The KHL announced today the 19 players selected by Admirals Vladivostok for their inaugural season. Two players, Enver Lisin and Niclas Bergfors, highlighted the new roster. Both were former high profile draft picks and recent NHL players that will play in the far eastern team’s first season.
Lisin was selected 50th overall in 2004 by the Phoenix Coyotes. He would get 17 games in the 2006-2007 season, but would not be a mainstay with the team in future seasons. Lisin would jump back and forth between the Coyotes, the AHL’s San Antonio Rampage and the KHL’s Ak Bars Kazan. The Russian-born player would have his best season in 2007-2008 between San Antonio and Phoenix. After a trade with the New York Rangers, he would play 57 games, but only scored 14 points. Lisin would not be resigned in the 2010 offseason and he has played the past three seasons with Metallurg Magnitogorsk.
A season later, Bergfors would enter the league as the 23rd overall pick with the New Jersey Devils. He would spend his first three seasons with AHL affiliate Lowell Devils, getting in one game in Newark in 2007-2008. Bergfors, a Swedish native, would get 51 points in 66 games with Lowell the next season and also eight games with New Jersey where he scored his first NHL goal. He would split the next season between New Jersey and Atlanta (part of a trade for Ilya Kovalchuk) and have his best NHL performance with 44 points. The next season would be split between Atlanta and Florida, where he would again be part of a trade, this time for Radek Dvorak. In 2011, he signed a one-year free agent contract with the Nashville Predators, but was released after just 11 games. Vladivostok will be his seventh team in just four seasons.
The KHL did not release all of the players available to Vladivostok. However, Oblast Moscow made public that journeyman Nikolay Zherdev would be up for grabs. Ultimately, he was not selected by the Admirals.
Belarusian national player and KHL 2009-2010 playoff “Sniper of the Year” Alexei Ugarov was selected. Goalkeeper Yevgeny Ivannikov and several other young players were listed on EliteProspects.com and other sites, but no other players made the THW 2013 NHL Draft Rankings.
The KHL also announced their 2013-2014 schedule and playoff format at today’s news conference. More details on today’s expansion draft can be found at EuroHockey.com and the official announcement on the KHL website.
My name is Tim Bourcier and I am contributor for the Washington Capitals and hockey in Europe. Prior to working with The Hockey Writers, I worked with a professional hockey club in Budapest, Hungary. I also wrote articles for the MOL Liga and international hockey tournaments. I am near a PhD in Economics and I have eight years work experience as a statistician.
You can check out my previous work, new stuff and wonky analysis over at my blog: bourciertm.wordpress.com. Also, check out my blog for the KHL team in my home city at www.bearshockeyblog.com