The Vegas Golden Knights have landed an interesting Russian prospect, signing Ivan Morozov to a two-year entry-level contract. The deal begins in 2022-23, and Morozov has signed a professional tryout with the Henderson Silver Knights for the rest of this season.
Selected 61st overall in 2018, Morozov has been playing in the KHL for the last few seasons and even scored 31 points in 55 games during the 2020-21 campaign. Unfortunately, he ended up demoted to SKA St. Petersburg’s VHL team for part of this year and then was moved to HK Sochi, where he had three points in five games to end the year.
A representative for Russia at two World Juniors and last summer’s World Championship it was a curious fall for Morozov this season in the SKA program. Even in his 17 games with the KHL club he managed eight points, a fine performance for someone who was receiving just 15 minutes a night. Those minutes skyrocketed in his short stint with Sochi, as the young forward averaged over 20 minutes for his five games there, with the brief glimpse in January showing that he could still compete at that level.
Coming to North America now certainly seems like the right move, especially given how the Golden Knights will be desperately looking for inexpensive contributions next season as they continue to deal with salary cap issues. Morozov could very well break camp with the team in the fall should he perform well enough, or at least come up at some point during the regular season.