The Hockey News Hot List: Burmistrov #1 (Photo © Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
Like fellow Russian imports Ivan Telegin and Kirill Kabanov, Burmistrov came over to the Canadian League this year for more ice time than he would get in the Kontinental League and better competition than he would have seen on the Russian junior circuit.
“The OHL is a better league,” he said. “Fast, many hits. I like it.”
And the Colts like him. The dynamic pivot from Kazan has 20 assists and 29 points in 23 games this year, quarterbacks the second unit of Barrie’s power play and even kills penalties. He has an English tutor who comes twice a week and also watches some TV to round out the experience.
“I watch NHL games…maybe Tyra or Ellen,” he grinned.
Burmistrov is very wiry at 6-foot, 170 pounds, but difficult to knock off the puck. Above all else, though, he’s a fantastic playmaker.
“I like to pass,” Burmistrov said. “Every game I want to (set up) my partners.”
Of course, linemate Stefan Della Rovere will likely be an enemy when the world juniors roll around in a month. He’ll be suiting up for Canada while Burmistrov has a great shot at a Russian roster that will now boast Nikita Filatov. Asked if he’ll trash-talk his Colts mates should Russia prevail, Burmistrov was emphatic.
“Yeahhhhh,” he laughed. “But if Canada beats Russia, all the fun will be had on me.”
Alexander Burmistrov is eligible for the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.