Kirill Kaprizov is one of the NHL’s brightest young stars but before he was on the ice winning the Calder Trophy or putting up 53 points in 40 games this season he was a big fan of Evgeny Kuznetsov.
Such a big fan that he named his cat ‘Kuzy’ after watching Kuznetsov lead Russia to a gold medal at the 2011 World Juniors.
Kuznetsov led that Russian team, which also featured Vladimir Tarasenko and Dmitry Orlov, in scoring with 11 points in seven games. He only trailed Brayden Schenn for Canada in the overall point-scoring race.
“I really loved the way Kuzy played so we were trying to think of a name for the cat and I just said, ‘Let’s go with Kuzy.’,” Kaprizov told Star Tribune Sports’ Sarah McLellan.
Kaprizov and Kuznetsov first shared the ice together for Russia at the World Championships after the 2018-19 season, winning a bronze medal against Czechia.
“I love how skilled he is, how well he thinks about the game,” Kaprizov continued about Kuznetsov.
Kaprizov was Minnesota’s leading scorer last season and looks primed to easily repeat that feat this season with 53 points (19g, 34a) in 40 games.
“He’s basically the superstar right now. I’m so happy for him,” Kuznetsov said of Kaprizov at his own All-Star media session.
Headline photo via @kirillkaprizov/Instagram
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