There's a promising Russian-born talent at the top of International Scouting Services' November draft ranking - and it's not Nail Yakupov.
The independent scouting report has Quebec Remparts winger Mikhail Grigorenko as its No. 1 prospect, knocking the highly-touted Sarnia Sting forward to second on its Top 30 list.
"(Grigorenko's) ability to amplify the skill sets of those around him is what sets him apart from the rest of the pack," explains ISS Director of Scouting Dennis MacInnis. "And while the incredible offensive talents of Yakupov are nothing to take lightly, Grigorenko has shown better as of late and this isn't the first time."
Grigorenko is the second-highest scorer among next year's draft-eligible prospects, with 16 goals and 34 points in 23 games in his first CHL season.
Yakupov, who leads the stats race with 13 goals and 38 points in 20 OHL games, is ranked first in TSN Scout Craig Button's November ranking and in TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie's pre-season ranking.
"There is a vast difference in the way the two play the game," added MacInnis. "Yakupov reminds ISS more of a Pavel Bure/Taylor Hall type player, while Grigorenko seems to be a Joe Thornton clone. Yakupov has done nothing to warrant falling out of the top spot, but after many viewings and much debate the time has come for Grigorenko to reap the rewards of his continual and dominant development."
Rounding out the top five is Lekands winger Filip Forsberg, defenceman Ryan Murray of the Everett Silvertips and Red Deer Rebels blueliner Mathew Dumba.
Sarnia centre Alex Galchenyuk, who is out for the regular season after having knee surgery last month, remains at No. 17 while defenceman Morgan Rielly - also out for the year with a knee injury - dropped from fifth to 10th.