Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Two Way Street

NHLers leaving for Russia

And guess what, the NHL doesn't seem to like it.

But here's the real upshot of the whole thing:

Zherdev is the only first-line player among them. The others find themselves squeezed in the NHL's salary cap system where most of the money goes to the marquee names.
In other words, the marginal players are being squeezed out of the NHL and Russia is overpaying for that talent.

Of course, if the Rooskies can outbid the NHL for talent, then their claims of wanting $2 million for a player like Malkin begin to ring more and more hollow.

Though the Canadian Press should do a little more homework, agent Mark Gandler was also named in the Caps lawsuit against Alexander Semin last year. The Caps alleged that Gandler assisted Semin in his breaching of his contract with the Caps and that Gandler had numerous contacts in the Russian Super League which allowed him to aide and abet Semin. I don't think it is a coincidence that his clients are heading back to Russia during this dispute.

As I pointed out a couple of weeks ago there are some Russian players who have been downright busts. The Russian players who know that they are good hockey players, like A.O., will want to play against the best to prove themselves. The others, well, they'll go where the $$$$$ is. What exactly is wrong with this, I don't know.

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