Vladislav Kolyachonok Becomes First Flint Firebird To Be Selected in Second Round of NHL Draft
Vancouver, B.C. – The Florida Panthers selected Flint Firebirds defenseman Vladislav Kolyachonok in the second-round, 52nd overall, of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft Saturday, making him the sixth Flint Firebird to be drafted in the National Hockey League in just four seasons.
Kolyachonok, a 6-foot-1, 185-pound native of Minsk, Belarus, finished second among all rookie defenseman in the OHL this season, setting a record for most points by a rookie in a Firebirds’ uniform with 30 points (4G, 26A) in 54 games. He was the first ever Flint Firebird to be named to the Ontario Hockey League’s (OHL) First All-Rookie Team for the 2018-19 season. Along with earning the honor on the league level, he was tabbed as Flint’s ‘Best Defenseman’ at the end-of-year Firebirds’ player awards banquet.
On the international level, Kolyachonok was named captain of Belarus’ National Men’s Under-18 Team for the 2019 IIHF World Championship in Sweden where he finished second on his team and third among all defenseman in the tournament with five points (1G, 4A) in six games.
Rounds 2-7 continues Saturday on the NHL Network in the United States and on Sportsnet and TVA Sports in Canada.
Three Flint Firebirds that were listed in the NHL Central Scouting’s ‘Final Rankings’ hope to also hear their name called Saturday: Ethan Keppen (#74), Eric Uba (#141) and Luke Cavallin (#23 Goalies). Additionally Kyle Harris, Cody Morgan, Emmet Pierce and Jacob Winterton are also first time eligible players to be selected in the NHL Draft.
Since the Flint Firebirds’ inception four season ago in 2015, the club has now had 17 drafted or NHL signed players on its roster consisting of Will Bitten (Montreal), Dennis Busby (Arizona), Nick Caamano (Dallas), Connor Chatham (New Jersey), Ty Dellandrea (Dallas) Fedor Gordeev (Toronto), Ethan Keppen (Vancouver), Kyle Keyser (Boston), Vladislav Kolyachonok (Florida), Nick Mattinen (Toronto), Brent Moran (Dallas), Alex Nedeljkovic (Carolina), Alex Peters (Dallas), Vili Saarijarvi (Detroit), Kole Sherwood (Columbus), Jalen Smereck (Arizona) and Josh Wesley (Carolina).
For the past five seasons, the OHL has sent more players to the NHL than any other league in the world. The OHL is first in the world in total players selected in the NHL Draft (197), first and second round selections combined (76), defenseman (80) and forwards (122). On NHL opening day rosters in October, one-in-four players (26.4%) competing in the NHL were alums of the OHL, which is also the highest percentage in the world.
Season ticket packages are the best value for Flint Firebirds fans and are on sale now for the upcoming 2019-20 season. Benefits for full season ticket holders include free parking, a ticket savings for all 34 home games, complimentary tickets to all (4) road regular-season games in Saginaw, (4) buddy vouchers to bring a friend to any home Firebirds’ game, exclusive invitation to team and player events and much, much, more.
Season Tickets can be purchased at the Dort Federal Event Center Box Office, Monday thru Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ET). For more information, contact the Dort Federal Event Center Box Office at (810) 744-0580 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About The Flint Firebirds:
The Flint Firebirds are a proud member of the prestigious 20-team Ontario Hockey League. The OHL is part of the Canadian Hockey League (CHL), which is known as the world’s premiere player development league for the NHL. On NHL opening day rosters in October, 70% of NHL players were CHL alums. Since the Firebirds’ inception in Flint, Michigan four seasons ago, the team has produced 17 NHL signed or drafted players. More than 250 scouts representing all 31 NHL clubs attended a Firebirds game in Flint throughout the 2018-19 season. The Firebirds average nearly 3,000 fans per game at the newly renovated Dort Federal Credit Union Event Center, reaching over 100,000 fans each OHL season.
For more information:
Director of Broadcasting & Communications
Flint Firebirds Hockey Club