No. 3: D Nikita Tryamkin (Avtomobilist, KHL)
For the second time in as many months, Nikita Tryamkin has been awarded the KHL’s top blueliner of the month.
Although we in Vancouver like to forget that Tryamkin is still playing hockey somewhere in this world, he has been one of the top defencemen in the KHL this year. He has 21 points in 36 games, seven of those points being goals. For those who care about plus/minus stats, he is second in the league at a +18.
In the context of his team, the Yekaterinburg Avtomobilist, Tryamkin leads the blueline in almost all categories (goals, assists, points, plus/minus, PIM, 5v5 goal, SOG, shifts/game, hits, and blocks).
The 23-year-old BFG
Considering that he is still just 23 years old (who knows, he could still be growing?), I believe that the Canucks should not give up on hoping Tryamkin comes back. If and when he does, the Canucks blueline looks so much better with him, Olli Juolevi, Troy Stecher
and Rasmus Dahlin
At this moment, Tryamkin is the KHL’s undisputed top U24 defender. Would it be too big of a stretch to think that Tryamkin could be a top-six defenseman for Team Russia in PyeongChang? I do not think so unless the KHL stops its players from participating.
Last but not least…
…Good thing that Gudbranson and Tryamkin didn’t play against the Maple Leafs because Matthews would have lost his mind out of frustration had the two played.