It will likely come as a surprise to no one, but according to OHL Prospects, Evgeny Grachev’s time in the Ontario Hockey League is up after a single season. According to the blog, the New York Rangers have already informed the Brampton Battalion that the 19-year old winger won’t be returning for a sophomore season, and will instead turn pro, playing in either the AHL or NHL.
Grachev, a Rangers 2008 third round draft pick (75th over all), finished second in team scoring for the Battalion in 2008-2009, leading all OHL freshmen in goals and points and earning OHL Rookie of the Year honors in the process. Despite his strong North American debut, it’s likely the 6′3″ 202-pound winger will need to spend some time adjusting to the professional game with the Hartford Wolf Pack in the AHL before he earns a roster spot in New York.
UPDATE 10:22pm: OHL Prospects has recanted their comments on Grachev and the Battalion, updating the wording of the article from the original “with the Rangers already informing Brampton he won’t be returning to them” to “with the Rangers rumoured to have already informed Brampton he won’t be returning to them.” In a post on HFBoards, the author, Brock Otten, called the absence of the word “rumored” in the original text “a typo” and admitted having no confirmed information regarding Grachev and the Battalion.
Despite the retraction, I have little doubt that Grachev will begin his North American professional career this fall.
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