With their first of two fourth-round picks in the 2019 draft, the Toronto Maple Leafs have selected 5’10, 161-pound center Mikhail Abramov of the QMJHL’s Victoriaville Tigers.
Abramov tallied 54 points in 62 games in the Q this season before adding another seven points in eight playoff games for Victoriaville. At the Hlinka tournament in August, Abramov piled up seven points in five games.
Abramov is described as a skilled and creative playmaker with high-end vision, good skating ability, an under-utilized shot, and a good work ethic at both ends of the rink. He also featured on both sides of special teams for Victoriaville. The Moskva, Russia native gained more confidence in his shot as the QMJHL season progressed, scoring 13 of his 16 goals in the second half of the 2018-19 campaign.
Mikhail Abramov is one of the QMJHL's most creative playmakers. He's so patient and crafty, cutting back and handling to open up the perfect lane. Can dish off the backhand. Completes high-end plays with pace. Impressed with the Leafs draft so far. pic.twitter.com/4KRx3uQk6u
— Mitch Brown (@MitchLBrown) June 22, 2019
Unsurprisingly, at 5’10 and 160, Abramov’s strength is an area in need of improvement, but there is plenty of upside to dream on here. This is the Leafs‘ second selection of an undersized, high-skill forward out of the CHL in their first three picks after the selection of Nick Robertson out of Peterborough in the second round.
Director of Amateur Scouting John Lilley on Mikhail Abramov
Skilled. Very skilled. He had a good Ivan Hlinka this summer, a good year in Victoriaville. A good playmaker who works hard. He had a good year on a young team.
Mikhail Abramov Scouting Reports
From MLHS’ Kevin Papetti:
Abramov scored seven points in five games back at the Hlinka, then became his team’s third-leading scorer as a QMJHL rookie. He’s a decent skater who can help his team in transition, but he needs to get stronger and work on his shot. He’s a talented playmaker, and while he’s a little bit iffy defensively at the moment, he could take another big step forward once he gets stronger.
He’s an above-average skater with average top speed, but has agility on his skates. Once he adds some mass to his frame, his speed will improve. His best attribute remains his hockey sense. He is a very smart hockey player at both ends of the ice and has a good compete level… He has value as player that can be useful on the penalty kill for his team, as he possesses a great mix of hustle and anticipation, which makes him good shorthanded.
… His wrist shot is pretty good, as it has good accuracy and can get off pretty quickly. He can pick corners if he has enough time to shoot it. On the power play, he likes to play from the half-wall on the right side of the ice. He has good poise with the puck, and as the season advanced, he became not only a threat to make great passes to his teammates, but also dangerous with his shot, firing pucks from the faceoff circle. Abramov will need to get stronger physically. This will make him even tougher to handle along the wall, and he would win more puck battles as well. There was a nice progression in his game this season.
Mikhail Abramov Statistics
|2016-17||CSKA Moskva U16||Russia U16||31||20||35||55||30||||
|2017-18||CSKA Moskva U17||Russia U17||27||21||34||55||2||||
|CSKA Moskva U18||Russia U18||8||10||7||17||8||||
|Russia U17 (all)||International-Jr||6||4||3||7||4||||
|Russia U18 (all)||International-Jr||5||1||6||7||2||||