia and want to help them win the Stanley Cup,” said Michkov. “I know they’ve been waiting for a long time.” “That’s my goal. That’s why I came here.”

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