The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that the team has signed defenseman Nikita Zadorov to a two-year contract through the 2018-19 season.
Zadorov, 22, appeared in 56 games for the Avalanche during the 2016-17 season and led the team with 153 hits despite missing the final 25 contests due to an ankle injury. The 6-foot-5, 230-pound defenseman finished the campaign with 10 points (0g/10a) and played in his 100th NHL game on Nov. 6 at St. Louis.
"Zadorov is a big, young, physical defenseman who was starting to emerge as one of our top D before his injury last season," said Avalanche Executive Vice President / General Manager Joe Sakic. "He's an important part of our blue line and we expect him to log big minutes this year. We are excited to have him under contract."
Selected by Buffalo in the first round (16th overall) of the 2013 NHL Draft, Zadorov was acquired by Colorado on June 26, 2015. He has skated in 145 career NHL games with the Sabres and Avalanche, notching 28 points (4g/24a) and 140 penalty minutes.
A native of Moscow, Russia, Zadorov won a bronze medal with his country at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship in Sweden. He led all Russian defensemen with four goals and five points during that tournament. In 2012-13, Zadorov helped the London Knights win the Ontario Hockey League championship and advance to the Memorial Cup, earning a spot on the OHL All-Rookie Team. The following season, Zadorov was named to the 2013-14 OHL Second All-Star Team with London.