The Toronto Maple Leafs announced Tuesday that the club has signed defenceman Nikita Zaitsev to a seven-year contract extension. The annual value of the contract is $4.50 million in each season through to 2023-24.
Zaitsev, 25, skated in all 82 regular season games with the Maple Leafs this past season, registering 36 points (four goals, 32 assists) and 38 penalty minutes. His 36 points ranked second among all Maple Leaf defencemen. The Moscow, Russia native also appeared in four playoff games with Toronto.
Zaitsev originally signed a one-year entry level contract with the Maple Leafs last summer. He also collected two assists in four games with Team Russia at the World Cup of Hockey in 2016. Prior to coming to North America, Zaitsev skated in 317 regular season games in the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL), registering 95 points (32 goals, 63 assists).