Alex Ovechkin‘s old hockey club in Russia is kind of a mess right now.
The KHL’s Dynamo Moscow, despite getting new owners that will allow the team to play next season, is now facing the prospect of a players’ strike over unpaid wages.
According to Russian sports writer Slava Malamud, Dynamo’s new owners are saying they’re not responsible for the old owners’ mistakes. Hence, the decision to not pay the players what they’re owed.
The players, meanwhile, say they’re on strike until that changes.
It’s been a tumultuous few weeks for the club. Earlier this month, Dyanmo’s offices were raided by anti-fraud and corruption police.
From the Associated Press:
According to the club, the raid was prompted by an allegation of embezzlement by an employee of the club’s training base, made in a letter by a senior executive of the Dynamo sports society. The society owns the club and has been in dispute with its management.
The club said it was co-operating with police, but suggested the corruption complaint was being used as “a means of putting pressure” on the club.
Dynamo was until recently one of Russia’s top hockey teams with backing from billionaire former club president Arkady Rotenberg, and won the Kontinental Hockey League in 2012 and 2013.
Since Rotenberg left in 2015, the club has experienced cash shortages, and relations with the Dynamo sports society’s leadership have become tense.
Last month, society head Vladimir Strzhalkovsky told Russian media the club racked up debts of around 2 billion rubles $35 million US.
Dynamo was eliminated by SKA Saint Petersburg in the second round of this year’s Gagarin Cup playoffs.