Nikita Zadorov Pricing Himself Out Of Vancouver

Nikita Zadorov is having a great playoffs, but two solid rounds isn't enough to get players much more on a contract than they were initially going to get. It appears as though the big Vancouver Canucks defenseman thinks otherwise.

The Canucks had their defense reworked this season and Zadorov was one of the pieces brought in to do so, but he has served on the third pairing most times. He's only 29 years old and really showing an overall ability to perform when it matters, but both Frank Seravalli and Elliotte Friedman say that Zadorov believes he is getting $6 million AAV for six years on his next deal as he is a UFA this summer. Even with Tyler Myers' contract ending, this is a lot to commit to Zadorov.

It is a great time to have a real offensive breakout, but again, it has been 11 games. Don't get me wrong, four goals, eight points, 15 blocked shots, and 39 hits is impressive, but he's shooting way above a normal shooting percentage at 19%. Zadorov is also playing three minutes more per game than in the 54 regular season games for the Canucks this season where he got five goals and 14 points.

It is a big step-up and deserving of more money on his next contract than what he's currently getting ($3.75 million AAV), but to nearly double it and be signed long-term after such a small sample size might not turn out the way he thinks. If he is able to play like a top-four defenseman and then have another strong playoff showing next season, then he might deserve what he's asking for. The Canucks have to be careful as his current game is the best he's ever played in his 11 year career.

Photo credit: © Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports