Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Nikita Grebyonkin scores a goal and celebrates with Metallurg Magnitogorsk
Photo credit: KHL

Nikita Grebyonkin reportedly eyeing a deal with the Maple Leafs

Published April 14, 2024 at 2:38 PM

There is some ongoing chatter on Sunday morning pertaining to the Maple Leafs and prospect Nikita Grebyonkin, who is currently playing with Metallurg Magnitogorsk in the KHL.

On Sunday morning, Hockey News Hub reported that Grebyonkin is planning to leave the KHL when his playoff run with Magnitogorsk comes to an end. Apparently, he is expected to leave Europe and sign with the Maple Leafs.

Grebyonkin's decision may not come immediately, which is understandable, due to his contract status. Being under contract doesn't enable him to negotiate his entry-level NHL contract. His KHL club, Metallurg Magnitogorsk, are preparing for Game 7 of their conference finals matchup, which is scheduled for Monday April 15th against the Avtomobilist Ekaterinburg. If they lose, it shouldn't be long before we know Grebyonkin's fate.

If Grebyonkin decides to sign an entry-level contract with the Maple Leafs he could join the Marlies immediately to work on his transition from the KHL to the North American game, which can be quite the adjustment, especially for a younger player.

The 6'2, 192 pound winger has been turning heads with his play in the KHL. Originally drafted by the Maple Leafs in the 2022 draft as a fifth-round selection, Grebyonkin went 135th overall, and has blown away all expectations after being plucked as an overager.

Scouting reports on Grebyonkin view him as a strong playmaking winger who uses his vision to find his teammates during rushes. Despite his size, he has good speed, especially with bursts in the corners and his play below the goal line. He doesn't bring a ton of physicality but he doesn't shy away from it either. He can score goals but is becoming more known as a playmaker.

The biggest question with Grebyonkin is, will he be able to adjust to the speed of the North American game with less time and space on the smaller ice surface? It's a fair question, as we've seen many players - even more experienced ones - fail to adjust accordingly. Still, with Grebyonkin just 21 years of age, he's still learning and growing as a player and may be able to adjust better than others provided he's coachable and comes in with a blank slate and an open mind.
April 14   |   307 answers
Nikita Grebyonkin reportedly eyeing a deal with the Maple Leafs

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