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KHL Or Not?

from the CP at CBC,

Most tend to believe it's an isolated incident, with two agents and one former agent and general manager singling out the once-in-a-generation circumstances that led to Kovalchuk leaving and the Devils permitting him to go without keeping his contract in place or preventing him from signing with a KHL team.

"I don't think it's an epidemic or anything like that," agent Mark Gandler said. "I think each person makes his decision based on the circumstances that he's in, based on his environment, his family, his upbringing."

When Kovalchuk decided to file his voluntary retirement papers, he all but blocked himself from returning to the NHL. Coming back would require him to sit out a year or get approval from all 30 teams.

"I think these are very unique circumstances," said agent J.P. Barry, who represents Malkin. "How many players would want to remove the NHL option from their future? Because by doing this voluntary retirement, they've essentially done that."

Malkin did not want to do that, and he had a choice to do so in the near future. The Pittsburgh star's current contract expired after the 2013-14 season, and Barry said there were multiple offers from KHL teams for Malkin's services.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

Paul's avatar

If you didn’t continue reading, an interesting quote from player agent Allan Walsh.

Six months after the lockout ended, Walsh blames commissioner Gary Bettman in part for paving the way for Kovalchuk’s departure.

“Everyone played: Datsyuk played, Malkin played — they all played in the KHL, and they all had a great experience,” Walsh said. “(KHL president Alexander) Medvedev knew those guys needed to have, each of them, an amazing experience, and they did. And it opened the door. So Gary, you shut down the NHL and now the NHL has lost a premier player, and how many more are they going to lose?”

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 07/12/13 at 08:06 PM ET

SK77's avatar

So Gary, you shut down the NHL and now the NHL has lost a premier player, and how many more are they going to lose?

Debatable whether or not the NHL lost a premier player. Even so, the NHL is way ahead in stealing players from Russia versus Russians opting to eventually return to the KHL after playing in the NHL.

Posted by SK77 on 07/12/13 at 08:12 PM ET

Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit's avatar

Apparently the NHL is not the only game in town. Hockey is a world class sport not confined to North America. It has been played for centuries in Europe, Scandinavia, and Russia/Asia. I think sooner or later players will opt to play closer to home. It just makes sence.


Lets Go Red Wings!!!!!

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 07/12/13 at 08:14 PM ET

Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit's avatar

Sence=sense.

Lets Go Red Wings!!!!!

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 07/12/13 at 08:16 PM ET

alukacs's avatar

Kate - sorry, but hockey has not been played for centuries in Europe, Scandinavia and Russia/Asia (or Canada). In fact, hockey was not introduced in the USSR until the early 1930’s.

Posted by alukacs on 07/12/13 at 11:47 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Kate - sorry, but hockey has not been played for centuries in Europe, Scandinavia and Russia/Asia (or Canada). In fact, hockey was not introduced in the USSR until the early 1930’s.

Posted by alukacs on 07/12/13 at 11:47 PM ET

Not true.

For one there are apparently records of a formal game being played in Russia between a named Russian team and some Englishmen before the turn of the 20th century.

IIRC Russia was also already playing Bandy in at least the late 1800’s, predating the Russian Revolution even.  And there are claims and reports of the game showing up before that in Russia, which would make sense considering the game was showing up in the rest of Europe in at least the 1700’s (there’s even a painting from the 1600’s that seems to depict ball hockey being played in the Netherlands).

Canada didn’t bring their version until the 1930’s but the fact is the game probably evolved out of a Native American game and was brought over, evolving at different paces and in different ways in different locales.  Though IIRC there’s a claim of similarity to an ancient game that was carried from Scandinavia, to Iceland and then to Canada, and that Vikings may have actually introduced ball-and-stick games to the Native Americans in the first place.

Let’s back off of the firm “Canada introduced everyone to hockey” claims though.

Posted by Primis on 07/13/13 at 01:54 AM ET

alukacs's avatar

Primis - Bandy is not hockey. Sure, people played games on ice for a long time, but that does not make it “hockey”. I never made the “Canada introduced everyone to hockey” claim, although they had a lot to do with the development of the current rules. Like forward passing…

Posted by alukacs on 07/14/13 at 12:01 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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