Maple Leafs sign Russian forward Alexander Barabanov

By Sports Desk April 07, 2020

The Toronto Maple Leafs have signed forward Alexander Barabanov to a one-year, entry-level contract for the 2020-21 season.

The 25-year-old Russian had 11 goals and nine assists in 43 games for SKA Saint Petersburg of the Kontinental Hockey League this campaign. 

Barabanov has spent his career in the KHL with SKA, recording 62 goals and 75 assists in 262 games.

In playoff action, Barabanov had 11 goals and 12 assists in 68 games, helping SKA win the KHL Garagin Cup in 2015 and 2017.

Barabanov was part of Russia's gold medal-winning team at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, and he also represented his country three times at the IIHF World Championship while posting four goals and 10 assists in 28 matches.

Speaking last week, Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas said of Barabanov: "He's not tall, but he's a very strong winger.

"[He has] tremendous playmaking ability, great skill level in tight. But I think that one of the other things we like most about him is his ability to make plays under pressure and his ability to win pucks, protect pucks when people come after him and use his strength to be able to do that."

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