Afanasyev Excited to Play for Russia 


Windsor Spitfire forward Egor Afanasyev is excited to suit up for Team Russia.

The 18-year-old will play for Russia against Team OHL Thursday night in Kitchener as part of the 2019 CIBC Canada Russia Series. 

Afanasyev tells AM800 Sports he is looking forward to the game. 

"Oh, 100 per cent. Playing for my country is something special for me and I'm going to go there and show them what I can do," says Afanasyev. 

The 6-foot-3, 205 pound forward was acquired by Windsor last year as part of the trade that sent Amherstburg native Michael DiPietro to the Ottawa 67's. 

Afanasyev has six goals and 14 points in 14 games with the Spits this season, and admits he has the World Juniors on his mind. 

"Definitely, but whatever coach is going to decide, it's their part so we'll see."

The Canada Russia series is considered a showcase for hopefuls for the World Junior Hockey Championship. 

Russia split the first two games this week with Team QMJHL in New Brunswick.

In 16 years of competition, the Russian National Junior Team has played to a record of 33-60-0-3, winning last year's series by an 11-7 mark in points.

Afanasyev and the Spitfires (10-3-1) are riding a six game OHL win streak and he credits their "team first" attitude.

"Because you know we are playing for each other right now I think," says Afanasyev. "Just all four lines have been great every game, that is why we've been winning."

The Windsor Spitfires are back in action Saturday when they host the North Bay Battalion at 7:05 p.m. at the WFCU Centre.

The Spitfires also host the Saginaw Spirit at 4:05 p.m. on Sunday.