Kuznetsov set up four goals, all by Alexander Ovechkin, in Saturday's 6-1 win over the Canadiens. Ovechkin has been on a rampage, and Kuznetsov has been his set-up man. After a down year in 2016-17 with just 59 points, Kuznetsov is on a tear with seven helpers in just two games. He's back and in a big way.
Kuznetsov set up all three of Alex Ovechkin's goals and scored in the shootout in Thursday's season-opening 5-4 win against Ottawa. This is a duo we can get behind. Kuznetsov had a phenomenal outing, setting up his linemates all night long and racking up four hits. He doesn't need Ovechkin on his wing to produce, but having the Russian sniper as his new linemate certainly could help him improve on the 59 points he recorded last season. The 25-year-old is an elite talent locked into a top-six role, so he's pretty much a must-start whenever the Caps are in action.
Kuznetsov notched a power-play goal and two assists in Wednesday's 4-2 preseason win over Montreal. The 25-year-old center had an excellent preseason debut alongside Alex Ovechkin -- further evidence that the two will begin the season together. The Russian pivot had a bit of a down year in 2016-17 with 59 points in 82 games, but with a new eight-year, $62.4 million contract in hand, looks poised to reclaim his place among the elite fantasy performers for 2017-18 and is worth taking in the early rounds of all formats.
Kuznetsov re-signed with the Capitals on Sunday to an eight-year, $62.4 million contract extension, Dan Rosen of NHL.com reports. The Russian star was offered a KHL contract a few weeks ago, but there was never any real doubt that he'd re-up with the Caps. Kuznetsov only produced 59 points last season after piling up a career-high 77 in 2015-16, but given his new salary cap hit of $7.8 million, the team clearly feels he'll return to his point-per-game ways before long. Now the second highest paid Capital behind fellow Russian Alex Ovechkin, the 25-year-old will be expected to carry a large chunk of the offensive load in D.C. through 2024-25.
Kuznetsov has been offered $6 million annually from KHL SKA to return to his native Russia, JJ Regan of CSN Mid-Atlantic reports. While it seems unlikely Kuznetsov would leave the NHL, this offer will almost certainly play a role in his contract negotiations with the Capitals. The center, who was protected from the expansion draft, will be a restricted free agent on July 1 and it seems likely that he'll receive offers from multiple teams, if only to raise the price tag for Washington. The 25-year-old wasn't quite as productive this year as compared to last -- 59 points in 2016-17 -- but still figures to provide elite level fantasy production for the upcoming campaign.
Rank Among Leaders
Last 7 Games
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