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Russian Team Denies Reports Of Revelry

From The Buffalo News:

They were thrown off a flight because of unruly behavior, can be seen on a video celebrating with what for all the world appears to be beer bottles in their hands, and several witnesses reported that their behavior had all the earmarks of intoxication.

But as members of the gold medal-winning Russian junior hockey team continued to cool their heels — and maybe treat their headaches? — no one associated with the under-20 players Thursday would acknowledge that there might have been a bit too much celebrating after their thrilling come-from-behind victory the night before over Canada in HSBC Arena.

“I don’t speak English,” one player said Thursday afternoon.

“False,” the team’s media officer said.

“I don’t know what happened,” their coach said.

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Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: adam's+mark, days+inn+hotel+buffalo+airport, mikhail+zislis, russian+gold+medal, valeri+bragin, world+juniors

Comments

lordhogie's avatar

I get that this is a major international event and it brings “a lot” of exposure to the game, but does anyone else feel like this is getting way overblown.

It just reeks, the same way it reeked when the international media walked all over the Canadian Women’s national team after they let some of their underage players have a beer after they won Olympic gold.

I am sure there have been players that have won the Stanley cup that are not 21. Maybe the NHL shoudl stop the bubbly in the locker room? Please…move on…there are better things to cover in the hockey world.

Posted by lordhogie from Calgary on 01/07/11 at 12:36 PM ET

Avatar

“...but does anyone else feel like this is getting way overblown?”

Uh, yeah. This article has pretty much an hour-by-hour recount of their night, following them on buses, to Tim Horton’s, with eye-witness testimony. We get it, 20 teenagers from another continent got rowdy-drunk after beating our country’s team in the gold medal game.

This quote:
Dan O’Brien, athletics operations manager at Niagara University, said the image of the team he was hearing about Thursday did not jibe with the young men he met in the last two weeks. He said the players respected the facilities and staff at NU last week during the preliminary rounds at Dwyer Arena in Lewiston.”

They were great,” O’Brien said. “They cleaned up after themselves and were very respectful. Actually, I’m a little surprised. By the way they acted around us, you wouldn’t think they would do something like they did.”

Yes, it’s unimaginable that these 20 kids acted respectfully throughout the tournament as they tried to win games, and get to the gold medal. Then when they won, they celebrated - pretty much the same way almost everyone around the world celebrates - with an intoxicant.

Yes, it’s incredibly hard to believe that someone can be so nice, so respectful and mindful of others’ space, then go straight evil by drinking alcohol and partying for eight hours after a monumental win while doing what they are most passionate about.

Posted by NathanBC on 01/07/11 at 02:25 PM ET

Avatar

Of course they were sh**-faced, they’re under 20, they’re hockey players, and they’re RUSSIAN! Oh, and if the players or coaches don’t admit to it, it never happened. At least that’s how it was during my playing days.

Posted by Jesters Dead on 01/07/11 at 03:56 PM ET

Hippy Dave's avatar

Aww heck, let the kids have a few pops.

Posted by Hippy Dave from Portland by way of Detroit on 01/07/11 at 05:36 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Maybe the media should grow the fuch up…

Posted by SYF from the team that re-signed KFQ and DFC by KFH on 01/07/11 at 05:49 PM ET

Avatar

It just reeks, the same way it reeked when the international media walked all over the Canadian Women’s national team after they let some of their underage players have a beer after they won Olympic gold.

I don’t know; some people were actually angry about the women’s team for reasons I do not pretend to understand.

This story isn’t outraging anyone, I expect; it’s just kind of funny. Russia, the country with far and away the #1 consumption of ethyl alcohol per person, unexpectedly wins a big event on the national stage. Of course there’s always celebration after a big win like this, but Team Russia’s celebration is so thorough they are kicked off the plane, which hasn’t happened before with a WJC champion. as far as I know. When questioned about it, the team insinuates it is a conspiracy, like out of some spy novel or something. It’s just stereotype (earned or not; there’s an interview with Evgeni Kuznetsov floating around where he says the only thing any GM outside the Capitals organization asked him before last year’s draft was how much Vodka he drinks per day) after stereotype coming true.

Posted by StevieSteve on 01/07/11 at 05:51 PM 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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