Calgary Flames Sign Nikita Zadorov To One-Year Deal

nikita zadorov contract

The Calgary Flames have signed restricted free agent defenceman Nikita Zadorov to a one-year, $3.75 million contract. The contract avoids the arbitration hearing which was set for August 26.

Nikita Zadorov Signs With Calgary

The 26-year-old defenceman had his signing rights traded by the Chicago Blackhawks to the Flames in July. The return to Chicago was a third-round selection in the 2022 NHL Entry Draft. Zadorov was dealt by the Colorado Avalanche to the Blackhawks in October 2020 in the Brandon Saad trade. He played 55 games in the 2020-21 season, scoring one goal and eight points with Chicago.

Zadorov was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft with the 16th pick overall. He played two seasons in Buffalo before being traded to the Avalanche in 2015. The Russian player stayed in Colorado for five years before being traded to Chicago. Throughout his eight-year NHL career, Zadorov has scored 23 goals and 83 points in 411 games.

What This Means for the Future

Zadorov is a hard-working defenceman with a big frame. He’s known for his physical game and can be really good defensively. According to Natural Stat Trick, he allowed just 1.93 goals against per 60 at 5-on-5 last season. Having lost their former captain Mark Giordano in the expansion draft, the Flames needed to add someone to help them defensively. Zadorov might be the right guy.

The 26-year-old player is not only a veteran, he has experience in the playoffs, having played 33 playoff games with the Avalanche. Zadorov will be a good locker-room presence for the younger players who will arrive for the new season. His physical game will help Calgary get tougher to play against – even though their division won’t be the hardest. Zadorov will not replace the leadership and importance that Giordano had off-ice, but he can be a decent replacement on-ice. He is not as offensive but his defensive game can compensate for that.

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