Grachev Makes His North American Debut
Monday September 01st 2008, 8:41 am
Photo: Brampton Battalion

Photo: Brampton Battalion

New York Rangers 2008 3rd round pick Evgeni Grachev got his first taste of North American hockey last night as the Brampton Battalion won their first exhibition game, 5-3 over the Kitchener Rangers. Grachev played left wing on a line with Cody Hodgeson, the 10th pick over-all in this year’s draft, and Sam Carrick. Grachev was held scorless in the game.

The Battalion web site posted a story on Grachev’s arrival in Brampton on Friday, noting that he arrived via New York, where he’s spent the past several weeks practicing with other members of the Rangers organization. Battalion coach Stan Butler, who has worked with Rangers head coach Tom Renney in the past as part of Hockey Canada, liked what he saw of the big Russian. “All the reports I’d been given by the Rangers said he was a big, strong guy who can really shoot the puck. He showed that today.”

Grachev got his first opportunity to show off his skills in an intrasquad game on Friday, where he played several shifts with former Team Canada foe Matt Duchene, and scored a goal in Team Green’s 10-7 win. Duchene had this to say about his new teammate: “He’s unbelievably skilled,” said Duchene. “You could see that the way he played today. When he has the puck he makes things happen.”

Grachev will leave Brampton for Traverse City, Michigan on September 10th, where he’ll join the rest of the Rangers prospects as they prepare for the Traverse City Prospects Tournament.

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Filed under: Evgeni Grachev

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