The Minnesota Wild are expecting Alexander Khovanov back in North America for the 2021-22 season, according to Michael Russo of The Athletic. The 21-year-old forward played in Russia this year on loan from the Wild, suiting up mostly in the VHL where he was once again a dynamic offensive presence.
Selected in the third round in 2018, Khovanov turned into a superstar with the Moncton Wildcats of the QMJHL, scoring 32 goals and 99 points in just 51 games during the 2019-20 season. He also helped team Russia to a silver medal at the World Juniors that year, and this season posted 24 points in 30 VHL games. With two years still remaining on his entry-level deal, Khovanov is likely ticketed for the AHL should he spend this year in North America, but his future is still bright in the Minnesota organization.
- Jaden Schwartz endured a poor season on the ice in 2020-21, but he almost didn’t play at all. The new Seattle Kraken forward spoke with Jeremy Rutherford of The Athletic and acknowledged that after the sudden passing of his father last year, he considered forfeiting his salary and skipping this season. Now heading into a new chapter in his career, leaving the only team he has ever known in the St. Louis Blues for an expansion club, Schwartz tells Rutherford he feels “fresh again.” The 29-year-old Schwartz signed a five-year, $27.5MM contract with the Kraken on the first day of free agency.
- The U.S. team took home a 3-0 victory over Finland at the IIHF Women’s World Championship last night and there was some history made in the process. Hilary Knight scored her 44th goal in tournament history, tying her with Cammi Granato for the most all-time. The 32-year-old Knight already has eight World Championship gold medals to her name and will almost certainly cement herself as the all-time goals leader at the Worlds over the next few days. Granato meanwhile was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2011 and is now working as a pro scout for the Kraken.