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Carey Rie looking down ice close up

Nikolai Khabibulin isn’t fond of comparisons but being forced to find one for Russian goaltending prospect Yaroslav Askarov produced an impressive response.

“I never really try to compare but he’s got legs like Vasilevskiy,” Khabibulin said.

It’s a fitting comparison given the 6-foot-3, right-catching Askarov broke Vasilevskiy’s record and become the highest Russian-born goalie when the Nashville Predators selected him with the 11th pick at the 2020 NHL Draft on Tuesday. Some expected Askarov to become the first goalie picked inside the top-10 since the Montreal Canadiens selected some guy named Carey Price fifth in the 2005 NHL Draft, but the smooth-moving Russian settled instead for tying Jonathan Bernier (Los Angeles, 2006) and Jack Campbell (Dallas, 2010) as the highest picked goalies since Price.

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