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Report: Canucks, Devils, Leafs have strong interest in Flames' Zadorov

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A trio of contenders have their eye on Calgary Flames defenseman Nikita Zadorov.

The New Jersey Devils, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Vancouver Canucks have strong interest in the Russian blue-liner, reports TSN's Darren Dreger, who adds that fellow Calgary rearguards Chris Tanev and Noah Hanifin are also garnering attention from clubs.

However, the Flames aren't rushing to offload those players, according to Dreger.

Zadorov confirmed his trade request to Sportsnet's Pat Steinberg after Calgary's 4-1 loss to the Ottawa Senators on Saturday.

The 28-year-old showcased himself to the Leafs on Friday night, scoring a goal and levelling Toronto forward Tyler Bertuzzi with a big hit.

Zadorov often ranks among the league leaders in hits and boasts 1,615 in his 11-year career. The 6-foot-6, 248-pounder led the NHL with 278 hits in 2017-18 while with the Colorado Avalanche. He's in his third season with the Flames.

The versatile left-shot defenseman is in the final year of a two-year agreement at a $3.75-million cap hit, per CapFriendly, and he's a pending unrestricted free agent. Calgary reportedly paused extension talks with its pending UFAs last month following the team's disappointing start.

Maple Leafs general manager Brad Treliving signed Zadorov to his current pact when he was GM of the Flames in 2022, and he also acquired him for Calgary one year earlier in a trade with the Chicago Blackhawks.

Zadorov has collected four assists in addition to the goal he scored Friday night. He's averaging 18:12 of ice time through 12 games but played only 15:33 in the shootout loss to Toronto.

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