The New York Rangers will draft Klim Kostin with the 21st overall pick.
Kostin’s power forward potential is sky high. He has the ability to be a top-six forward on the Rangers with regularity in the near future. He has also mentioned plans to play in North America right away, allowing them to potentially sign him immediately and allow him to play for Hartford as soon as next year.
The Rangers do need a defenseman quite badly, but most of the quality ones like Brannstrom and Liljegren will likely be off the board by then. Kostin’s injury riddled season, plus his nationality, make him a candidate to drop right into the Rangers’ lap. It’s a classic Rangers pick: high risk, super high reward.
Kostin played in just eight KHL games last year, recording one point and scoring a shootout goal to boot. He has shined on the international stage, captaining Russia in the Ivan Hlinka Tournament and the World Juniors, nearing a point per game in each.
Addressing needs is important, but the Rangers cannot pass up on Kostin’s potential if he is there. At 21st overall, Kostin would be the best available player, and the Rangers cannot let that slide past them.