Photo credit:courtesy UConn Athletics
2023 FlamesNation prospect rankings: #15 Arsenii Sergeev
6 months ago
The Calgary Flames have an abundance of goaltenders to choose from. Jacob Markstrom is being paid lots of money to be the starter, Dan Vladar’s future is uncertain, but at his best, he’s a solid backup, and Dustin Wolf, arguably the best goaltending prospect in all of the NHL, just had a flat-out incredible season in the AHL with the Calgary Wranglers, winning awards for being the best goalie of the year and the AHL’s MVP.
However, there’s another goalie that may not be the most interesting prospect to outsiders looking in but could be a help to both the AHL and maybe even the NHL squad at some point in the near future.
Born December 16, 2002 (20 years old) in Yaroslavl, Russia
6’3″, 192 pounds
Drafted in the seventh round (205th overall) by Calgary in 2021
Sergeev doesn’t have the most common path to where he currently sits in the Flames organization, but he’s here nonetheless. After playing in Russia in 2017-18 and 2018-19 with not much success, he decided to come over to North America, where in 2019, he played in three different leagues for three different teams. He played the highest number of games in the NAHL with the New Jersey Titans, where he posted a 10-4-0 record but also posted a .892 save percentage and a 3.56 goals-against average, which wasn’t ideal. And, with the Sioux Falls Stampede in the USHL, he suited up for two games and posted a 7.27 goals against average and a .811 save percentage. Still, not all that great!
Sergeev did have some success in his limited number of games with the New Jersey Rockets in the NCDC, where he had a goals-against average of 3.46 but a save percentage of .926.
The next season, Sergeev played full-time in the NAHL, registering a total of 20 games that year, which was his draft year. He sure made a statement, too. His goals against average dropped significantly down to a 2.17, and his save percentage went up as well to .936. He ended the regular season with a 14-4-2 record, and even though he lost the only playoff game he started in, he still registered a .929 save percentage in the loss.
If you thought that’s where his improvements would stop, you’re dead wrong. Sergeev ended up going back to the USHL for 2020-21 and began playing for the Tri-City Storm in Nebraska. There he got more playing time, and for the cherry on top, his results only got better… tons better. In 41 games played, he registered a 2.08 goals-against average and a .918 save percentage. Oh, and the Storm only lost a grand total of six regulation games while Sergeev was in the net. His post-season appearances that season were a bit less jaw-dropping, but nonetheless, he made an impact.
Now, we move to last season, where Sergeev played at the University of Connecticut in the NCAA after committing to the team in 2021. Although his numbers weren’t Tri-City Storm good, they were still very solid at the Division One level. In 19 games played against the likes of Boston College, Boston University, Merrimack, Providence, and even Ohio State, Sergeev was up to the task, finishing the year with a 2.61 goals-against average and .912 save percentage.
Expectations for 2023-24
Sergeev is lauded for being a technically sound goalie with some excellent athleticism, and his height only helps his case when it comes to the eye test/scouting piece of the puzzle. So, even though the path to the NHL for him looks like it’s going to take a few more years at most, there could be a spot for him at some point if he continues to produce the way he is currently.
As far as next season though, he’s going to be back with Connecticut playing in net and likely taking an even further step in the NCAA competing against older goalies in the UConn system as well. If the Huskies want to take a step forward, Sergeev will have to take a step forward as well. As a seventh-round draft choice, it’s impressive that he has pushed his way this high up in the Flames’ system, and another solid year (maybe even with some strong postseason performances) could help him move even higher up the totem pole.
Everyone wants to be in the NHL, and it just so happens that the Flames have a strong goalie pool as of now. But if Sergeev can continue to play some of his best hockey against some of the top-tier college hockey teams in 2023-24, he’s going to open even more eyes in the prospect landscape. His physical attributes are strong, his technical attributes are even better, and continuing to work on consistency at the college level will be huge for his development.
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