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Alexei Emelin
Alexei Emelin - Montreal Canadiens 2015.jpg
Emelin with the Montreal Canadiens in 2015
Born (1986-04-25) 25 April 1986 (age 37)
Tolyatti, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Height 6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Weight 214 lb (97 kg; 15 st 4 lb)
Position Defence
Shoots Left
KHL team
Former teams
Free agent
Lada Togliatti
Ak Bars Kazan
Montreal Canadiens
Nashville Predators
Avangard Omsk
Dinamo Minsk
Spartak Moscow
National team Flag of Russia.svg Russia
NHL Draft 84th overall, 2004
Montreal Canadiens
Playing career 2003–present

Alexei Vyacheslavovich Emelin (Russian: Алексей Вячеславович Емелин; born 25 April 1986) is a Russian professional ice hockey defenceman who is currently an unrestricted free agent. He most recently played for HC Spartak Moscow of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL). Emelin was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in the third round, 84th overall, of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft.

Playing career

Early career

Emelin spent a large portion of his career with Lada Togliatti in the Russian Superleague (RSL) before signing with Ak Bars Kazan. He was also a member of Russia's under-18 and under-20 national squads, and has also become a regular member of the senior national team, skating for both in EuroTour and the World Championships.

In a Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) game in 2009, Emelin sustained a face injury during a fight with Alexander Svitov; an orbital bone shattered and had to be rebuilt with metal plate. He has tried to avoid getting into fights ever since the incident.

Aleksey Emelin - Switzerland vs. Russia, 8th April 2011 (1)
Emelin playing for Russia in 2011

Montreal Canadiens

On 17 May 2011, Emelin signed a one-year, two-way contract with the Montreal Canadiens for the 2011–12 season. He played his first regular season NHL game on 9 October, in a 5–1 victory against the Winnipeg Jets. In addition, he scored his first regular season NHL point, an assist, on 6 December, in a game against the Columbus Blue Jackets. On 25 January 2012, he scored his first NHL goal against the Detroit Red Wings.

On 30 June 2012, Emelin signed a two-year extension up until the end of the 2013–14 season.

Alexei Emelin - Montreal Canadiens
Emelin with the Montreal Canadiens in 2012

During the lockout shortened 2012–13 season, Emelin established himself as a key member of the Canadiens' defensive core, often playing with fellow countryman Andrei Markov. He scored three goals and 12 points in 38 games for the Canadiens and finished with a plus-minus rating of +2. His season, however, was derailed by an injury during a game against the Boston Bruins on 6 April 2013, when Emelin collided with Bruins forward Milan Lucic, falling awkwardly and tearing a ligament in his left knee. As a result, Emelin missed the remainder of the regular season and the playoffs. On 31 October 2013, he signed a four-year contract extension with Montreal, lasting through the 2017–18 season.

Nashville Predators

After his sixth season with the Canadiens, Emelin was left exposed at the 2017 NHL Expansion Draft. He was selected by the Vegas Golden Knights on 21 June 2017. On 1 July 2017, the Golden Knights traded Emelin to the Nashville Predators in exchange for a third-round pick in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. Vegas retained approximately $1.2 million USD of Emelin's salary in the trade. Emelin skated in 76 games with the Predators in his lone season with the club, as well as 10 postseason games.

Avangard Omsk

On 2 September 2018, Emelin returned as a free agent to the KHL, signing a three-year contract with Avangard Omsk.

Dinamo Minsk and Spartak Moscow

After four seasons with Avangard Omsk, Emelin left as a free agent and extended his career in the KHL after signing a one-year contract with Belarusian club, HC Dinamo Minsk, on 26 July 2022. Selected as team captain for Dinamo Minsk in the lead up to the 2022–23 season, Emelin as a regular on the blueline made 38 appearances and registered 9 assists.

On 19 December 2022, Emelin left Dinamo and transferred to HC Spartak Moscow for the remainder of the season.

Career statistics

Regular season and playoffs

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2002–03 Lada–2 Togliatti RUS.3 31 1 1 2 20
2003–04 Lada–2 Togliatti RUS.3 2 0 0 0 10
2003–04 CSK VVS Samara RUS.2 53 2 4 6 198 1 0 0 0 18
2004–05 Lada Togliatti RSL 12 0 1 1 24 2 0 0 0 2
2004–05 Lada–2 Togliatti RUS.3 11 3 2 5 14
2005–06 Lada Togliatti RSL 44 6 6 12 131 6 0 1 1 47
2006–07 Lada Togliatti RSL 43 2 5 7 74 3 0 0 0 4
2007–08 Ak Bars Kazan RSL 56 0 5 5 123 10 0 1 1 10
2008–09 Ak Bars Kazan KHL 51 0 3 3 58 7 1 0 1 10
2009–10 Ak Bars Kazan KHL 46 1 6 7 50 22 5 8 13 24
2010–11 Ak Bars Kazan KHL 52 11 15 26 117 9 0 0 0 4
2011–12 Montreal Canadiens NHL 67 3 4 7 30
2012–13 Ak Bars Kazan KHL 24 2 7 9 40
2012–13 Montreal Canadiens NHL 38 3 9 12 33
2013–14 Montreal Canadiens NHL 59 3 14 17 59 15 0 2 2 4
2014–15 Montreal Canadiens NHL 68 3 11 14 59 12 0 2 2 10
2015–16 Montreal Canadiens NHL 72 0 12 12 71
2016–17 Montreal Canadiens NHL 76 2 8 10 71 2 1 0 1 2
2017–18 Nashville Predators NHL 76 1 8 9 40 10 0 0 0 0
2018–19 Avangard Omsk KHL 48 5 14 19 20 19 1 4 5 20
2019–20 Avangard Omsk KHL 16 0 1 1 51 6 2 1 3 6
2020–21 Avangard Omsk KHL 59 6 15 21 73 12 1 2 3 4
2021–22 Avangard Omsk KHL 43 2 6 8 35 13 2 3 5 6
2022–23 Dinamo Minsk KHL 38 0 9 9 22
2022–23 Spartak Moscow KHL 21 0 3 3 6
RSL totals 155 8 17 25 352 21 0 2 2 63
KHL totals 398 27 80 107 447 88 12 18 30 74
NHL totals 456 15 66 81 363 39 1 4 5 16

International

Medal record
Representing Flag of Russia.svg Russia
World Championships
Gold 2012 Finland/Sweden
Silver 2010 Germany
Bronze 2007 Russia
Bronze 2016 Russia
World Junior Championships
Silver 2005 United States
Silver 2006 Canada
World U18 Championships
Gold 2004 Belarus
Year Team Event Result   GP G A Pts PIM
2004 Russia WJC18 1 6 0 0 0 10
2005 Russia WJC 2 6 1 0 1 8
2006 Russia WJC 2 6 2 5 7 39
2007 Russia WC 3 9 1 2 3 6
2010 Russia WC 2 9 1 1 2 33
2011 Russia WC 4th 9 0 0 0 29
2012 Russia WC 1 9 2 2 4 4
2014 Russia OG 5th 5 0 0 0 8
2016 Russia WC 3 10 0 1 1 25
2016 Russia WCH 4th 4 0 1 1 0
Junior totals 18 3 5 8 57
Senior totals 44 4 7 11 105

Awards and honors

Award Year
KHL
Gagarin Cup (Ak Bars Kazan) 2009, 2010
All-Star Game 2013
Gagarin Cup (Avangard Omsk) 2021
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