Skip to content

Zetterberg on players returning post-lockout: “I know for a fact Russians will probably stay”

Oct 10, 2012, 2:15 PM EST

Henrik Zetterberg Getty Images

Though he’s currently signed with Switzerland’s EV Zug, Henrik Zetterberg knows he’ll be returning to Detroit once the NHL lockout is over.

He just isn’t sure if Russian players will follow suit.

That’s what Detroit’s alternate captain told MLive.com on Wednesday, explaining how the KHL has become a legitimate option for a number of Russian players.

“I know for a fact Russians will probably stay,” Zetterberg said. “I can’t blame them either. The Russian league treats players a different way. For them to play in their home country and not have these (labor) disputes every other year … and they honor the contracts over there.

“If you sign a deal, that’s the deal you get.”

For Red Wings fans, the immediate concern is probably the future of Pavel Datsyuk, the 34-year-old Russian superstar currently plying his trade for CSKA Moscow.

Well, breathe easy Detroit supporters — according his agent, Gary Greenstin, Datsyuk will return to the Motor City once the lockout ends.

But while Datsyuk is a lock to return, other Russian NHLers don’t sound as committed.

– Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov has already spouted off about the potential of some Russian players remaining in the KHL after the work stoppage ends.

Alex Ovechkin said he’d stay in the KHL if the NHL cut salaries.

Ilya Kovalchuk said he’d be “delighted” to play in the KHL all season. “I really don’t care, the main thing for me is hockey,” he told RIA Novosti.

Zetterberg said if the NHL doesn’t get some players back post-lockout, it only has itself to blame.

“It’s not our decision whether to play games,” he explained.” We were willing to play under the old CBA while they figured out the new one, but the league didn’t want to do that.

“If they don’t want to have us here playing, we just got to look for some other places to play.”

Latest Posts
  1. Goalie nods: Corey Crawford returns

    Dec 20, 2014, 3:27 PM EST

    Corey Crawford Getty Images

    Saturday’s slew of starting goalies.

  2. Sickness and uncertainty prompt Pens to recall Pouliot, Chorney (Update)

    Dec 20, 2014, 1:22 PM EST

    pouliot2 Getty Images

    Good luck trying to forecast their lines for Saturday.

  3. Disgruntled Oilers fans take out ad calling for Kevin Lowe’s firing

    Dec 20, 2014, 9:00 AM EST

    Owners And Players Meet To Discuss NHL Lockout Getty Images

    As it turns out, the hockey exec’s name rhymes nicely with “must go.”

  4. Red Wings lose fifth in a row, recall McCollum

    Dec 20, 2014, 12:09 AM EST

    New York Islanders v Detroit Red Wings Getty Images

    They label Jimmy Howard as day-to-day.

  5. Julien chides Bruins’ offense for too many cute plays

    Dec 19, 2014, 11:32 PM EST

    Michael Hutchinson, Milan Lucic AP

    They fell to Winnipeg 2-1 on Friday.

  6. Sens roll over Ducks, who ‘weren’t ready’

    Dec 19, 2014, 10:31 PM EST

    ryanzibanejad Getty Images

    Then again, maybe the Ryan – Zibanejad – Hoffman line was just that good.

  7. Video: Elias shines as Devils end five-game skid

    Dec 19, 2014, 10:01 PM EST

    Detroit Red Wings v New Jersey Devils Getty Images

    A beauty in regulation and in the shootout.

  8. Habs rotate backups by recalling MacDonald, demoting Tokarski

    Dec 19, 2014, 9:51 PM EST

    Dusitn Tokarski AP

    Sven Andrighetto is back up while Eric Tangradi heads to the AHL.

  9. Howard leaves Red Wings game with lower-body injury

    Dec 19, 2014, 8:48 PM EST

    jimmyhoward Getty Images

    They’re playing safe for “precautionary” reasons.

  10. Bryzgalov gets first Ducks start since 2007

    Dec 19, 2014, 7:43 PM EST

    Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Anaheim Ducks 6-2 Getty Images

    It’s been 2,599 days since that last happened.

  11. Stomach flu makes Lightning’s Johnson a surprise scratch

    Dec 19, 2014, 6:47 PM EST

    Carolina Hurricanes v Tampa Bay Lightning Getty Images

    Let’s hope it’s just that type of illness …

Featured video

More than a Stanley Cup hangover?
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. S. Crosby (4108)
  2. B. Bishop (3344)
  3. D. Krejci (2558)
  4. C. Crawford (2525)
  5. C. Kunitz (2364)
  1. C. Perry (2145)
  2. O. Palat (2115)
  3. B. Elliott (2016)
  4. T. Oshie (1863)
  5. T. Hall (1617)