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Name: Viktor UchevatovFlorida Panthers (#60/2001 NHL Draft)

Rating: 68
Height: 194cm/6'4"
Weight: 96kg/211.2 lb
Position: Defenseman
Shoots: Left
Born: 1983-02-10
Birthplace: Angarsk, Russia

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Player News
11/26/2004 Victor Uchevatov (Florida Panthers) breaks left foot
03/01/2004 Defenseman Andrei Uchevatov traded to Florida Panthers as part of package for center Viktor Kozlov
Talent Analysis:
Viktor Uchvatov is a strong and physical defensive defenseman. He uses his 6’4 and 215 pound frame quite well, hitting opponents and digging for the puck against the boards. He will not dazzle with his skills, but will impress with his work ethic and competitiveness. Viktor will not stand out of the crowd with his average stickhandling and is currently experiencing some growing pains with his larger frame. Due to his size his speed has suffered and his maneuverability has also decreased. Though he will raise his level of skating as he gets used to his size as Viktor Kozlov did, his skating will not likely get any better then average.

Viktor does possess a keen hockey sense and takes care of business quite well in his own end of the ice. His offensive potential is limited, though due to his size he has never been given an offensive defenseman role and has mainly been designated to dig the puck out of the boards and clear out his own crease.
Back In Russia:
Viktor Uchevatov is a member of the Lokomotiv, formerly known as Torpedo Yaroslavl’s system. He debuted on the team’s junior farm team, Torpedo 2 during the 1999-2000 season. With the abundance of large physical defenseman in Lokomotiv’s system like Andrei Mariams, Sergei Zhukov and Alexander Vishnevsky, the team took their time developing Viktor. As of the end of the 2000-01 season he has not yet seen any action with the main squad in the Super League. The 2001 offseason is an important one for Viktor as he is expected to finally ascend to Lokomotiv’s main squad. It will be a difficult task as the team lost very few players in the off-season and a lot of those who were on loan last year are now more mature and ready to compete for roster spots.

Viktor Uchevatov’s debut on the Russian National Team came a few months earlier when he first joined the 1983 DOB squad at a four nations tournament. During the 1999-2000 season he played in a couple of tournaments including the 2000 U17 Invitational Cup. Viktor’s finally secured a stable spot in Team Russia’s lineup during the 2000-01 season. He participated in three tournaments with the 2001 U18 World Junior Championships being a winning conclusion to a strong year. At the 2001 World Junior Championships he was one of Russia’s top four defenseman and was amongst the leaders with his +9 +/- rating. In that tournament he also managed to do something that avoided him in the past
NHL Outlook:
The New Jersey Devils used their 2nd round pick to draft Viktor Uchevatov 60th overall in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft. Being drafted 60th was an achievement for Viktor as he was drafted ahead of some of his European peers who ranked above his 30th amongst the European skaters. Viktor’s size is his main attraction. He does have the smarts to complement the size, but has not yet developed the skill set to make an impact and elevate his game to the next level. The next level for Viktor is not even close to the NHL. His next goal is not even to secure a permanent spot on Lokomotiv’s main lineup, but to simply debut with the team and play a few games next season. There is a good chance that Lokomotiv will loan him to an Upper League or another Super League team during the 2000-01 season as it has done in the past with many of its younger players. Either league would be a step in a right direction for Viktor as he must not remain in the First League with Lokomotiv 2 next season.

Viktor has passed the first hurtle and gotten himself drafted. His teammate Artem Mariams who was arguably at a very similar level of hockey a few years ago, did not get drafted and despite his strong showing over the past few years with Lokomotiv’s main lineup, his chances of making the NHL and even getting drafted as an overage prospect are quite slim. The New Jersey Devils have depth and will not rush Viktor’s development and the pressure to perform has not yet born down on this prospect. Though, it remains to be seen if he can fulfill their expectations. Viktor is at least 3 years out of the NHL and the expectations set for him for the upcoming season are not at all unreachable.
Statistics:
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM +/-
2005-06 Amur (Khabarovsk) High League (Playoffs)4 1 0 1 2 -1
2004-05 San Antonio Rampage AHL (Reg.)16 1 1 2 16 -1
2003-04 Albany River Rats AHL (Juniors)14 0 0 0 13 -6
2002-03 Albany River Rates AHL (Reg.)55 0 2 2 27 -14
2001-02 Albany River Rates AHL (Reg.)64 0 2 2 50 -
2000-01 U18 Team Russia 5 Nations Tourn. (Intl.)4 0 0 0 8 3
2000-01 U18 Team Russia 4 Nations Tourn. (Intl.)3 0 0 0 4 2
2000-01 U18 Team Russia U18 WJC IIHF (Intl.)6 0 2 2 4 9
2000-01 Lokomotiv Yaroslavl 2 1st League (Juniors)28 1 1 2 74 -
1999-00 Torpedo Yaroslavl 2 1st League (Juniors)1 0 0 0 0
1999-00 Team Volga Regional Tourn. (Juniors)5 0 0 0 6
1999-00 Team Russia 83 Vyzov Cup (Intl.)4 1 0 1 0
1999-00 Torpedo Yaroslavl Jr. Junior League (Playoffs)6 0 2 2 4
1998-99 Team Russia 83 4 Nations Tourn. (Intl.)3 0 0 0 4 1
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