2015-16 Team: Windsor Spitfires (#31)
Date of birth: June 25th, 1998
Place of birth: Nizhnekamsk, Russia
Ht: 6’2″ Wt: 220 lbs
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2016 1st year eligible
THW The Next Ones Ranking (June): 10
- THW War Room Rankings: 9
- ISS: 10
- Future Considerations: 9
- Bob Mckenzie (TSN): 9
- Craig Button (TSN): 8
- HockeyProspect.com: 8
- Pike’s Picks: 8
- Consensus: 8
Mikhail Sergachev was born in Nizhnekamsk, Russia, where he started playing hockey for the local Neftekhimik, just as Nail Yakupov and Bogdan Yakimov, or Pavel Valentenko should we wish to go a little further back. In 2012, Sergachev moved westwards, spending two years within the Vityaz Podolsk organization. Playing in Podolsk, Sergachev was called to the national team of his group age where he was one of the top players since the very first games.
After spending two very good seasons playing for Vityaz, Sergachev moved to Kazan, getting closer to home and started playing in the MHL for Irbis, affiliate of KHL team Ak Bars. Playing in Kazan, Sergachev cemented his role as a key player for the national team and he played 25 games in the MHL, scoring two goals and eight points. He also skated in 17 games for the national team, helping Team Russia win two gold medals at the U17 WHC and at the EYOF. His play was so good that he was called to Team Russia to skate at the U18 IIHF WJC, in spite of being one year younger. However, the tournament was bad for the Russians, who lost to Switzerland at the quarterfinals.
In the summer, the Russian Ice Hockey Federation announced to have decided to put the U18 national team in the MHL, and he initially gave his availability to the team’s head coach. However, he instead opted to move overseas to skate in the OHL with the Windsor Spitfires, which drafted him with the sixth overall pick at the 2015 CHL Import Draft. His first season in North America was a triumph for Sergachev, who amassed many accolades such as the Max Kaminsky Trophy as the league’s top defenseman and being called to the annual CHL Top Prospects game. He represented Team Russia again at the U18s, but once again the Russians had different problems and ended up out of medals.
In the OHL, Sergachev, whose surname is also spelled out as Sergachyov due to the different IIHF standards, developed his game very well, adding some bulk and defensive awareness, continuing on improving his offensive zone play.
NHL Draft Projection:
Sergachev’s stock has been rising for the whole season and, certainly, he wouldn’t rank that high should he have played in Russia last year. He is most likely going to be a top 10 pick.
A big minute-munching blueliner who has that nice combination of size and wheels that make NHL scouts take notice. He is a feisty, mobile defenseman that can beat you with his quick first step or a solid pass. Shows nice composure when pressed in his own zone and does not panic but instead skates with the puck or will just rim it out safely. Plays it physical stepping up for the big hit and likes to physically eliminate opponents from danger areas in the defensive zone. Has a strong point shot and the ability to run a power play. High NHL upside with this kid.
A dominant two-way defenceman whose tenacity and competitiveness characterize his style of play. Plays with a poise and confidence that facilitates his creativity with the puck as well as split-second decision making. Naturally fluid skater who is always looking to be engaged, if not the center, of each unfolding play. All-in-all, a diligent two-way defenceman who excels at finding ways to be a difference-maker in games.
Curtis Joe, Elite Prospects
Mikhail Sergachev can do it all in both ends of the rink. He is good with the puck on his stick, showing stickhandling poise and great passing skill. He effectively starts the rush with good breakout passes, and can also break down the defence with good passes on the power play. He has high-end hockey IQ, and makes the smart play with the puck on his stick. Sergachev has a strong slap shot and an effective wrist shot, both of which he can use to score from the blueline. He keeps the puck low and gets it on net, even through heavy traffic, allowing his teammates to set-up screens, get tip-ins, and pounce on rebounds. Sergachev’s offensive game is among the best of any blueliner in this draft class, and he could be a power play quarterback in the NHL in just a few short years.
Ben Kerr, Last Words on Sport
- Excellent skating
- Passing game
- Very good shot
- Vision of the ice
Under Construction (Improvements to Make):
- Positional game
- Can still add some bulk
- Needs to mature his game
Mikhail Sergachev has all the tools to become a No. 1 defenseman in the NHL thanks to his combination of skills in both the offensive and defensive zones. He can see the ice very well and this is one of his best traits that will help him to adapt to the more demanding pro game.
Risk = 2/5 Reward = 5/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential:
Offensive = 8.5/10 Defensive = 7.5/10
- 2014-2015 EYOF Gold Medal
- 2014-2015 U17 WHC Gold Medal
- 2015-2016 OHL Max Kaminsky Trophy
- 2015-2016 OHL First All-Star Team
- 2015-2016 OHL First All-Rookie Team
Sergachev was the second Russian player to win the Max Kaminsky Trophy after Alexey Semenov won it in 2001 playing for the Sudbury Wolves. Semenov was then a second round pick, and Sergachev will hopefully have a better overall career.
THW’s The Next Ones prospect profile template design architect: Chris Ralph
A professional hockey writer and translator. Loves Russian culture, language, and hockey. Reachable on twitter @AlexSerenRosso