If there’s any truth to the rumor that Pavel Datsyuk will play out his contract with the Red Wings then go back to Russia for good, Detroit general manager Ken Holland will try to find out at the end of the season.
“Obviously, I’ve heard the rumors,” Holland told NHL.com. “I have not had any real conversation with [Datsyuk] or his agent, Gary Greenstein. Gary lives in California and I just saw him the other day. Basically we’re going to sit down at the conclusion of this season, before Pav goes home. I don’t know what will come out of it.”
Datysuk is signed through next season, after which he can become an unrestricted free agent.
Clearly, the 34-year-old enjoyed playing in Russia during the lockout. When the work stoppage ended in January, he professed his desire to stay in the KHL until the end of the season.
Datsyuk has already won two Stanley Cups and made a pile of money in the NHL. And if he chose to play out his career in the KHL, there’s plenty more money to be made over there.
But that’s getting ahead of things.
“We’ll talk before he goes home sometime in June, but anything beyond that is speculation and rumors,” Holland said. “Nobody’s told me anything. They haven’t told me they’re staying or going. I haven’t asked either. We hope he wants to stay, but I’m certainly aware there’s a professional league in Russia and they pay their players well. Beyond that, I don’t know.”