After being heavily mentioned in trade rumors, Nikita Zadorov has been traded to the Vancouver Canucks, per Vancouver's X announcement. The Canucks have had a blazing start to the 2023-24 NHL season, but they are not settling. Vancouver enticed the Calgary Flames to make a mutually beneficial deal.

Nikita Zadorov should bolster the Canucks' defensive depth

Calgary sent Zadorov to Vancouver in exchange for a fifth-round pick in the 2024 NHL Entry Draft (acquired from Chicago). In addition, the Flames will receive a third-round pick in 2026. The Flames' 9-10 start to the season likely played a part in the team's dealing with Zadarov.

Zadarov was one of many Calgary defensemen to be mentioned in trade rumors. The Toronto Maple Leafs could have been in the mix to acquire the veteran, but the Canucks jumped the gun.

Carson Soucy's lower-body injury has hurt Vancouver's defensive depth. However, his hiatus allowed the Canucks to acquire another productive player. Nikita Zadorov has scored one goal during the 2023-24 season, but he has five assists and six points.

The 28-year-old should get a boost in spirit after being traded to a contending team. Vancouver boasts a  second place standing in the Pacific Division. Nevertheless, the franchise's move for Zadorov is no surprise considering the comments of GM Patrik Allvin.

“We're always looking to get better,” Allvin said after a team practice on November 29th. “That’s what I like about the coaching staff here. Their mindset is ‘how do we get better next day?’ That’s the only thing they can control.”

Vancouver's growth mindset is reflected in their trade with the Flames. Nikita Zadorov should provide useful depth to the Canucks' defense as the season progresses.