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|He's got name, but game?: Tikhonov is eager to prove he belongs
19 июля 2015 года. Hine, Chris. Chicago Tribune
One of the new Blackhawks has a name that is familiar to hockey fans around the world -- Viktor Tikhonov.
You might remember the late Viktor Tikhonov as the longtime Soviet Union and Russian national team coach, including during the U.S. Miracle on Ice of the 1980 Olympics.
His grandson, Viktor, 27, is bringing that name and reputation to the Hawks next season as he looks to revive his career after four seasons in the KHL.
"There are pluses and minuses," Tikhonov said of his hockey lineage, which includes his father Vasili, who was a coach in Russia and assistant with the Sharks. "There's always the pressure of living up to the expectations. ... The pressure is high with that."
The winger has some other pressure on his shoulders this season as he tries to find a niche on a Hawks team that is in flux for next season.
Tikhonov was a first-round NHL draft pick of the Coyotes in 2008 and played 61 games his first season before bouncing around the AHL. Frustrated by his career arc, Tikhonov, who grew up in San Jose, Calif., moved to Russia in 2011 and was able to spend time with his grandfather before his passing in 2014.
"You hear all these stories that he was kind of like a dictator and I'm sure he was and it was really hard to play under him, but I never got to see any of that," Tikhonov said at the Blackhawks Convention.
"When I came, he was pretty much done coaching and the only experience I had with him was at home. He was a super, loving and caring grandpa.
"It's like two different people, but he's a really good person and I'm really lucky I had a grandpa like him."
Tikhonov played for SKA St. Petersburg, where he was a teammate of Artemi Panarin, whom the Hawks signed to a two-year deal. From a playing-time standpoint, Tikhonov might have benefited from joining a team that is not as talent-laden as the Hawks, but that concern took a back seat to the interest the Hawks showed in him the last few seasons. He says that really helped him make his decision.
"Pretty much come free agency, it was an immediate offer (from the Hawks)," he said, "and I'm like, 'All right they must see something.' "
What they saw was a steady, solid player who could provide depth next season.
"He's a very responsible two-way player," general manager Stan Bowman said. "He scores a lot of points but he does a lot of the dirty work as well."
Tikhonov hopes that's enough to stick around for a while.
"I have grown a lot as a player," Tikhonov said. "I'm a little stronger, a little faster and I think this time around it's going to be better."