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Ducks’ Prospect Bobkov Set To Make Professional Debut, Trying To Get a Head Start on Earning a Spot For Next Year

The “Russian Octopus” has had quite the season, culminating with a dramatic win over Canada in the 2011 WJC, and being named the final game’s MVP. Yesterday it was announced that Bobkov, who played for the London Knights of the OHL during the majority of the 2010-2011 season, would be joining the Anaheim Ducks’ minor league affiliate the Syracuse Crunch for the remainder of the season. Check out what Lindsay Kramer of The Post-Standard had to say about the goalie’s arrival:

Rookie goalie Igor Bobkov said he’s dropped 25 pounds this season, and Syracuse Crunch goalie coach Eli Wilson treated the newcomer like he still needed to shed an equal amount after practice on Tuesday.

Wilson kept his project on the ice for several extra minutes of tutoring, a puckless workout that included short-burst movements from side-to-side and up and down.

It was a big load to move, considering Bobkov stands about 6-foot-6 and still weighs near 215 pounds.

“I don’t know why, but when you come to a team, the first practice is always hard,” Bobkov said. “It’s like a test. It’s new drills, new movement.”

Bobkov, a third-round pick by Anaheim in 2009, joined the team after his junior season with London of the OHL concluded. Another top prospect, center Peter Holland, a 2009 Ducks first-rounder, also arrived in Syracuse after his year with Guelph of the OHL ended. Both are on tryout deals, and could be on the Crunch roster next year.

Bobkov was 4-10-0 with a 4.12 goals-against average and .874 save percentage for London this season, while Holland posted 37 goals and 51 assists for Guelph. Syracuse coach Mark Holick said Holland will play against Norfolk on Thursday and that Bobkov will take the ice for at least one of the Crunch’s final three games of the season.

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