Dmitry Chesnokov reported that the 23-year-old winger had signed with Donbass of the Kontinental Hockey League. Though the Carolina Hurricanes couldn’t confirm the report, Donbass’ team website has appeared to do so today.
Dadonov, acquired by the Hurricanes in a mid-January AHL trade with Florida, played in the KHL as recently as the 2008-09 season with Traktor. Rumors of him going back to his native country had spawned months ago, so this move was one the Canes’ front office expected.
“Even in the scenario where he goes to Russia next year, organizationally, we still think we’ve taken a step forward,” said Jason Karmanos, executive vice president and assistant general manager, in January. “It’s worth the chance to see what there is with this player and his potential.”
Dadonov was one of seven restricted free agent the Hurricanes qualified. The team will retain his rights while he is overseas, along with prospects Oskar Osala and Mike Murphy, who are also playing in Russia.
Dadonov compiled 19 points (3g, 16a) in 35 games with Charlotte since joining the Carolina organization. In 55 career NHL games with the Panthers, Dadonov scored 10 goals and recorded 10 assists (20 points).