Tag: Vyacheslav Fetisov

Russian Five - Detroit Red Wings

Four of Detroit’s “Russian Five” to participate in Winter Classic alumni game festivities


The Red Wings of the mid-to-late 90s were always known for their array of Russian superstar players. If you don’t recall the “Russian Five” of Sergei Fedorov, Igor Larionov, Vyacheslav Fetisov, Slava Kozlov, and Vladimir Konstantinov you missed out some of the most skillful hockey the NHL saw at the time.

The good news for you is that you’ll get to see them one more time. Four out of those five will be participating in the 2013 Winter Classic alumni game on December 31. The lone member of the Russian quintet not yet appearing is Kozlov who is still playing professionally in the KHL after leaving the NHL after the 2009-10 season.

Konstantinov, who was paralyzed in a car accident following the Red Wings’ 1997 Stanley Cup championship, is expected to be an ambassador for the game and won’t be playing. As for Fedorov, Larionov, and Fetisov — expect to see them suiting up against the Maple Leafs alumni.

With Scotty Bowman set to coach the Red Wings alumni, maybe we’ll get to relive the old days and see Bowman have Fedorov play defense as well as forward all over again.

If you didn’t get to experience what the “Russian Five” was like during their time in Motor City, the Red Wings put this video together to remind everyone how great they were.

Vladimir Krutov passes away at age 52

Vladimir Krutov - Getty Images

Russian hockey lost a legend today. Vladimir Krutov passed away at age 52 due to a stomach hemorrhage this morning.

While Krutov never really staked his claim in North America in the NHL,his legacy internationally is well known.

Krutov won two Olympic gold medals and five World Championships with the Soviet Union as a member on the legendary “KLM line.” While teamed up with Igor Larionov and Sergei Makarov, Krutov dominated international play with 164 points in 123 games. Those three players would combine with Vyacheslav Fetisov and Alexei Kasatonov to make up one of the most dynamic five-man lineups in hockey called “The Green Unit.”

Krutov played one season with the Vancouver Canucks in 1989-1990 scoring 11 goals and adding 23 assists teaming up with Larionov. While Larionov stuck with Vancouver and ultimately won Stanley Cups with Detroit, Krutov headed back to Russia the following year. Krutov was inducted to the IIHF Hall of Fame in 2010.