Reading, PA – The Reading Royals of the ECHL, affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins of the National Hockey League and the Toronto Marlies of the American Hockey League, today announced that the team has signed forward Vladimir Nikiforov to an ECHL contract.
A third year pro from Hauppauge, New York, Nikiforov began this season with the Florida Everblades of the ECHL and played three games prior to being traded to the Bakersfield Condors. While with Bakersfield, Nikiforov scored two goals and assisted on another in eight games. Last season, Nikiforov scored 19 goals and picked up 32 assists for 51 points in 61 games with the Utah Grizzlies of the ECHL.
In his rookie season, Nikiforov started the season with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the AHL prior to being assigned to Utah in late October. While with the Grizzlies that fall, Nikiforov earned the opportunity to represent Utah at the 2009 ECHL All-Star festivities, but was unable to participate in the mid-season classic because he had been re-called to Bridgeport in early January. Prior to turning pro, Nikiforov played a total of 179 games over three seasons in the OHL for the Barrie Colts and Sarnia Sting, registering a total of 173 points (63g-110a).