It's been a busy week for Capitals prospect Andre Burakovsky. Three days after Burakovsky was selected in the first-round (23rd overall) of the NHL Draft, the 18-year-old was taken 5th overall by the Erie Otters Wednesday in the Canadian Hockey League's import draft.
The Austrian born forward grew up in Sweden and played professionally last year with Malmo in Sweden's second-tier Hockey Allsvenskan league. Burakovsky had four goals and 11 points in 43 games and was the 5th rated European skater by Central Scouting Services heading into the NHL Draft.
Burakovsky told reporters in Newark last weekend that he feels he is still at least two years away from playing in the NHL.
Playing in the CHL would allow the left winger the opportunity to adjust to the North American game and the smaller ice surface. If his skills translate well in Erie, he could also find himself on a line with center Connor McDavid, the projected No.1 pick in the 2015 NHL Draft. A stint in the CHL would also offer Capitals management a better opportunity to keep tabs on their prospect.
On the other hand, continuing to play professionally in Sweden offers the 6-foot-1 Burakovsky the opportunity to play against more mature and physical competition (the CHL is comprised of players aged 16-20).