Russian Super League - Kiril Safronov (Nashville Predators) has signed a contract with Super League club SKA (St. Petersburg). The 2004-05 season was Safronov’s first after he returned from many years in North America. The young defenseman was originally drafted by the Phoenix Coyotes in 1999, but was then traded to the Atlanta Thrasher with Ruslan Zainullin and a 4th round pick in the 2002 Entry Draft for Darcy Hordichuk and a 4th and 5th round picks in the 2002 Entry Draft. After being unable to stick in Atlanta’s lineup, the NHL club traded him to Nashville with Simon Gamache for Ben Simon and Tomas Kloucek in December of 2003. 2004-05 Season Overview: Safronov started the 2004-05 season with Lokomotiv (Yaroslavl), but was released by the club during the November transfer period and then went on to join Khimik (Vosskresensk), where he enjoyed significantly more success on the club’s first defensive pairing.
Kiril Safronov signed a deal with Russian Super League (Russia 1) club Ak bars (Kazan) for the 2004-05 season. Safronov's contract with the Atlanta Thrashers expired at the end of the 2003-04 season. After a long NHL stint during the 2002-03 season, the young defenseman and former first round pick struggled for most of the 2003-04 season, unable break back into the NHL. Barring some surprising turnaround, this was likely Safronov's last season in North America.