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Burmistrov happy to be back in Winnipeg

by Ryan Dittrick (@ryandittrick) / Winnipeg Jets

WINNIPEG – A surprise visitor made an appearance on Day 3 of Winnipeg Jets Development Camp Sunday.

“I want to come and meet everybody."

Fresh off signing a new two-year contract, Alexander Burmistrov is back in town and will be throughout the summer as he prepares for training camp this fall.

"I'm happy to be here," he said.

Burmistrov spent the past two years with Kazan Ak-Bars of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL), tallying 20 goals and 64 points in 108 games after spending the first three years of his professional career with the Atlanta Thrashers/Jets organization. The eighth pick in the 2010 Draft, Burmistrov has 194 NHL games to his name, recording 23 goals and 35 assists over three seasons ending in 2012-13.

“I was the hometown boy and fans wanted to see something from me,” Burmistrov said of Kazan. “Lots of pressure.”

Asked whether or not his game has evolved after honing his craft overseas, Burmistrov couldn’t say for sure, but did emphasize his passion for the “aggressive” NHL style: “The smaller ice, the aggressive hockey. I missed this game. … I’m two years older. I don’t know if I’m a
different player or not.

“We’ll see.”

Talk of a return began over a year ago when the 23-year-old met Head Coach Paul Maurice at the IIHF World Championship in Minsk.

“That conversation meant a lot,” Burmistrov said. “I don’t know how to explain it, but at that time I knew I really wanted to come back.

“I’m really excited. … I want to help the team win games.”

-- Ryan Dittrick,

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