Evgeni Malkin lobbying for a new winger
September 2, 2017, 11:26 AM ET [36 Comments]
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I can't lie when I saw this tweet I didn't have a clue who this player was.
After looking up Zaripov's numbers he has had quite the career in the KHL. In 476 games he has 453 points. That is great production for the KHL. Using NHL Numbers point conversion tool it amounts to a 62 point NHL season on average. Not too shabby. The thing that shouldn't be working in Zaripov's favor is that he is currently 36 years old. Although, his production hasn't really dropped off as he navigates his middle thirties. He was recently banned for doping by the KHL and IIHF, but the NHL cleared him
If the NHL cleared him then that's really all that matters.
It makes sense why Evgeni Malkin would mention Zaripov as he has played the last four seasons with Magnitogorsk Metallurg in Malkin's hometown. He has 229 points in 227 games in those games.
Or maybe Malkin wants to sign him because he looks like the Russian Max Talbot.
Zaripov will garner interest from somebody in the NHL. Apparently he is looking for a one year deal and if that is the case age becomes less of a concern and production is the only thing that matters.
Pittsburgh still has to sort out their third line center issue so any potential signing on this front would have to be working in concert with that strategy. There's also the stench of Sergei Plotnikov's signing from Rutherford's first year on the job that may or may not influence another KHL signing.
Personally, I view this like the college free agents. It's a "free" asset and if you think the player can help the team make an offer. If they sign somewhere else, oh well.
Thanks for reading!