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2022 Draft Prospect Profile: Pavel Mintyukov has a lot of upside

It’s that time of year again! We’re two days away from the first round of the 2022 NHL Entry Draft, on Thursday, July 7. The Columbus Blue Jackets will be picking at #6 and #12.

Pavel Mintyukov

Position: D
Team: Saginaw Spirit (OHL)
Date of Birth: November 25, 2003
Birthplace: Moskva, Russia
Height: 6’1”
Weight: 192 lbs
Shoots: Left


Ranked #10 by FCHOCKEY
Ranked #12 by TSN/BOB McKENZIE
Ranked #11 by MCKEEN’S HOCKEY
Ranked #11 by TSN/CRAIG BUTTON
Ranked #6 by NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING (NA Skaters)
Ranked #17 by SPORTSNET
Ranked #13 by ISS HOCKEY
Ranked #26 by SMAHT SCOUTING

2021-22 Stats

Games Played: 67
Goals: 17
Assists: 45
Points: 62
PIM: 28
Plus/Minus: -14

Mintyukov is an intriguing defensive prospect that could go in the top ten or slip to later in the first round. He’s strong for his age and plays with a lot of physicality and aggression. He put up very good numbers in the OHL last season and was nearly a point per game player. He projects as a two-way, top four defenseman with a top pair upside.

If Jarmo is dead set on taking a defenseman with one of his first rounders, keep an eye on Mintyukov. I’m not a fan of picking an LHD since there are already a good number in the pipeline for the Blue Jackets, but the upside is undeniable with this player. Jarmo has also shown that he’s not afraid of picking Russian players with high picks.

Scouting Reports

Mintyukov is an exciting defenseman. He plays with pace and is aggressive as a rusher. His skating allows him to evade pressure easily and transition pucks up ice with his feet. Mintyukov is also highly skilled and can make plays through legs and sticks. He shows good offensive IQ, knowing when to activate and how to make plays with the puck. He also has a hard point shot, making him dangerous on the PP with his skating and vision. Defensively he’s solid, showing an ability to use his long reach, mobility and physicality to kill plays. He can be a little too aggressive at times trying to create offense when he leaves his defensive position. He projects as a top-four defenseman with the potential to play high in the lineup. – Corey Pronman, The Athletic

Part of why Mintyukov is so productive offensively is how aggressive he is with his activations. I’ve seen him chase down his own dump-ins in the offensive zone — successfully. He led the forecheck on more than one occasion this season. He hangs onto pucks and protects them extremely well which helps him in that regard while having a polished and powerful skating stride to carry him through checks and across all three lines. Despite his offensive aggressiveness, he is almost always the first player back when things go south and the puck ends up on the opponent’s stick. His defensive stick is solid, closing gaps with the same aggressiveness that sees him end up behind the opponent’s goalie offensively. His angles of approach, his adaptive edgework, and his tendency to defend while skating forwards make him a tremendous rush suppressor, and he picks up on threats well in his own zone. – Hadi Kalakeche, Dobber Prospects

With Pavel Mintyukov’s size, raw tools (including puck skill and passing ability), four-way agility, and deceptive maneuvering around the blue line: it’s hard not to see a lottery selection on that assessment alone. There are not many players in this draft class that have the ability to operate in the offensive zone from the backend like Mintyukov can. Add in his ability to suffocate space and his mobility to keep a tight gap: he’s an attractive asset in the 2022 draft. – Austin Garrett, Smaht Scouting