Wednesday: Zborovskiy has cleared waivers and will likely see his contract terminated.
Tuesday: The New York Rangers have placed Sergey Zborovskiy on unconditional waivers for the purpose of mutually terminating his contract. Zborovskiy, a third-round pick by the Rangers in 2015, signed his entry-level contract in the summer of 2016 but spent most of this season in the ECHL. After clearing waivers he will now be able to return to Russia and join the KHL, though he would also technically become an unrestricted free agent eligible to sign with any NHL club.
Zborovskiy, 21, is a big, physical defenseman who put up some fine point totals while in the WHL playing for the Regina Pats, but was always a long shot for the NHL. His skating stride needed work when the Rangers selected him, and apparently hasn’t come far enough for the team to fight to keep him in the organization. This doesn’t necessarily preclude a reunion at some point down the road, but allowing him to go home to compete for minutes in the KHL could be best for his development.
This isn’t the first Russian defenseman the Rangers have lost in this way, after allowing Alexei Bereglazov out of his contract earlier this spring. It’s a tough result for a third-round pick, especially one that was made just two years ago. We’ll see if this affects the way New York targets Russian players in the draft moving forward.