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KHL announces returning Russian NHL players won’t count against salary cap

May 13, 2012, 6:01 PM EST

WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 2: Alexander Semin #28 of Washington Capitals skates during warmups before Game Three of the Eastern Conference Semifinals of the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs against the New York Rangers on May 2, 2012 at the Verizon Center in Washington, DC. (Photo by Mitchell Layton/NHLI via Getty Images) Getty Images

Despite a rough season that rocked the league, the KHL still seems primed to try to wrestle away top players from the NHL. Slava Malamud reports that the KHL announced that “returning Russian NHL players” won’t count against the league’s salary cap.

Malamud reveals that KHL teams will only be allowed to sign one player according to that new standard, but it opens the door for deeper-pocketed clubs to shoot for a big name. Strangely, national team coaches would need to deem a player “worthy” of being excluded from salary cap consideration first, though.

The most obvious names that stand out are soon-to-be free agent wingers Alexander Semin (unrestricted, Washington Capitals) and Alex Radulov (restricted, Nashville Predators). Both boast boatloads of talent and some baggage with their NHL clubs. The lure of big bucks and perhaps more positive media scrutiny might beat whatever a prospective NHL team would offer, but we’ll have to wait and see.

  1. capsfan1974 - May 13, 2012 at 6:17 PM

    I say good riddence…alot of the Russian players aren’t worth the time, trouble or money.

    • taytay099 - May 13, 2012 at 11:24 PM

      The same can be said about players from any country. I don’t understand the hate for Russian players.

  2. smushrodriguez - May 13, 2012 at 6:32 PM

    Take Bryz!!!

  3. atwatercrushesokoye - May 13, 2012 at 7:39 PM

    With a possible lockout coming, as well as the Olympics in Russia in 2014 and the NHL and IIHF yet to come to an agreement for pros to play in that Olympics I wouldn’t be surprised to see more than a few Russian players return home this year. And if the NHL ultimately decides not to go to Sochi I wouldn’t be surprised to see a lot of bigger name players leave after next season.

  4. stakex - May 13, 2012 at 9:30 PM

    It really wouldn’t shock me to see Semin head to Russia.

    Not only does he seem very uninterested in playing sometimes, there is no way hes going to get a big contract next season in the NHL. With (21g, 33a for 54p) during the regular season, and (3g, 1a for 4p and a +/- -4) in the 14 playoff games including just 1 assist in the entire Rangers series hes not worth anywhere close to the $7.5 million he made this year. If he finds a team in the NHL willing to pay him $4-5 million, he should consider himself lucky.

    In Russia on the other hand? He could probably get a huge pay day, perhaps even more then $10 million a year. While hes not worth close to that in the NHL, a KHL team with deep pockets could lay out that kind of cash to bring him in since it wouldn’t hurt their cap numbers…. and he would certainly be one of the best player in the KHL.

    I don’t think there is any question that Semin will be presented with this option. Its just a matter of whats in his heart…. if he even has one.

    • babykaby - May 14, 2012 at 4:28 AM

      I think you show your stupidity with nearly every post you make. You read all the bull that the so called media writes and buy it lock, stock and barrell. You must love Fox news. How’s that swamp land you bought?

      • govtminion - May 14, 2012 at 11:55 AM

        Wow.

        So, what part of his post exactly did you disagree with? It sounds pretty logical to me- Semin has a choice to make, and it’s between getting paid bank in Russia or modestly here. Where’s the problem?

  5. selldannysell - May 14, 2012 at 8:02 AM

    Take Semin, PLEASE!

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