Photo by Matt Zambonin/HHOF-IIHF Images.
The Muskegon Lumberjacks, members of the United States Hockey League, announced today that they have signed forward Andrei Svechnikov from AK Bars Kazan to a tender for the 2016-17 season. Svechnikov, a native of Barnaul, RUS, is Muskegon’s first and final tender this season, and will take the place of the Lumberjacks USHL Phase I Draft second round pick. Svechnikov is the tenth player to sign a tender with a USHL team this season. Eight players signed tender contracts last season.
A tender contract allows USHL clubs to sign a player directly to their team for next season in exchange for their first or second round pick in the USHL Phase I Draft.
“Svechnikov is one of the best players in the world,” said John Vanbiesbrouck, general manager for the Muskegon Lumberjacks. “He’s a power forward who can score and play in every zone on the ice.”
Svechnikov recently represented his country at the U18 World Championship in Grand Forks, North Dakota, finishing with two goals in five games as a 16-year old. In 23 games with AK Bars Kazan, Svechnikov has scored 39 goals and collected 24 assists for a total of 63 points. The 6’2”, 176 pound forward has also played in the Junior National Program, representing Russia on five separate occasions from 2015-16. In 27 games, playing with and against older competition, Svechnikov registered 21 goals and 18 assists for 39 points.
Svechnikov is the younger brother of Detroit Red Wings 2015 first round NHL Draft pick Yevgeni Svechnikov, who recently joined the Grand Rapids Griffins for the Calder Cup Playoffs run in the American Hockey League (AHL).
Now in its fifth year, the USHL tender process allows teams to sign up to two 2000 birth year players prior to the 2016 USHL Phase I Draft. The first tender for a team would take the place of a first-round pick in Phase I of the USHL Draft, and if the team tenders a second player, that would take the place of a second-round selection in the USHL Phase I Draft. The final day to sign a tender is today, Sunday May 1, 2016.
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the USHL celebrates its 14th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league in 2015-16. A record 37 players were chosen in the 2015 NHL Draft and more than 375 players on team rosters last season committed to NCAA Division I schools, further establishing the USHL as the world’s foremost producer of junior hockey talent.