Apr 7, 2013; Buffalo, NY, USA; New Jersey Devils center Andrei Loktionov (21) during the game against the Buffalo Sabres at the First Niagara Center. Sabres beat the Devils 3-2 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Andrei Loktionov 2013-14 Preview

Andrei Loktionov is looking at a 3rd-line start this season at center. He hopes to further prove his worth this season as his contract expires once again at the end of this season.

His Past

Loktionov entered the NHL with the Los Angeles Kings and played a game for them in 2009-10 and spent most of his time with the Manchester Monarchs. He had 9 goals and 15 assists in 29 games for the Monarchs that season. In the AHL playoffs, Loktionov played in 16 games and had 1 goal and 8 assists.

March 21, 2013; Raleigh, NC, USA; New Jersey Devils center Andrei Loktionov (21) celebrates his 3rd period goal against the Carolina Hurricanes at the PNC center. The Devils defeated the Hurricanes 4-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

The next season he played 34 more games with the Monarchs and had 8 goals and 23 assists. He also played 19 games with the Kings and had 4 goals and 3 assists. The season after he played 39 games with the Kings and had 3 goals and 4 assists. He played in 2 games during the Kings’ Stanley Cup run but didn’t score a point. With the Monarchs he played 32 games and had 5 goals and 15 assists.

Last season was a busy season for him. He played 37 more games with the Monarchs and had 7 goals and 15 points. Once the New Jersey Devils acquired him he would end up playing 28 games for the NHL squad and would have 8 goals and 4 assists. He also played in 3 games with the Albany Devils and had 0 points. He also represented Russia in the World Championships this past year. He played in 7 games and had 1 assist.

What to Expect

I think we can expect a good season from Loktionov. I don’t think he would ever really move down in line position and there is 0% chance he goes to Albany this year unless he is REALLY struggling.

Loktionov should improve this year and have a favorable season. His contract expires at the end of this year but is a restricted free agent again so the Devils will most likely lock him up again if he has a decent season.

The Devils will most likely need his skill set so there is a very good chance that they will keep him around no matter what.

Stay tuned for the 3rd-to-last preview, Adam Larsson.

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