The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed forward Sergei Plotnikov to a one-year entry-level contract, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.
Plotnikov, 25, has played the past six years in Russia’s top professional league, the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL), improving his offensive numbers each season, including this past year when he was selected to play in his second KHL All-Star Game.
A 6-foot-2, 205-pound physical presence, Plotnikov completed his third year with Lokomotiv Yaroslavl in 2014-15, establishing career highs in both assists (21) and points (36) while scoring 15 goals in 56 games. Plotnikov served as one of Lokomotiv’s alternate captains.
This past spring, the Komsomolsk-na-Amure, Russia native teamed with Evgeni Malkin to help Russia capture a silver medal at the World Championship, where he had two points (1G-1A) in 10 contests.
Plotnikov enjoyed perhaps his best all-around season in ’13-14 when he followed up on a banner season with Lokomotiv, which advanced deep into the KHL playoffs, by starring for Russia at the ’14 World Championship.
Plotnikov and the Russians captured gold at the ’14 World Championship, with the feisty forward making the tournament All-Star Team after finishing third overall in scoring with 12 points (6G-6A) in 10 games.
During that year’s KHL season, Plotnikov posted his highest regular-season point-per-game average (0.66), tallying 35 points (15G-20A) in 53 games. His numbers were even better during the postseason, when he notched four goals, 10 assists and 14 points in 18 contests.
In total, Plotnikov skated in 300 KHL regular-season games with Lokomotiv and Amur Khabarovsk, scoring 68 goals, 78 assists and 146 points. He added 18 points (6G-12A) in 32 playoff games.