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Photo Credit: Terry Wilson/OHL Images

All About Dmitri Samorukov

Drafted in the third round of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, Dmitri Samorukov has been an interesting prospect to follow. The 6’2″ Russian defender has spent the last couple of years accustomizing himself to the North American game and possesses the type offensive instincts that the Oilers and their fanbase are looking for while also having the potential to develop a useful piece for the future. With his entry-level contract signed and his first taste of pro hockey under his belt, the future looks bright for Dmitri Samorukov, however, it’s important to remember that this is still a very young defender that will need more time to fully realize his potential. That being said, he is definitely a prospect worth keeping your eyes on. 

BIO:

Position: Defence — Shoots: Left
Born: June 16th, 1999 — City: Volgograd, Russia
Height: 6 feet 02 inches — Weight: 180 lbs [188 cm/82 kg]
Drafted: 84th overall (third round) in 2017
Junior Team: Guelph Storm — League: OHL

NEWS AND SCOUTING REPORTS

JD Burke profiled Samorukov for Oilersnation ahead of the 2017-18 season:

The physical tools are there. Samorukov can deliver a bone-crushing hit, play a good gap in the neutral zone and take advantage of holes in the opposition defence whenever they present themselves. He just hasn’t been able to do that consistently. Not yet, anyway. When he can put the full package together, he might not be as far away from the NHL as he seems at first glance.

Dustin Nielson listed Samorukov at #10 in his post-draft list of the best Oilers prospects in the system:

I haven’t had an opportunity to see a lot of Samorukov but when I have watched him I like what I’ve seen. I’d hope to see a bit of a jump in his play over the next couple of seasons as he now has two years under his belt on the smaller ice surface. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to think he could develop into a bottom-pairing guy.

Sam Cosentino broke down Samorukov’s talents ahead of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft:

Great things were expected of Samorukov when he was picked second overall in the 2016 CHL Import Draft. Playing on a rebuilding Guelph team, Samorukov was thrown into the fire, competing nightly in the toughest division in all the CHL. He showed durability, missing just one regular season game, and that’s important to note as he brings a physical element. Not afraid to support the rush or shoot the puck, there is some offensive upside to his game. He’s much more fluid skating backward than forward, but that is a skill he will continue to develop. Having participated for Russia on several occasions, his best international performance was his latest one, winning bronze for Russia at the world U-18s.

From Last Word on Sports:

Samorukov has immense skill, but his game is very inconsistent and there are some issues to work on. If he is able to develop better shot accuracy, he could be a very valuable asset on the power play. Samorukov must also learn to pick his spots to push offense five on five, and work on his defensive game. If he can get that under control he could be a top pairing defenceman. Dmitry Samorukov is a real boom-or-bust prospect. In terms of a comparison, his game is reminiscent of Dion Phaneuf of the Ottawa Senators. This is a style comparison only though, and not a talent based one.

Back in October of 2016, Jeff Marek from Sportsnet looked at Samorukov heading into his draft year:

Has a bomb from the point and good size to go with offensive instincts. Loves the big hit in the middle of the ice and is business like in his approach to development. Major upside potential here.

PRE-DRAFT RANKINGS

  • ISS: Unranked
  • McKeen’s Hockey: Unranked
  • Bob McKenzie: Unranked (Mid-season)
  • Craig Button: Unranked
  • Jeff Marek: 22nd
  • Future Considerations: 86th

VIDEO AND HIGHLIGHTS

As we’ve seen all summer long, Edmonton Future Watch put together a wonderful compilation of highlights from his 2017-18 season:

Samorukov jumped up into the play to score a wonderfully timed goal against the Sarnia Sting:

Samorukov’s post-draft interview:

Samorukov scores an absolute laser from the point against the Erie Otters:

SEASON STATS

SEASON TEAM LEAGUE GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM +/-
2014-15 CSKA Moskva U16 Russia U16 28 5 17 22 58
Russia U16 (all) International-Jr 12 1 4 5 2
2015-16 CSKA Moskva U17 Russia U17 28 4 12 16 26
Krasnaya Armiya Moskva MHL 3 0 1 1 0 2
Russia U17 WHC-17 6 2 0 2 18
Russia U18 WJC-18 5 1 4 5 2 0
2016-17 Guelph Storm OHL 67 4 16 20 41 -24
Russia U18 “A” WJC-18 7 1 4 5 6 2
2017-18 Guelph Storm OHL 62 11 23 34 29 -10 6 0 2 2 6 -7
Bakersfield Condors AHL 5 0 2 2 2 2
Russia U20 WJC-20 5 0 1 1 4 -3
Russia U20 (all) International-Jr 9 1 3 4 4

TOURNAMENT STATS

SEASON TEAM LEAGUE GP G A TP PIM +/-
2014-15 Dynamo Moskva U16  Russia U16 Finals 6 0 2 2 4
2016-17 Russia U18 Hlinka Gretzky Cup 5 0 2 2 16 1
2017-18 Russian Selects U20 Jr Super Series 2 1 1 2 0 2

Stats provided by Elite Prospects

Previously:

  • OriginalPouzar

    Very nice prospect – miles to go though.

    I didn’t get the opportunity to see him much last year (just one game and bits and pieces of others) but, from accounts, he didn’t have a great season in the defensive end and lost a bit of the physicality he had shown in the past.

    He had a nice offensive season when you take in to account he was blocked by Ryan Merkley and Garrett McFadden.

    He actually had more even strength points than McFadden but received little PP time. McFadenn is graduating to the pro game so there should be more of an opportunity for Samorukov now – he should see more minutes and more PP minutes. I look for him to take a step forward defensively and lead the team in their own zone (its going to be a young defence on Guelph).

    One plus to mention is that he had a great World Juniors for Russia – while the Russian team disappointed, Samorukov worked his way up the depth chart and was top pairing for the end of the tournament. He should be a leader on the Russian defense for this year’s tournament.

    • OriginalPouzar

      Defence of the future is:

      Klefbom and Nurse anchoring the left side

      Larsson and Bouchard anchoring the right side

      All of four of those d-men are 25 and under – Larsson and Klefbom are about to enter their prime and Nurse and Bouchard still years away from theirs.

      We have the following prospects developing to help fill out the roster going forward:

      Left Side: Lagesson, Jones, Samorukov
      Right Side: Bear, Berglund, Kemp

      Thing will be good long term on the defensive side.

        • BringJordanHome

          If both Bear and Bouchard makes the NHL and they still have Klefbom, Larsson, Nurse and Russel today in say 2 years then Bennings time as a top six defenseman is probably over if he stays with the Oilers. I don’t know about you but IMO Bear has the potential at becoming a better overall defenseman than Benning and if he reaches it it’ll be hard for Benning to stay in the lineup.

        • OriginalPouzar

          I forgot to include Benning but he would be in the mix for rounding out the right side defence.

          Davidson isn’t an Oiler and I don’t see him as part of the Oilers in the medium term even if we do sign him this year (which is what I was projecting).