Nikita Gusev, the reigning MVP of the Kontinental Hockey League, is joining the Vegas Golden Knights for their playoff run.
He signed a one-year, entry-level contract with the Golden Knights on Sunday and is expected to practice with the team on Monday.
Vegas and the San Jose Sharks were tied 1-1 in their best-of-7 series entering Sunday’s Game 3 in Las Vegas.
“He’ll join our group (Monday) and we’ll see where it goes,” Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant told reporters. “I’m not going to make any promises either way. We’ll see what happens. I like our team. I’ve liked our team all year. If we think we need him to put in the lineup, we’ll see where it goes.”
Gusev, 26, has been on the roster of SKA St. Petersburg since the 2015-16 season. He led the league in scoring this season with 82 points (17 goals, 65 assists). He was released from his contract this week after SKA St. Petersburg was eliminated in the KHL conference finals.
He has played nine seasons in the KHL and was part of Russia’s gold-medal team in the 2018 Winter Olympics.
The Tampa Bay Lightning drafted him in the seventh round of the 2012 NHL Draft. Vegas acquired his rights in a trade with Tampa Bay during the 2017 NHL Expansion Draft.
—Field Level Media