Here’s what ex-Devils sniper Ilya Kovalchuk told R-Sport about the relationship between Avs goalie Semyon Varlamov and his girlfriend, who’s accusations of domestic violence led to third-degree assault charges last month:
“I hope to God it all pans out well and maybe he can somehow reach an agreement with his princess and finally she’d be given a green card, which she really wants,” Kovalchuk said.
The Colorado Avalanche netminder, 25, is widely expected to feature on the Russian roster for February’s Olympics in Sochi alongside Kovalchuk, who left the New Jersey Devils in the summer to return to Russia with SKA St. Petersburg.
Russia’s hockey stars “are all supporting” Varlamov, Kovalchuk said.
Varlamov, widely projected to be Russia’s No. 1 netminder in Sochi, will have the opportunity to enter a plea when he reappears in court on Jan. 22 — roughly two weeks before the Olympics begin.
For now, Varlamov remains free on bond and can travel with the Avalanche. So far the 25-year-old hasn’t allowed his legal situation to become a distraction, registering a .924 save percentage in November.
The maximum sentence for third-degree assault (a Class One Misdemeanor) is two years in county jail. According to Denver Post reporter Ryan Parker, Varlamov could also face deportation if convicted.
Varlamov was originally arrested for second-degree kidnapping and third-degree assault. The more serious kidnapping charge (a Class 4 Felony) was dropped as the DA didn’t feel it couldn’t be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
Click here to read the arrest warrant.
The Buffalo Sabres have recalled forward Justin Bailey from AHL Rochester.
It’s the first time Bailey, a second-round pick in 2013, has ever been called up to the NHL. The 20-year-old joins the big club after piling up 11 points (5G, 6A) in his last eight games for the Americans.
Most Sabres fans will know that Bailey is from Buffalo (technically, Williamsville), the son of former Bills linebacker Carlton Bailey. (To learn more, click on this Buffalo News story from July.)
The Sabres play Thursday in Philadelphia, where Bailey will reportedly make his NHL debut.
To make room for Bailey on Buffalo’s roster, Zemgus Girgensons (lower body) was placed on injured reserve.
Thing have gone from bad to weird in Minnesota, where embattled Wild coach Mike Yeo was “disappointed” to see Zenon Konopka’s rabbit holding a sign that read, “YEO MUST GO.”
Hey, we told you things had gotten weird.
Konopka, a former Wild player, took to Twitter last night after Minnesota’s latest loss.
Here’s what Konopka tweeted:
And what did Yeo think about that?
“I really don’t care what he says,” he told the Star Tribune, apparently adding with a laugh, “I will say I was very disappointed to see Hoppy holding that sign.”
Now, according to the newspaper’s Michael Russo, “Konopka and Yeo had a lot of issues behind the scenes and that’s why [Konopka] ended up on waivers two Januarys ago.”
Still, that doesn’t change the fact that a lot of Wild fans agree with Hoppy, er, Konopka, and it doesn’t change the fact that the Wild could really, really use a win tomorrow at home to Washington.
Nice work from Artem Anisimov and Matt Niskanen this week, but Connor McDavid‘s tally is on a different level.
You can pretty much bank on McDavid being in Goals of the Year, too. Just saying.
Laurent Brossoit is getting another crack at the NHL.
On Wednesday, the Oilers announced they demoted Anders Nilsson — who, earlier this year, was carrying the starting gig in Edmonton — and recalled Brossoit from AHL Bakersfield.
Brossoit, 22, is an interesting story. Taken in the sixth round of the 2011 draft (164th overall), he’s really made strides over the last year. He made his big-league debut at the end of last season and performed extremely well, making 49 saves on 51 shots in a loss to San Jose.
This year, Brossoit was named an AHL All-Star. He’s posted a 14-8-3 record for the Condors thus far, with a 2.70 GAA and .921 save percentage.
As for Nilsson, his demotion comes after losing the starting gig to Cam Talbot. Nilsson has also struggled to find the good form shown in November, when he made 10 starts and posted a .915 save percentage.
In his last outing, the lanky Swede allowed three goals on 10 shots in an embarrassing 8-1 loss to the Isles.