A look into the fantasy upside of Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Ivan Provorov …
In this edition of the Journey, we’ll take a look at the career and fantasy potential of 2015 first round pick Ivan Provorov.
Heading into the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, there were three defensive prospects thought to be the gems of the class: Noah Hanifin, Zach Werenski and Ivan Provorov. While Hanifin was the highest-ranked, Provorov was thought to be the most NHL-ready.
Born in Yaroslavl, Russia in 1997, Ivan Provorov played for the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl youth program before crossing the pond and settling in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. He played for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights Bantam team in 2011-12 and registered 28 goals and 33 assists for 61 points in 27 games. The following season, he played for the Knights U16 youth and midget teams tallying a combined 56 goals, 77 assists and 133 points in 75 games. The Cedar Rapids RoughRiders of the USHL took notice of Provorov’s rising stock and made him the fifth overall pick in the 2013 Futures Draft.
In his first season with Cedar Rapids in 2013-14, Provorov recorded 19 points in 56 games and would also go scoreless in five games for Russia’s U18 squad at the World Junior Championships. Continuing to gain notoriety for his play and seemingly limitless ceiling, Provorov was selected 120th overall by Lokomotiv in the 2014 KHL draft and also picked 30th overall by the Brandon Wheat Kings in the 2014 CHL Import Draft.
Provorov decided to stay on this side of the pond and joined the Wheat Kings for the 2014-15 season. He really came into his own as a premier defensive prospect by scoring 15 goals to go with 46 assists for 61 points in 60 games. He would add an additional 13 playoff points in 19 games as Brandon reached the WHL Final against Kelowna. He also played for Russian in the 2015 World Junior Championships and assisted on one goal in seven games. Provorov finished the season by playing in the CHL Top Propsects Game and would eventually be ranked seventh overall by Central Scouting leading up to the NHL Draft.
In the weeks before the draft, it was apparent that Noah Hanifin would likely be the first defenseman taken. Arizona at third overall and Carolina with the fifth selection were the likely destinations. Other top-ten teams interested in defensemen were Philadelphia with the seventh pick and Columbus with the eighth pick. It was ‘rumored’ all along that Provorov was on top of the Flyers draft board from the beginning. They wanted to add him to a deep, defensive prospect pool that included top WHL defenseman and 2014 first round pick Travis Sanheim among others. When Provorov still on the board when the Flyers were up with