Columbus Blue Jackets Draft candidate at 4th overall, Russian winger Ivan Demidov could be a big steal

The Blue Jackets hold the fourth overall pick at next month's NHL Draft. Should Ivan Demidov drop into their laps, they would be wise to take a swing. This kid can play.
SKA Hockey Club player, Ivan Demidov (11) seen in action...
SKA Hockey Club player, Ivan Demidov (11) seen in action... / SOPA Images/GettyImages
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The Jackets find themselves in a familiar position ahead of this year's NHL Draft. For the fourth year in a row, they will pick inside the top-6 of the first round.

Obviously, when you're picking this high for this many years in a row, your on-ice results aren't up to par. But the Jackets have done a terrific job filling up the prospect cupboards.

In fact, this pick really feels like it's not entirely needed, in my opinion. They have a lot of talent coming, so they can go in just about any direction here.

With that being the case, why not take a massive home run swing and take the player who may have the highest offensive ceiling in the entire draft: Russian winger Ivan Demidov.

That may seem hyperbolic, but I assure you it's not. Macklin Celebrini is the clear, undisputed #1 prospect in this draft - and with good reason. Nobody is challenging for that spot, nor is my previous comment a slight on him or his potential.

That comment is based on nothing other than Demidov's massive potential. To clarify; part of what makes Celebrini such a hot commodity is the position he plays (center), and the way he plays it.

Celebrini can certainly score - evidenced by his Hobey Baker win this year - but, he's also a refined two-way player who is going to be a top line center in this league for the next 15 years. Honestly, he's exactly what the Jackets need, and I'm bummed we didn't get the first pick.

I said the same sort of things about Connor Bedard last year. The Jackets failed to win the lottery then as well, but you know what happened? The player they needed most fell right into their laps. In my opinion, they got the ultimate consolation prize in Adam Fantilli.

If things shake out in a similar fashion this year, they could again land the draft's second best player. That player, I believe, is Ivan Demidov.

Should Chicago and Anaheim both opt for defensemen, Demidov would be available for the Jackets at fourth overall. If that's the case, they would have a hard time passing on him. Or if they do, they may regret it. Just ask Montreal fans how they're feeling about not drafting Matvei Michkov last year (spoiler: it's not good).

What makes Demidov so good? Let's break down his style and potential on the next page.