Sports Leafs’ Nikita Soshnikov has option to return to KHL if he’s not in the NHL next week

08:40  09 november  2017
08:40  09 november  2017 Source:   Toronto Star

Maple Leafs recall Nikita Soshnikov, demote Frederik Gauthier

  Maple Leafs recall Nikita Soshnikov, demote Frederik Gauthier he Toronto Maple Leaf have recalled forward Nikita Soshnikov from the Toronto Marlies, ensuring the Russian remains with the organization at least for the time being. The 24-year-old Soshnikov reportedly has a clause in his contact allowing him to return to Russia if he was not in the NHL by Nov. 14. Soshnikov ranked second in scoring with the Marlies with 12 points this season on five goals and seven assists. He saw action in 56 games last season for the Leafs, collecting five goals and four assists. Soshnikov signed with the Leafs as a free agent in 2014. He is a restricted free agent July 1.

The Maple Leafs have a bit of a ticking time bomb with Nikita Soshnikov ’ s contract. If the 24-year-old Russian forward, currently with the Toronto Marlies of the American Hockey League , is not in the NHL by Tuesday, he has the right to return to the KHL .

Nikita Soshnikov , who has yet to appear in a game this season with the Toronto Maple Leafs , instead spending all his time with the Marlies, has a clause in his contract that would allow him to return to the KHL on loan, potentially for the Is Nikita Soshnikov going to be the next Josh Leivo/Frank Corrado?

Nikita Soshnikov has been stuck in the AHL since the start of the season, but he has an out in his contract.© John E. Sokolowski Nikita Soshnikov has been stuck in the AHL since the start of the season, but he has an out in his contract.

The Maple Leafs have a bit of a ticking time bomb with Nikita Soshnikov’s contract. If the 24-year-old Russian forward, currently with the Toronto Marlies of the American Hockey League, is not in the NHL by Tuesday, he has the right to return to the KHL.

“At that time if he is not called up to the NHL he has the option to go to Russia,” Dan Milstein, Soshnikov’s agent, told the Star. “It will be up to the general manager and the coaching staff to make a decision.

“In my opinion, Nikita Soshnikov is an NHL player.”

Auston Matthews returns to practice as Leafs prepare for Devils

  Auston Matthews returns to practice as Leafs prepare for Devils Auston Matthews took to the ice to practice with the Maple Leafs for the first time in more than a week.Matthews, out with an undisclosed upper body injury, resumed his spot as the No. 1 centre between William Nylander and Zach Hyman.The Maple Leafs have won their last four in a row, the last three without Matthews. He missed the first game of his career Nov. 8 against Minnesota.Nikita Soshnikov was also on the ice practising with the Leafs for the first time this season. He was recalled from the minors on Tuesday, in time to meet a contract-related deadline.

Just because Nikita Soshnikov has only recorded 14 points in 67 NHL games, it shouldn’t fool you into thinking he can’t be an impact player at the NHL With his contract expiring at the end of this season, Soshnikov could opt to bolt to the KHL , as the Leafs still may not have a spot for him next year.

TORONTO — Unlike fellow Toronto Maple Leafs rookie William Nylander, Nikita Soshnikov didn’t make his NHL debut last week with a year’ s worth of hype and anticipation. But in very short order the 22-year-old winger has made a noisy impression.

Milstein confirmed the clause to the Star after TSN’s Pierre LeBrun first reported it.

Soshnikov failed to make the Leafs out of training camp and was sent to the minors in part because of a numbers game. He did not require waivers to be sent to the Marlies, but he will once he plays three more NHL games.

It is possible the Leafs could convince Soshnikov to remain in the AHL, but it would require further negotiation with Milstein. Soshnikov is a restricted free agent July 1.

If he remains in the minors as of Tuesday, Soshnikov does not have to exercise his option to move back to Russia right away. He can choose to go later.

Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello did not offer a comment. But if in anjury or a trade does not materialize, Lamoriello’s hand may be forced while other teams peruse the Leafs roster to see how this may fall in their favour.

Babcock: Leafs want Soshnikov ‘for a long time to come’

  Babcock: Leafs want Soshnikov ‘for a long time to come’ There is no reason to believe Nikita Soshnikov would have been recalled by the Toronto Maple Leafs this week if his European assignment clause wasn’t about to kick in. But there should be no confusion about how highly the organization values the 24-year-old winger, who is being inserted directly into the lineup for Thursday’s game against New Jersey.“The reality is we want him to be a Leaf for a long time to come,” said head coach Mike Babcock.They’re going to have to carve out a role for him to ensure it happens.

Leafs ' Nikita Soshnikov could return to Russia to get more playing time. (Michael Peake/Toronto Sun). Not that the former winger with Atlant in the KHL would jump next Tuesday at first chance.

Toronto Maple Leafs forward Nikita Soshnikov has been passed over on the depth chart by Kasperi Kapanen after a rough season. The 23-year old Soshnikov has one more year on his entry-level contract left, and will be a UFA next July. Options for Soshnikov .

To call up Soshnikov, the Leafs would have to create a roster spot. The only player the Leafs can send to the Marlies who doesn’t require waivers is Frederik Gauthier, who was just recalled as a depth centre with Auston Matthews missing Wednesday’s game with an upper-body injury.

The Leafs, who have just loaned Eric Fehr to the AHL San Diego Gulls, are loathe to lose a player for nothing. Under Lamoriello, they have found imaginative ways to hold on to players, including a liberal use of provisions for injured reserve and conditioning stints within the collective bargaining agreement.

The Leafs signed Soshnikov as a free agent in 2014, when he was one of the promising youngsters coming out of the KHL. He spent most of last season on the NHL roster, but suffered a series of injuries.

He has seven goals and seven assists in 67 career NHL games, and three goals and six assists in 11 games with the Marlies this season.

“Nikita Soshnikov had an accomplished KHL career before coming to the NHL,” Milstein said. He came here because he wants to play in the NHL. We’re patiently waiting until Nov. 14.

“I don’t want to speculate. I have a great relationship with Lou. Nikita is having a great season in the AHL. Of course he wants to be in the NHL. We’ll let the system work itself out.”

Maple Leafs nearing deadline on Nikita Soshnikov decision .
Maple Leafs nearing deadline on Nikita Soshnikov decision“Maple Leafs fans are well-aware of this situation: Nikita Soshnikov, on Tuesday, if he’s not in the NHL he has the right to go back overseas,” Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman said during Saturday’s Headlines on Hockey Night in Canada.

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