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Zadorov

Dale Hunter: Sabres fans will love Zadorov



The London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League have a history of turning out NHL defensemen with Dan Girardi, Michael Del Zotto, Dennis Wideman, Kyle Quincey and Marc Methot among their alumni currently in the league.  The Buffalo Sabres are hoping Nikita Zadorov will eventually be added to that list.
 
The 6'4", 200 pound Russian native was selected by the Sabres with the 16th pick in Sunday's draft, the second of two blue liners chosen by the Sabres in round one.
 
Zadorov's coach in London is Dale Hunter and he joined the WGR morning show on Tuesday to give Sabres fans some insight on the 18 year old Zadorov.
 
The scouting reports tout his ability to play a physical, nasty style of hockey and Hunter, who knows a few things about playing a physical, nasty game in the NHL, says those reports are on target. Hunter saw it up close this past season, Zadorov's first in the OHL.
 
"When you’re that big, you’re a little bit clumsy and stuff but he kept on getting better" Hunter said. " He kept on getting better the whole year.  I like him because he’s offense, also good defensively and he hits a ton.  He had the biggest hits on our team and he’s not afraid to hit anybody on the other team, no matter who it is."
Hunter said Zadorov won over his teammates immediately when he fought one of the toughest players in the OHL in his very first game.  Zadorov went looking for the fight after a big hit against one of his new teammates.
 
Zadorov led all rookies with a plus 33 rating this past season and ranked second among first year defensemen in points with 25(6 goals and 19 assists).  He's made a name for himself with his play on defense but Hunter believes Zadorov  has some serious upside when it comes to offensive contributions.
 
 “You’ll be pleasantly surprised.  He’s untapped" Hunter said.  "We’re figuring on big things from him this year with his one timer from the point on the power play.  He can skate through the neutral zone carrying the puck and he can beat guys one on one."
You can hear the entire interview with Dale Hunter:

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Topics : Sports
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Locations : London
People : Dale HunterDan GirardiDennis WidemanKyle QuinceyMarc MethotMichael Del ZottoNikita Zadorov
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