Welcome back to Top Shelf Prospects, the daily column that brings you the next crop of professional hockey players. Each day I will bring you a new player profile or topical article in the lead-up to the 2020 NHL Draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow me on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical and critical profiles and scouting reports! Last Word On Hockey Prospects is your new headquarters for everything “NHL Draft”! We have a complete listing of our draft articles here. Today we look at Maxim Groshev.
Russian forward Maxim Groshev spent the majority of the season playing against men in the KHL. He put up one goal and six assists for seven points in 36 games for Nizhnekamsk Neftekhimik. Groshev also played in three playoff games without recording a point. Playing for Reaktor Nizhnekamsk in the MHL, he put up two goals and three assists for five points in eight games. Groshev also represented his country at the World Juniors but did not score in the tournament. He played a bottom-line role in helping the team to a silver medal. He also played in the Canada-Russia Super Series, picking up two goals and an assist for three points in six games.
In 2018-19, Groshev spent most of the season in the MHL. He scored seven goals and 13 assists for 20 points in 47 games. He also played three games in the Russian U18 League, putting up one goal and five points. Groshev played for Russian at the IIHF Under-18 World Championships. He scored three goals and four points in seven games, winning silver. Groshev also had two goals and three points in six games at the World Junior A Challenge.
Maxim Groshev Scouting Report
Right Wing/Left Wing — shoots Left
Born December 14th, 2001 — Agryz, Russia
Height 6’2″ — Weight 194 lbs [188 cm / 88 kg]
Groshev’s skating is a bit hit or miss. He shows good speed, especially when he has a chance to get going. His first few steps could really use some work, but as long as he keeps his feet moving, he has decent acceleration. Groshev could also work on making tighter turns and working on his crossovers so that he does not lose speed thought them. His lateral mobility is decent and he can use it to get away from defenders, both with and without the puck. Groshev uses a wide stride. This gives him a low centre of gravity. However he needs a stronger lower body in order to improve his balance and make him tougher to knock off the puck. While Groshev is willing to battle along the boards or in front of the net, he is a bit too easy to be pushed over at this point.
Groshev plays a prototypical power forward style of game. He can score goals with a strong wrist shot and a quick release. His shot is accurate as well as powerful. He is also good at getting to the front of the net, where he can score on rebounds, bang in passes from teammates and get deflections. Groshev establishes his position in front of the net but needs to get stronger in order to fight off defenders looking to move him out of position. He has the smarts to find soft spots in the defence, away from a checker. He is also good on the forecheck, forcing defenders into mistakes.
Groshev can also play the role of a playmaker. He can control the puck down low with his stickhandling and protect it in the cycle game. This will improve as he gets stronger. His ability to maintain possession gives teammates the opportunity to get open and when they do, he has the vision and passing skills to get the puck to the front of the net. The main question with respect to his offensive game is one of consistency. Groshev shows all of these skills in flashes. However, he needs to do them consistently in order to be able to put up bigger numbers. While it’s true that limited ice-time is one reason his KHL numbers don’t jump off the page, he really has not dominated against his peers either.
Groshev shows his hard work in the defensive zone as well. He is willing to support the defence with effective backpressure against the rush as well as supporting the defence down low. Groshev is effective in chasing down the puck carrier, playing physical, and also using his stick to knock pucks away from his opponent. He is good at maintaining his position as well as cutting down passing and shooting lanes. Once a turnover is created, Groshev looks to move the puck up the ice quickly.
Projection and Comparison
Groshev could be a sleeper prospect in this draft. He has some high-end skills and works hard in all three zones. However, he doesn’t seem to get the production that should accompany those skills. As he continues to get stronger that may come. According to Eliteprospects.com Groshev is signed in Russia through the end of the 2020-21 season. His new team should try to get him to come to the AHL at this point. Groshev’s game is reminiscent of Timo Meier, however, this is a stylistic comparison only and not one based on skill and potential.
The following is a compilation of some of the highlight packages and features of Maxim Groshev that are available on youtube and twitter.
Maxim Groshev gives Russia the lead! Third time's the charm. pic.twitter.com/pyZyfHrHIL
— Lauren Kelly (@laurkelly24) November 6, 2019
#CHL: Heady play by the kid LW Maxim Groshev (Ranked No. 46) as he races with speed for a shot then whistles a no-hesitation feed that is tipped home beautifully by C Lev Komissarov (2020/2000). Russia’s youngest kids have been consistent all series. pic.twitter.com/H9IwPErASh
— Steve Kournianos (@TheDraftAnalyst) November 15, 2019
— Steven Ellis (@StevenEllisTHN) December 23, 2019
— Patrik Bexell (@Zeb_Habs) November 18, 2019
— Dennis Schellenberg (@ScoutingFactory) April 28, 2019
— Steve Kournianos (@TheDraftAnalyst) April 20, 2019
— Steven Ellis (@StevenEllisTHN) April 18, 2019
— Dennis Schellenberg (@ScoutingFactory) October 20, 2019
— Joshua (@usetheboards) October 20, 2019
Check back tomorrow for the next prospect on our draft board.
Maxim Groshev Main Photo Courtesy of KHL.ru