While doing a little research on the 2013 draft class I came across Nikita Zadorov. The 17 year old Russian-born defenseman is playing his first North American season for the London Knights of the OHL. Despite not being a legal adult in the eyes of many countries, Zadorov clocks in at 6′ 5″ and 229 lbs. Many pundits see Zadorov’s stock rising and Brendan of Dobber Prospects sees him as a top 10 talent that could be the first OHL defenseman taken in 2013. If the Tampa Bay ends up in a similar draft position (10th overall or so), could Zadorov be on their radar? » Continue reading “Le Cinq Nikitas: A Lockout-Induced Thought”
The Russian Factor. It has become a part of the drafting lexicon in the NHL, used to explain why a talented player isn’t drafted as soon as they should be. This didn’t scare Steve Yzerman in 2011, though, when he used the Lightning’s 58th overall pick to select Nikita Kucherov. The 19 year old has drawn comparisons to Marian Hossa and was touted as a 1st round talent if not for his heritage. The risky draft pick seemed like a coup when Kucherov joined the Quebec Remparts of the QMJHL. He was in North America, he’d get acclimated to the style of play, and he’d become a force for the Lightning in future years. Perhaps that was wishful thinking. » Continue reading “Nikita Kucherov Hits the Trade Block, Future in North America Uncertain”
Kucherov is currently playing for the Quebec Remparts of the QMJHL after being selected in the 2012 CHL Import Draft. He hasn’t seen any playing time for the Remparts due to continuing to recover from shoulder surgery.
Nikita was on the roster for the Lightning’s Development Camp earlier this summer, but didn’t appear on the ice due to his recovery.
The 19 year old right wing played 18 games for CSKA Moscow of the KHL, notching a goal and five points. He also saw 23 games with CSKA’s junior team and recorded 23 goals and 24 points. He represented his native Russia in the 2012 World Junior Championships, scoring two goals and 7 points on the team’s journey to the silver medal.
Needless to say, he’s pretty stoked.
- After working short handed in the 2011-12 season because of assistant coach Wayne Fleming’s continuing battle with brain cancer, the Lightning’s coaching staff will fill that space for the upcoming season. Steve Thomas has been brought on as assistant coach, player coordinator, jack of all trades. We’re not sure exactly what his title will be, but GM Steve Yzerman is a bit vague on it as well.
Thomas played 20 years in the NHL with 6 different teams, so he’s more than qualified.The plan is for Thomas to spend ten days a month with Tampa’s AHL affiliate in Syracuse and the rest with the big club. One of his duties is likely to be working on the power play. After being very potent during ’10-’11, the PP definitely suffered. This has the potential to add a huge weapon back into the Lightning’s arsenal.