Today, the Russian ice hockey federation released their roster for the Four Nations tournament in early November in Czechia and Leafs prospect Semyon Kizimov is on the roster.
Kizimov was selected 211th overall last summer in the seventh round, and is not a player we know much about. He’s still 18, doesn’t even turn 19 until the WJC is over next January.
He is a left-shooting right wing who is playing a solid third line role on Lada Togliatti in the VHL, one league down from the KHL in Russia. His team was just contracted from the KHL last season under their criteria which emphasizes ticket sales and profitability as well as team strength. They are one of the strongest teams this year in the VHL and will likely be a contender to win the championship, so the fact they keep the teenager on the roster says they have a high opinion of him.
He has two goals and two assists so far in 15 games.
The annual Canada/Russia CHL series overlaps this tournament, so some of the players cut from that prospective roster will be added to this group announced today. Note: Semyon Der-Arguchintsev is not on that roster. The group in Czechia will play off vs Sweden (and Pontus Holmberg), Finland and the host team from November 9-11.
Pontus Holmberg to play in WJC prep tournament
Out of this tournament and the Canada/Russia series team, Russia will make its World Junior roster, so there is a chance, particularly if he plays well, that Kizimov could be coming to Canada to play this December.
Last year, Kizimov competed in the World U18 tournament and had three points in three games. In all the U18 international tournaments he appeared in, he had 11 points in 17 games. Jumping up to the U20 level now would be a major accomplishment, and even making this tournament is a sign the Russian federation are paying some attention to him.