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Top 25 Under 25, #25: Igor Shvyryov, the International man of mystery

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The Colorado Avalanche hope they struck gold in the 5th round with Igor Shvyryov

The Top 25 Under 25 is a collaboration by members of the Mile High Hockey writing staff. Our writers, plus a special vote from the readers, ranked players under the age of 25 as of September 1, 2017 in the Colorado Avalanche organization. Each participant used their own metric of current ability and production against future projection to rank each player. Now, we’ll count down each of the 25 players ranked

When a team spends a draft pick on an over age Russian player that hasn't played internationally in years, you know what kind of faith they have in their European scouts - for better or worse. The Colorado Avalanche selected Igor Shvyryov 125th overall in this past June’s draft, and clearly, the front office was relying heavily on Miroslav Zalesak when making the pick.

Playing in Russia’s second-tier MHL for most of last season, Shvyryov was not a part of Russia’s World Junior team so many over in North America know very little about the 19-year old center.

Shvyryov is a 6’, 205lbs playmaking center that was passed over in his first year of draft eligibility but this year was ranked 23rd among European skaters by NHL Central Scouting. This is what Steve Kournianos had to say going into the draft:

One of Russia’s top young talents who was Stalnye Lisy’s first line center and scoring leader, Shvyryov is arguably Europe’s most talented draft-eligible playmaker. work needed to get him to leave Russia for North America is part of what keeps him relatively obscure — he was kept off Central Scouting’s rankings despite being one of the MHL’s top point and assist producers. Shvyryov is a dynamic offensive player with excellent vision and hockey sense, and he’s deadly in odd-man situations. He has very good straight-line speed and can hammer the puck with accuracy, plus he’s defensively responsible and won 56 percent of over 1000 faceoffs. Stalnye Lisy relied on him for every key moment, and their power play was humming thanks to Shvyryov’s stickhandling, patience and ability to draw penalty killers away from the middle of the ice.

By all accounts, there are huge doubts that Shvyryov will ever come to North America - and if it were more likely, he probably would have been drafted a lot higher. As of right now, the Avs hold his rights for 4 years and he should be viewed as nothing more than a long-term lottery ticket.

If he has a good start to the season in the KHL, there’s a possibility that we will get a chance to see Shvyryov play over here as either a member of the Russian team for the CHL Canada/Russia Series or for the World Junior Championships in Buffalo.

By all accounts, Shvyryov is a very talented player, he is great with the puck, as incredible vision and has the potential to be a dynamic playmaker at the next level. That said, he is more than a long shot to ever play for the Avs. The fact that he made the top-25 list is more an indictment on the depth of the talent level within the organization than anything else.

Igor Shvyryov Career Statistics

Season Team League GP G A TP PIM
Season Team League GP G A TP PIM
2014-2015 Metallurg Magnitogorsk U17 Russia U17 Finals 6 8 6 14 10
Metallurg Magnitogorsk U17 Russia U17 32 33 66 99 38
Stalnye Lisy Magnitogorsk MHL 19 1 7 8 2
Russia U17 (all) International-Jr 3 0 0 0 0
2015-2016 Metallurg Magnitogorsk KHL 1 0 0 0 0
Stalnye Lisy Magnitogorsk MHL 44 12 26 38 40
Russia U18 Hlinka Memorial 5 0 1 1 4
2016-2017 Metallurg Magnitogorsk KHL 10 0 0 0 2
Stalnye Lisy Magnitogorsk MHL 40 21 49 70 26
2017-2018 Metallurg Magnitogorsk KHL - - - - -