Kirill Kaprizov was on the ice on Thursday morning to practice for the first time at the Tria Rink in St. wild training campParticipation that should not have been remarkable.
The star forward has played only one season on a five-year, $45 million contract, and his next release is highly anticipated following his previous record-breaking performance.
But Kaprizov’s ability to rejoin Wilde was questioned over the summer as uncertainty loomed large for the Russian NHLers while the war in Ukraine continued, ambiguity that eventually cleared when the 25-year-old returned to Minnesota in August.
“We’re glad he’s here,” General Manager Bill Guerin said. “We’re glad she’s safe and sound and ready to go, and she’s excited.
“He’s behind us.”
Speculation about Kaprizov’s whereabouts and whether he could travel to the United States in July leading up to the draft NHL followed a report from Russia that Kaprizov was likely to replace Ivan Fedotov after Philadelphia. Came to America after being taken to a military base in Russia. Because his name was linked to fraudulent military identity.
At the time, Guerin denied that report, telling reporters that Kaprizov was in Russia with friends and family and was “doing fine.” But Kaprizov’s position remained unclear until he returned to the Twin Cities on August 2. Kaprizov needed a work visa, and Guerin said Wilde had “some very, very special people” who were helping to secure it.
“It was harder than we thought,” Guerin said. “We had some problems getting him back in America, we got help from some friends in Washington DC, and we’re extremely grateful for that.
“Kirill was really patient. He did what he had to do. It was a really hard time for him.”
Along with his teammate Matt Zucarello, Kaprizov was asked about the situation after practice on Thursday, but Zucarello was the first to respond, “We’re not going to talk about that. We only want hockey questions.” “
Kaprizov, however, noted through an interpreter that he was not concerned about returning it for the season, before eventually saying, “If we can only question hockey-related topics at this point in time.” If so, I think it would be the best.”
While Guerin said he did not believe Kaprizov was in a situation that was “life threatening or anything like that”, he acknowledged that Wilde was not initially aware of Kaprizov’s safety. Guerin said he was not sure it would be an issue for Kaprizov.
“As long as she’s here, she’s fine and things are good,” Guerin said. “Just let him focus on hockey.”
Based on what Kaprizov has shown so far, hockey should be captivating.
Having crowned the NHL’s top rookie after his first season with Wilde, Kaprizov was even more impressive in his encore: 47 goals, 61 assists and 108 points, an all-team record and production that earned him Wilde’s first 100-point run. Made player and top five scorer in a league. He even got some MVP views, finishing seventh in the voting for the Hart Trophy; He didn’t see much more than a playoff run after scoring seven goals in six games against Central Division rivals St.
His line up with Zucarello and Ryan Hartman, who is coming off his best season with Wilde, rejoined the camp, and the figures of the three were significant. In search of the wild to recover Another first-round exit resulted in the mess that saw the most successful regular season in franchise history. The team has not progressed since 2015.
“Every season, I want to be better and better all the time,” Kaprizov said through an interpreter, “like the results of the team and me.”
What’s better than 100 marks?
“Two hundred,” said Zucarello.
There was a pinch of laughter, but the idea that Kaprizov and everyone else who had years of career years together could avoid becoming a one-hit wonder is tangible to Wilde.
“The challenge has been set,” Guerin said. “We want you to do it again. Let it be the standard for your game because if you do it once, you can do it again.”
When it comes to Kaprizov, another one-up may be more realistic.
“I don’t think we’ve seen the most from Kirill,” Guerin said. “He’s a special player.”