The Malik Report
by George Malik on 04/04/11 at 05:13 PM ET
Last week, Yahoo Sports’ Dmitry Chesnokov reported that estranged New York Islanders goaltender Evegeni Nabokov’s agent and/or the Russian Hockey Federation hadn’t managed to secure permission from the Islanders to allow Nabokov to play in a few World Championship warm-up games prior to the conclusion of the Islanders’ season on April 9th, and TSN’s Darren Dreger suggests in his Dreger Report that the Islanders don’t plan on allowing Nabokov to participate in the Worlds, period:
The New York Islanders have no intention of granting Evgeni Nabokov permission to play for Russia in the upcoming World Hockey Championship and according to the NHL, Nabokov needs the Isles’ permission even though their season is about to end.
Nabokov remains under suspension after failing to report to New York in January when the Islanders claimed the 35-year-old goalie off waivers. The Islanders still control Nabokov’s rights and see considerable value in the one-year, $570,000 contract he initially signed with the Detroit Red Wings.
Because Nabokov refused to report to Long Islande and was subesquently suspended, both the team and league believe the Isles can toll his contract for the 2011-2012 season. This tolling potential is the reason why the Islanders denied the Russian Federation’s request to allow Nabokov to play in an exhibition game last week with their Russian national team and the impact his playing in the Worlds may also have on dragging Nabokov’s rights to next season presents a gamble that the Islanders, at this point, aren’t willing to take.
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