Former Canucks D Nikita Zadorov thanks Vancouver, asks Bruins fans not to call him ‘Big Z’

Photo credit:Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
Mike Gould
10 days ago
Shortly after agreeing to terms with the Boston Bruins on a new six-year, $5 million AAV contract on Monday morning, defenceman Nikita Zadorov shared a heartfelt message to Vancouver Canucks fans to his personal Instagram page.
In a message signed by the Zadorov family, the 29-year-old defenceman expressed his appreciation for all the support he received from fans in Vancouver after being acquired by the Canucks last November.
“Thank you, Vancouver!” Zadorov wrote. “Dear Friends, the Canadian market can be challenging and demanding, but when you embrace it and enjoy it, it becomes the best time of your life. Your passion is what makes this city a fantastic place to play!
“Life moves quickly, and sometimes hard decisions must be made. We believe this is best for our family, but we have cherished every moment of being part of the Vancouver Canucks organization,” Zadorov added. “Thank you to the ownership, management, staff, coaches, and players. A bright future lies ahead!”
In his introductory media availability with Bruins beat writers after signing in Boston on Monday, Zadorov — who will become one of the biggest defenceman to play for the Bruins since Zdeno Chara — asked fans not to call him “Big Z” out of respect for his new team’s former captain.
“I know, on my past teams, people were calling me ‘Big Z,” Zadorov said with a smile. “Please do not ever call me ‘Big Z’ now, because I feel like I’m not even close being half of the ‘Big Z.’ He’s unbelievable, he’s one of the best defensemen of all time. […] He was one of my role models.”
The 6’5″ Zadorov collected five goals and 14 points in 54 games with the Canucks to conclude the 2023-24 regular season after being acquired from the Calgary Flames in exchange for two future draft picks. He added four goals and eight points in 13 playoff games with the club.
Through 642 career NHL games over parts of 11 seasons with the Buffalo Sabres, Colorado Avalanche, Chicago Blackhawks, Flames, and Canucks, Zadorov has collected 47 goals and 146 points while averaging 18:05 of ice time per night. He joined fellow ex-Canuck Elias Lindholm in signing with the Bruins on Monday.

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