Zibanejad in 2013.
18 April 1993 |
|Height||6 ft 1 in (185 cm)|
|Weight||200 lb (91 kg; 14 st 4 lb)|
|NHL Draft||6th overall, 2011
Mika Zibanejad (born 18 April 1993) is a Swedish professional ice hockey centreman currently playing for the Ottawa Senators of the National Hockey League (NHL). Zibanejad was selected sixth overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft by the Senators and signed a professional contract with Ottawa in July 2011. He made the Senators lineup out of training camp to start the 2011–12 season, but was returned to Djurgårdens IF in Sweden after scoring one point in nine NHL games with Ottawa.
Internationally, Zibanejad has represented Sweden at both the under-18 and junior levels. On January 5, 2012, Zibanejad scored the gold medal-winning golden goal for Sweden in the 2012 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships against Russia in the tournament final; the game finished 1–0.
Zibanejad played soccer as a child before deciding to pursue hockey. He began playing hockey at the age of six in Hammarby IF, where he played a total of seven seasons before the club went bankrupt in 2008.
Zibanejad then moved to AIK IF's youth organization for the following season, where he began playing junior hockey. He was acquired by Djurgårdens IF for the 2009–10 season to play in Djurgården's J18-team and J20-team. Zibanejad made his Elitserien debut on December 7, 2010, against Luleå HF, and scored his first Elitserien goal on January 15, 2011, against Tuomas Tarkki of Modo Hockey. He was drafted in the sixth round of the 2010 KHL Junior Draft by Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, 129th overall. On February 7, 2011, Zibanejad signed a two-year contract extension with Djurgården. Zibanejad became a regular player in the senior roster after his debut, playing in 26 of the remaining 29 games. He scored five goals and nine points, which put him third in points for players 18 or younger playing with the senior team, behind Fredrik Bremberg and Jacob Josefson. On January 5, 2012, Zibanejad scored the game-winning goal for Sweden at the 2012 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships in overtime of the gold medal game against Russia.
On July 13, 2011, Zibanejad signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Ottawa Senators, the team that drafted him sixth overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. After an impressive training camp, Zibanejad joined the Senators for their first game of the 2011–12 season. He registered his first career NHL point in his first game, an assist on a goal by Filip Kuba in a 5–3 loss to the Detroit Red Wings. After just one point in nine games played, Zibanejad was reassigned to his most recent club, Djurgårdens IF, on October 26.
In June 2012, Zibanejad was rumoured to be a key part of a package Ottawa was offering to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for disgruntled superstar Rick Nash. The offer was allegedly taken off the table when Columbus General Manager Scott Howson informed the Senators that Nash was unwilling to waive his no-trade clause to accept a trade to Ottawa.
In August 2012, the Senators announced that Zibanejad will spend the 2012–13 season in North America, either in the NHL with the Senators or with the club's American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Binghamton Senators.Due to the NHL lockout, Zibanejad started the season with Binghamton, where he registered 11 points in 23 games while battling injuries. He was called up to Ottawa on January 28, 2013, and played in his first NHL game of the season on January 29 against the Washington Capitals, a game in which he was selected as the First Star. The following night, on January 30 in a game against the Montreal Canadiens, Zibanejad scored his first career NHL goal. The goal came on the power play against goaltender Peter Budaj and with assists from Colin Greening and André Benoit. 
Zibanejad was raised in Huddinge, Sweden. Zibanejad's father is from Iran and his mother is from Finland. His half-brother, Monir Kalgoum, is also an ice hockey player, who previously played for Milton Keynes Lightning but is currently with the Swedish Division 2 team Botkyrka HC.
|Competitor for Sweden|
|World Junior Championships|
|IIHF World U18 Championships|
|World U-17 Hockey Challenge|
Regular season and playoffs
- Ten questions ... with Sens prospect Mika Zibanejad http://senators.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=641368
- Bodin, Uffe (26 January 2011). "Här är vårt nästa drafthopp". hockeysverige.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 22 February 2011.
- Gustavsson, Sven (7 December 2010). "Djurgårdens juniorer bjöd på show". Dagens Nyheter (in Swedish). Retrieved 11 December 2010.
- Lundin, Anders (15 January 2011). "Djurgården skrämde övertidsspöket". Dagens Nyheter (in Swedish). TT. Retrieved 15 January 2011.
- Robert, Pettersson. "Svenskarna som gick i KHL-draften". hockeysverige.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 10 December 2010.
- "Mika Zibanejad klar för två år till i DIF". difhockey.se (in Swedish). Djurgårdens IF Hockey. Retrieved 7 February 2011.
- "Mika Zibanejad". difhockey.se (in Swedish). Djurgårdens IF Hockey. Retrieved 8 March 2011.
- "Senators sign top draft pick". Toronto Sun. 13 July 2011. Retrieved 1 January 2011.
- Hedger, Brian (5 October 2011). "Wings hold off Senators 5-3 in opener". nhl.com. National Hockey League.
- "Senators send rookie Zibanejad back to Sweden". The Sports Network. 26 October 2011. Retrieved 26 October 2011.
- NHL Rumors: Now the Senators are making a pitch for Rick Nash http://www.cbssports.com/nhl/blog/eye-on-hockey/19385210/nhl-rumors-now-the-senators-are-making-a-pitch-for-rick-nash
- Senators: Zibanejad staying in North America http://www.nhl.com/ice/blogpost.htm?id=10964
- GONCHAR SCORES LATE WINNER AS SENATORS OVERCOME CAPITALS http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=414781
- ZIBANEJAD SCORES FIRST NHL GOAL AS SENATORS BEAT CANADIENS http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=414860
- "Mika Zibanejad". nhl.com. NHL. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
- Holm, Stefan (26 February 2011). "(K)ungen av Globen". Aftonbladet (in Swedish). Retrieved 5 March 2011.
- "Monir Kalgoum". eliteprospects.com. Retrieved 8 March 2011.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mika Zibanejad.|
- Official Website of Mika Zibanejad
- Mika Zibanejad's career statistics at The Internet Hockey Database
- Mika Zibanejad's career statistics at EliteProspects.com
- Mika Zibanejad profile at Eurohockey.com
|Ottawa Senators first round draft pick