The idea that Nikita Tryamkin could come back to North America for the 2020-21 season has been scrapped, with the big Russian defender signing a new one-year contract with Yekaterinburg of the KHL. Tryamkin had been in contact with the Canucks about a return, but according to Thomas Drance of The Athletic felt there was “too much risk” in waiting given he hasn’t played since February.
Tryamkin will turn 26 at the end of August and is now three years removed from playing in the NHL. He left in 2017 after 79 relatively unsuccessful games with the Canucks and has played for his hometown team in the interim. There was still hope from fans and the Canucks front office that he would one day return and take up residence on the team’s blueline once again, but that hope does seem to be slipping away at this point.
While the Canucks will be able to retain his rights until next summer, Tryamkin will become an unrestricted free agent on his 27th birthday—August 30, 2021. That doesn’t leave a huge window of negotiation given the 2020-21 season will likely end later than normal, and could mean the end of any potential return.