Way back in October there was this news…
Per @plysenkov Kyle Dubas had meetings with Mikhail Grigorenko and Nikita Nesterov while being in Russia. Both will be UFAs next year #LeafsForever
— Igor Eronko (@IgorEronko) October 14, 2019
I remember it because TLN did a post on it.
Anyway, between Zaitsev, Ozhiganov, Soshnikov, and Mikheyev, the Leafs have a proud history of bringing Russian free agents over and I am admittedly intrigued by both Grigorenko and Nesterov.
The history up until this season
Prior to the 2017-18 season, both of these players were attempting to find their footing in the NHL. Grigorenko had the benefit of being a 1st round pick and that bought him a fair number of chances to succeed. He didn’t. Some of that was on the Sabres for burying him in their bottom six and not giving an offensive talent a chance to play with other offensive players. Some of that was on Grigorenko for not adapting to his role. Either way, he was only averaging about 13 minutes a night in North America, and his best years came after his trade to Colorado when he a 27 point season career high, followed up with a season …
Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation