In a story that has been worthy of Abbott and Costello at points due to the vast amounts of misunderstandings, Kirill Kaprizov has finally sat down with Minnesota Wild GM Chuck Fletcher, nearly three years after the team selected the Russian forward in the fifth round. Michael Russo of The Athletic has been following the story closely since the beginning, and now reports that Fletcher met with Kaprizov and fellow prospect Andrei Svetlakov on Tuesday night.
Kaprizov is a dynamic forward who has found nearly unparalleled success in the KHL for a player of his age, registering 42 points in 49 games last year at 19, and 36 in 38 games this season at 20. His offensive upside makes him one of the most interesting prospects in the game, and one that Minnesota would put on their NHL squad right now if they had the chance. Unfortunately, as Russo explains, Kaprizov is signed through the 2019-20 season and neither side has talked about a potential buyout. The Wild won’t lose his rights, but they’ll have to wait a while for him to come to North America.
In the meantime, Wild fans will likely be able to see him in some international competitions. While he’s not guaranteed a spot on the Olympic team, there’s a good chance we’ll see Kaprizov suit up in the World Championships at some point. If Fletcher can continue to create a relationship, perhaps we’ll see him in a Minnesota uniform in fall of 2020.