Flames trade defenseman Nikita Zadorov to Canucks

Nikita Zadorov

The Calgary Flames have traded defenseman Nikita Zadorov of Moscow, Russia to the Vancouver Canucks according to Rogers Sportsnet on Thursday. In return, the Flames receive a third round draft pick in the 2026 National Hockey League Entry Draft and a fifth round draft pick in the 2024 NHL Entry Draft.

The Canucks are Zadorov’s fifth NHL team. He previously was with the Buffalo Sabres from 2013 to 2015, the Colorado Avalanche from 2015 to 2020, the Chicago Blackhawks from 2020 to 2021, and the Calgary Flames from 2023 to 2024.

Zadorov in 2022-23

Last season Zadorov played all 82 games for the Flames. He had 14 goals and seven assists for 21 points, and was a +10 with 80 penalty minutes, two game winning goals, one power-play point, 130 shots on goal, 75 blocked shots, 174 hits, 31 takeaways and 57 giveaways. Zadorov’s power-play point last season was a power-play assist on a goal by Adam Ruzicka of Bratislava, Slovakia in a 5-4 Flames win over the Florida Panthers on November 19, 2022. Zadorov’s game-winning goals came in a 5-2 Flames win over the Seattle Kraken on January 27 (Zadorov scored from Elias Lindholm of Boden, Sweden, and Mackenzie Weegar of Ottawa, Ontario), and in a 3-1 Flames win over the San Jose Sharks on April 12 (Zadorov scored from Name Kadri of London, Ontario and Weegar in a game where Zadorov registered his only NHL hat trick.

Zadorov in 2023-24

So far this season, Zadorov has one goal and five assists for six points in 21 games. He is a -6 with 23 penalty minutes, 29 shots on goal, 19 blocked shots, 41 hits, eight takeaways and 12 giveaways.

Trade no surprise

This deal was in the works for a while. Earlier this month, Zadorov’s agent Dan Milstein was publicly outspoken about Zadorov’s lack of ice time in Calgary and did not think the Flames would be able to keep the blueliner, who is a free agent at the end of the season.

A trade also appeared imminent when the Flames recalled defenseman Jordan Oesterle of Dearborn Heights, Michigan on Wednesday. Oesterle had been playing for the Calgary Wranglers, the Flames’s minor league affiliate.

Canucks struggling defensively


The Canucks lost 4-1 to the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday. They have been struggling keeping the puck out of the net since Carson Soucy broke his foot against Montreal. In that time, the Canucks have won four of nine games.

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