One of the more interesting notes from Chuck Fletcher’s media availability this morning (apart from the confirmation that Mike Yeo will not return as head coach) is that the Philadelphia Flyers are working on a contract with Ivan Fedotov and expect to agree to terms in the near future. The general manager explained that it is complicated because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but is confident they will ultimately be able to work out a contract and bring him to North America for next season.
Fedotov, 25, was a seventh-round pick of the Flyers way back in 2015 and has been slowly developing into one of the best netminders in Russia ever since. This season he was the starter at the Olympics, posting a .943 save percentage in six games and winning a silver medal, and then returned to CSKA Moscow to take his club all the way to a Gagarin Cup championship. Fedotov had an eye-popping .937 save percentage in 22 playoff appearances, allowing a goals-against-average of just 1.85.
It was at the Olympics when Fedotov suggested to reporters that he was planning on coming to North America next season, and it appears as though there could be an NHL spot waiting for him when he arrives. Fletcher indicated that the big netminder will compete for the backup NHL role, should he be signed.
Standing 6’8″, you likely aren’t going to find a goaltender that fills the net as much as Fedotov, but it’s not just his frame that has allowed him to reach a high level. His overall play has steadily improved over the last several years, as he was brought along through the junior and minor leagues. Now a real option for an NHL team, the Flyers could be getting a ton of value out of a late-round pick that happened well before this management regime was installed.