Answering questions about Anatolii Golyshev
Anatolii Golyshev signed a one-year contract for 20-21 with the New York Islanders. He is on his way to North America, where he will quarantine himself before joining his new team.
Golyshev has been in the system for years now. The Islanders drafted him in the fourth round of the 2016 NHL Draft. But being in Russia for so long means he hasn’t received much attention, and rightly so. Six months ago we were told he could not be interested in joining the Islanders (subscription required).
But here we are with Golyshev holding a one-year ELC (the maximum allowed under the NHL’s CBA) for the 20-21 season. With the Russian forward joining the islands this year, I asked the island fans if they had any questions about the Russian prospect. Here are some of those questions and my answers!
Answering Questions About New York Islanders Anatolii Golyshev
Q: Is it Anatolii, Anatoli or Anatoly?
This is a great question because it is not that easy to answer. It is pronounced Anatoly, but his name is spelled Анатолий in Russian so in English it should be Anatolii. But as Gillian Kemmerer highlighted it could easily have gone one way or the other.
I was using Anatoly for a while, but seeing how the islands officially go with Anatolii, I made the switch as well.
Q: How is his English?
When I was trying to set up an interview with him during the season, an interpreter was going to be used. I know russian but it is very basic i can basically say ‘hello’, ‘how are you’ and ‘where’s the coffee? Again, very basic and purely just enough that I got by when I traveled there.
All that to say that his English may not be strong enough to conduct solo interviews. I’m sure his English is good, but switching from Russian to English is not at all easy. Believe me. I imagine he will use someone to help him at first. Fortunately, there are a few Russians on the team who can help him with that.
Q: Do you think he’s going to the taxi squad or getting off at Bridgeport? And in the long term, where do you see it fitting into the islands?
I can’t see him immediately fit into the lineup. Barry Trotz hardly knows him. It’s going to take a while for him to gain the coach’s confidence. I can absolutely see him take a spot on the taxi squad and maybe get an AHL conditioning loan this year once he’s game ready.
In the long run, I see him as a winger for the last six. As in the third line. There is a possibility that he will find his way to the top of the depth chart and gain some time in the top six on the road.
If he can line up with qualified teammates, he could absolutely score points. At the start of the 20-21 KHL season, Golyshev lined up with Pavel Datsyuk. In his first 12 games of the year (largely spent playing with Datsyul), he scored six goals and provided four assists. A pace that would have seen him equal his career high of 44 points out of 15-16.
After the separation of the two, Golyshev’s production dried up. He scored 17 points in his next 41 games. That’s a drop of 0.54 points per game or a loss of 22 points over the year.
Q: Is he a Gol goalscorer?
I love the pun.
I wouldn’t call it that. His best goalscoring season at the KHL level was in 2015-16 when he scored 25 goals. It’s the only year he’s eclipsed 20 goals in one season.
Q: Most realistic expectations over the next 3 years?
When I project what it might be I use translation factors. Translation factors are used to determine how production in a league (like the KHL) would translate into the NHL.
Based on that, Golyshev is a 36-point NHL-level player for me. He could certainly perform at a higher pace, assuming he lines up with qualified teammates, but I see him scoring 30-40 points (at best) in the NHL.
It might not seem like much, but consider guys like Michael Dal Colle and Leo Komarov are scoring 18 and 11 points in 82 games. Golyshev could be a huge upgrade from either.