3. Egor Afanasyev, Milwaukee Admirals, AHL
We’ve been awaiting the NHL arrival of the supremely talented Egor Afanasyev ever since his draft date in 2019 as the second round, 45th overall pick by the Nashville Predators.
Afanasyev’s size and scoring ability has always made him one of the top upcoming prospects for the Predators. He remains firmly on my list of prospects next in line becuase his ceiling is very high to eventually become a 20-plus goal, 50-plus point scorer.
According to DobberProspects.com, Afanasyev carries an NHL Certainty rating of 7.5 on a scale of 1 to 10. With that said, he’s not tearing up the AHL this season with his goal scoring. He’s doing other things well on the ice, but his scoring is lower than I’d like to see at seven goals in 44 games for the Admirals.
This is Afanasyev’s first season in the AHL after getting the bulk of his development in the OHL, where he terrorized opposing teams with his scoring, and briefly in the KHL and VHL last season.
There were even rumblings that Afanasyev should be on the initial starting roster for the Predators way back at the beginning of this season. Seems to me it was the right decision to give him a full season of development with the Admirals, and revisit his NHL readiness in the next training camp for 2022-23.