The Detroit Red Wings have signed free agent forward Vladislav Namestnikov to a two-year contract worth $4 million. This contract will pay Namestnikov $2 million per year. This keeps him with the Red Wings through the 2021-22 season.
UPDATE: The #RedWings today agreed to terms with center Vladislav Namestnikov on a two-year contract.
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) October 11, 2020
The Detroit Red Wings Sign Vladislav Namestnikov
Over Namestnikov’s seven-year career he’s played for the Tampa Bay Lightning, New York Rangers, Ottawa Senators, and Colorado Avalanche. He’s posted 83 goals and 106 assists in his 425 game career. This amounts to 189 points or 0.44 points per game. Tampa Bay drafted the Russian 27th overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. Although Namestnikov was at his best with Tampa Bay, he is still a viable bottom-six option.
Namestnikov started his career playing centre but soon made the switch to wing once he left Tampa Bay. He would regularly take over 400 faceoffs per season with the Lightning. Yet, he hasn’t hit 100 draws in a season since 2017-18. Namestnikov’s averaged over a hit per game throughout his career, bringing a physical presence to the Red Wings. Despite this physicality, Namestnikov doesn’t take many penalties. This allows coaches to rely on Namestnikov to bring energy to a bottom-six while keeping the game at 5-on-5.
Namestnikov’s possession numbers have fluctuated throughout his career. He was a positive possession player with the Rangers and the Lightning but posted negative numbers with the Senators and the Avalanche. Namestnikov was particularly bad at controlling possession during his nine regular-season games with Colorado, where he posted a -9.9 Corsi percentage relative to his team.
What This Means Going Forward
Namestnikov is a versatile forward who brings two-way ability to the Red Wings. While he is undersized for the NHL, he makes up for it with physical plays that coaches can rely on. If the Red Wings ever needs him to play centre, he can do that as well. He has also displayed the ability to rise in the playoffs, as he scored four goals for the Avalanche in the 2020 NHL playoffs.