Tag: Nikolai Antropov

Nik Antropov

Antropov signs with HC Barys of KHL


We know you’ve been dying to find out which of the “several” KHL teams would land free-agent forward Nikolai Antropov — well, the answer is HC Barys.

The club (based in Astana, Kazakhstan) announced today that Antropov has agreed to a two-year deal.

Antropov, 33, played 26 games for Barys during the lockout, scoring three goals with 13 assists.

In 788 career NHL games with the Jets/Thrashers, Rangers, and Maple Leafs, Antropov had 193 goals and 272 assists.

Report: Several KHL teams pursuing Antropov

Nik Antropov #80 of the Winnipeg Jets skates against the New York Islanders at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on April 5, 2012 in Uniondale, New York. The Islanders defeated the Jets 5-4.
(April 4, 2012 - Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America)

Forward Nikolai Antropov had three goals and 16 points in 26 KHL games during the lockout and it looks like he’ll probably head back there, according to Slava Malamud and Sport-Express. He reportedly has several KHL teams to choose from.

Antropov is coming off a four-year, $16.25 million contract with the Winnipeg Jets. When he originally signed with the then Atlanta Thrashers in the summer of 2009, Antropov was a potential top-line center that could play alongside Ilya Kovalchuk.

Although Kovalchuk ended up being dealt to the New Jersey Devils before the conclusion of Antropov’s first season in Atlanta, the now 33-year-old forward still scored 24 goals and a career-high 67 points in 2009-10. Unfortunately for Antropov, he slipped in the Thrashers/Jets’ depth charts as the years went on and ended up with just 18 points in 40 contests last season.

Antropov was originally selected by the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1998 and has 465 career points in 788 NHL games.

Winnipeg activates Kane from IR, will face Toronto tonight

Evander Kane

The Jets have activated leading goalscorer Evander Kane from injured reserve for tonight’s game against the Maple Leafs, marking the first time the 20-year-old will have suited up since Jan. 19.

While Kane went on IR in mid-January, it’s believed he suffered the concussion against the New York Islanders on Dec. 20. He played the rest of the Isles game and 14 more before the concussion symptoms worsened.

“I don’t think it was affecting my play,” Kane told the Winnipeg Free Press. “It was a long time ago. I got over it quickly. I just wasn’t feeling the same as I was most of the year so I wanted to try to take a step back and rest up and get better.”

According to Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun, Kane will skate on a line with Nikolai Antropov and Kyle Wellwood.

The return couldn’t come at a bigger time for the Jets as they look to stay alive in the Eastern Conference playoff chase. One of the teams Winnipeg’s chasing is Toronto — currently in 7th place with 62 points — while another, Washington, will host the Jets on Thursday. The Caps sit ninth in the East with 58 points, though they’re just one back of Southeast Division-leading Florida.

Winnipeg isn’t ready to blow up its roster…yet

Winnipeg Jets head coach Noel speaks with Antropov and Ladd during NHL pre-season action against the Columbus Blue Jackets in Winnipeg

Things are pretty grim in Winnipeg at the moment.

The Jets have lost four straight and five of seven. They’ve yet to string together more than two straight wins and are buried near the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings. Head coach Claude Noel has repeatedly blasted his team and already played the closed-door meeting card. (Just five games into the year!)

So, what comes next? Talk of shipping people out, of course.

Paul Waldie of the Globe and Mail discussed that possibility after the Jets put forth arguably their worst performance of the year in a 5-2 loss to Florida last night. Winnipeg spotted the Panthers a 4-0 lead after two dismal periods, pushing Noel to tear a strip off his team.


“Right now this is unacceptable. This is not what we’re going to be about moving forward,” Noel said. “You may think this is what we are, but it’s not going to get shaped this way. This is not going to go. This is not what I want, and this will not be the representation that we’re getting.”

Breaking it down, you can see why some are predicting roster changes. Phrases like “this is not what we’re going to be about” and “it’s not going to get shaped this way” and “this is not what I want” all sound like someone that kinda hates the makeup of his squad.

Waldie’s piece notes the Jets aren’t ready to blow things up yet — I wonder if they can blow it up at all. What exactly can they do? Winnipeg likely wants to keep its 25-and-under core of Andrew Ladd, Evander Kane, Blake Wheeler, Bryan Little, Alex Burmistrov, Tobias Enstrom and Zach Bogosian. That doesn’t leave much for NHL GMs to drool over.

Nikolai Antropov could be a nice addition for a playoff team, but not with one year left on his deal at $4 million. Same goes for Ron Hainsey, only he’s even more expensive ($4.5 million). Johnny Oduya’s unrestricted this year and could fetch Winnipeg something, but what? And will trading him really fix the problem?

Speaking of problems, there’s Dustin Byfuglien’s five-year, $26 million deal — the problem being Byfuglien has been terrible since signing it. Winnipeg inherited that deal from the old Thrashers regime (be sure to thank Rick Dudey, Jets fans) and it’s now about as movable as concrete.

So sure, Winnipeg might eventually want to ship players out. That’s the easy part.

The hard part will be finding teams to ship them to.