Weight: 185 pounds
Date of birth: February 10, 1999
Hometown: Brest, Belarus
Position: Right Wing
OHL Draft: Round 1, 29th overall, 2016 CHL Import Draft
The Owen Sound Attack selected Maksim Sushko (Maxim Sushko) in the first round of the 2016 Canadian Hockey League Import Draft, twenty-ninth overall, after he put up 9 goals and 21 assists in 21 games for Shakhter Soligorsk-2 of the Belarus-2 League. He added 3 goals and 10 assists in 16 games in helping his squad to the league championship.
Sushko was also selected in the first round, 11th overall, by Dynamo Minsk at the 2016 Kontinental Hockey League Draft.
Sushko has represented his native Belarus on two occasions. Last season he played for his country at the World Junior Championships Under-18 Division 1 (qualifying), scoring 2 goals and 4 assists in 5 games and wining gold. He was named his squads top player in the tournament. This season, he represented Belarus at the World Junior Championships Under 20 Division 1 scoring once in 5 games and again winning gold.
Putting up points has come somewhat easily for Sushko to date. During the 2014-2015 season, he scored 37 goals and 29 assists in 17 games for DYUSSH Shakhter Under-18. In this his Ontario Hockey League rookie season, he appeared in 54 games and put up a very respectable 17 goals and 15 assists. As is usually the case with Sushko, as the games begin to matter more, he rises to the occasion and has 3 goals and 8 assists in 16 playoff games for the Attack. (at the time of this article, Owen Sound is set to face the Erie Otters in game 6 of the Western Conference Championship which Erie leads 3-2).
We say this a lot about players at this level, and Sushko is no different: He does need to work on his complete game. He doesn’t always put the effort in his own zone as he does the offensive zone, and sometimes waits for someone else to do the leg work and head the other way.
For Sushko, that is the complete opposite of his work ethic in the offensive zone. His pursuit of the puck is almost non-stop. He possesses good speed, gets on top of defenders quickly and rarely gives up until he gains possession. He has good size but won’t overpower defenders physically. His work ethic and will make him successful on the forecheck.
Sushko has a deceptively quick release on his shot and he gets a lot on it with an ability to beat goaltenders cleanly. As good a goal scorer as he is, he’s just as good a playmaker. He sees the ice extremely well, makes the right decisions, thinks the game at a high level and quickly and can deliver a crisp, clean pass. He has shown a strong ability to run the powerplay from the half-wall, whether getting into position for a shot, or more likely, set up teammates for opportunities.
Sushko was ranked 73 among North American skaters on NHL Central Scouting’s mid-term rankings. He remained relatively unchanged on their final rankings, ending up at 72.
Sushko is one of eight Owen Sound teammates ranked by Central Scouting. He ranks fourth among his teammates.
This is the profile page of Maxim Sushko at Elite Prospects