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Khabibulin impaired driving trial delayed once again

Jul 21, 2010, 7:30 PM EST

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khabibulindui.jpgThe trial for Edmonton Oilers goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin in his impaired driving case has been delayed once again. Sarah McClellan of the Edmonton Journal shares the news.

Edmonton Oilers goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin arrived in an Arizona court Wednesday for the second time this month to appear before a jury on charges of impaired driving and speeding, but his case was once again postponed.

“The calendar’s congested,” said Khabibulin’s attorney Mark DuBiel as he exited a Scottsdale Municipal courtroom with Khabibulin.

Judge B. Monte Morgan offered DuBiel two options: a court date at the end of August without a jury in which Morgan would act as the judge and jury, or a date at the end of September with a jury trial.

“We don’t know which one we’re gonna take yet because we have to talk to the hockey club first,” DuBiel said.

Morgan also suggested an interim judge take the case, but DuBiel said that was a route the prosecutor would not like to take.

Khabibulin is going to have to face the music on this charge eventually and it’s one that looks pretty ugly considering the seemingly tame-ish nature of the charge. Khabibulin was cited for an extreme DUI and took a blood test to check the alcohol content in his system. The results came up as being more than twice the legal limit. Not good. With the trial now being delayed until September, Khabibulin’s participation in Oilers training camp will now face a major distraction.
Given that Khabibulin’s contract with the Oilers is rather interminably long for the 37 year-old (he’s got three years left at $3.375 million per), we took a look at what the Oilers could do a couple weeks ago should Khabibulin face jail time and found that the Oilers could void his contract if things got that far. Whether the Oilers would do that and battle with the NHLPA would remain to be seen.

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