Veteran Winger Eyes NHL Return

Earlier this week, James Nichols shared that Nikita Gusev was spotted at the Devils’ development camp.

Gusev is aiming for an NHL comeback next season. He had a mixed two-year stint in the NHL before returning to the KHL.

In 2019-20, Gusev played well with New Jersey, scoring 13 goals and 31 assists over 66 games. But his next season wasn’t great; he managed only two goals and three assists in 20 games before his contract was terminated. Afterward, he briefly joined Florida and added five points in 11 games.

Gusev’s Journey Back to KHL:

Failing to attract much interest in free agency, Gusev went back to the KHL for the 2021-22 season with SKA St. Petersburg. He performed well there, averaging over a point per game across two seasons. Then he switched to Dynamo Moscow for the 2023-24 campaign after his contract with SKA ended.

With Dynamo Moscow, Gusev had an amazing season leading the league in assists (66) and points (89) while playing all 68 games. In nine postseason contests, he scored ten more points. This was his second time leading KHL in scoring; first being in 2018-19 before moving to NHL.

Fans might think it’s exciting that he’s trying for another shot at NHL despite past struggles.

Despite offers from Dynamo Moscow and other KHL teams, Gusev hasn’t signed any new deal yet because he’s eyeing another chance in NHL.

Given how things ended last time and most teams having set their rosters already this summer, it’s unlikely Gusev will get a $4.5M AAV like before. But if a team needs some offensive flair and finds his asking price reasonable, Gusev could be an interesting addition soon.

What do you think about him returning?

Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson is a Senior Writer for HockeyMonitor. With a background in Sports Media, Alex joined the team in 2022. He focuses on providing the latest hockey news, game scores, and fresh NHL trade rumors.

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