After focusing on talented offensive defenseman Anthony Deangelo last time, we decided to move the search back up front. DOY didn’t travel far, either, settling on Deangelo’s talented and equally enigmatic teammate, Nikolai Goldobin.
Nikolai Goldobin, RW
5’11”, 180 lbs
ISS Ranking: 26
Goldobin’s profile matches that of the other prospects whom the Bruins will be considering when they reach the podium in Philadelphia. Namely, he’s a supremely talented kid with a first round grade…who also has some red flags. It’s definitely a recurring theme this year, but it could be considered somewhat of a luxury for a team like Boston. While other teams will need ‘safe’ players or ones to contribute sooner rather than later, deeper teams like the Bruins can take gambles, knowing that the pressure for a #25 pick to produce isn’t nearly as high as one taken in the lottery stages. They can look at that steaming pile of shit in the road, polish it up, and hopefully have a….
No, that doesn’t work. Diamond in the rough…we’ll just use that. The Bruins can find a diamond in the rough.
Goldobin is on par with the most offensively capable players in this draft. He’s scored 30+ goals in each of his two seasons with the Sting of the OHL, including 38 in 67 games this past season. He also finished with 56 assists, combining for 94 points to pace his moribund team and finish 7th overall in the OHL. From an individual skill standpoint, he’s an elite skater with incredible hands. He earned high marks at the Top Prospects game for his performance in the acceleration tests, in particular. One name that is often used for comparing Goldobin is Nail Yakupov, which is a good indicator of the type of offensive talent this kid possesses.
On the down side, this kid is often compared to Nail Yakupov. He’s just not interested in playing defense. Also, he shows the same overall moodiness that Yakupov does. He’ll go from a manic high from scoring a big goal to general malaise if he’s not allowed to do his thing. Simply put, he’s hockey’s version of an emo kid. Therein lies the gamble with Goldobin – do you select him at #25, hoping you keep that tantalizing offensive ability while learning him some defense? Or do you label him as a one-dimensional headcase and let some other team take the risk?
Edmonton has learned that Nail Yakupov at #1 overall is looking like somewhat of a bust. But, surrounded by superior talent and a superior team, are those skills worth it at #25? I’m not opposed to seeing it happen.