According to reports by Sport Express in Russia, Alexander Radulov and Salavat have reached an agreement to allow Radulov to play hockey in the NHL for the Nashville Predators. Salavat will keep his KHL rights, but that would only affect him and the Predators if he was to return to the KHL.
Read more after the jump for more information.
Here are the tweets from Slava Malamud…
Radulov and Salavat appear to have reached a deal allowing A-Rad to leave for Nashville now. Salavat to keep his KHL rights (Sport-Express)
— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) March 19, 2012
Sport-Express reports Radulov’s talks w/ KHL, Salavat are over. He’ll fly to Ufa tomorrow, most likely leave for Nashville later this week.
— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) March 19, 2012
Here is the Press Release from the Nashville Predators about David Poile’s comments on the situation.
In response to the recent speculation over the status of Nashville Predators European prospect Alexander Radulov, Preds General Manager David Poile issued the following statement on Monday:
“We have been in contact with Jay Grossman, Alexander’s agent, throughout this process of trying to return Alexander to the Predators and the NHL. Though the complicated process has yet to be concluded, every indication is that Alexander will be returning to Nashville in the near future. We do not anticipate having any further update on this process until tomorrow, at the earliest.”
Radulov, the 15th overall pick in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft, scored 44 goals and 95 points in 145 career regular season games with the Preds, adding five goals and eight points in 10 career playoff games, before leaving for the KHL four seasons ago. Radulov has posted 91 goals and 254 points in 210 career games in the KHL, winning the league MVP in both the 2009-10 season and 2010-11 season. This season he led the league in scoring with 63 points and is a leading contender to win his third consecutive league MVP award.
Alexander Radulov isn’t officially returning to the Nashville Predators, yet. A lot of people in Music City aren’t believing that Radulov will be returning to the Predators until they see him in a Gold uniform. I don’t blame them because there have been multiple misleading reports. I am one of those people, in a way. Honestly, I gave up on Alex Radulov returning to Nashville.
Here is a couple of quotes from Joshua Cooper, The Tennessean.
“It was the release that was holding him up,” Coach Barry Trotz said after the Predators beat the Ducks 3-1 here on Sunday. “That’s why he stayed the extra couple of days. He was planning to get on the plane Friday, from what I understand, and he couldn’t work out the release.”
“I’m sure tomorrow he will be getting on a plane and he will probably get to the U.S. Tuesday sometime.”
“Obviously he’s a great player and any time there’s a player like that you can add to the team you want to,” defenseman Ryan Suter said. “It should be a good thing if it’s true.”
Captain Shea Weber had a similar assessment: “Everyone knows what a good player he is and how dynamic he is and what he’s able to do with the puck. He adds another element and adds some depth and some exciting play.”
“I don’t expect him to play against the Edmonton Oilers (Tuesday) but I’d like to see him in Pittsburgh (Thursday) … if everything is correct,” Trotz said.
“I don’t want to be unrealistic in terms of expectations. We feel that the timing could be good, and I’m always fueled by my same belief that his intention has always been to come back to the NHL,” Poile said Tuesday. “I thought it was maybe going to be a year or two ago. Now could be good timing. I am cautiously optimistic.”
Let’s be honest here, I highly doubt that we will be able to see Alex Radulov return by Thursday night against the Pittsburgh Penguins on the NHL Network. I would like to see it, but it is highly unlikely. Here is when I think he will return… At the earliest, I would say Saturday against the Winnipeg Jets and at the latest, next Tuesday at St. Louis.
There have been several tweets about where he would fit in the line-up. Well, if Radulov was to end up returning, he made the coaches’ jobs a lot harder. I believe Jack Maclellan would end up being sent down to Milwaukee, or at least try. Brian McGrattan would probably not play in another game this season, until we clinch a playoff spot. Brandon Yip, Jordin Tootoo, Colin Wilson, and Craig Smith would be the decided final spots. That is if Radulov performs to his potential and gets out of Trotz’s dog house.
Here is my line-up, if I was Barry Trotz and Paul Gaustad was back.
|Gabriel Bourque||David Legwand||Patric Hornqvist|
|Sergei Kostitsyn||Mike Fisher||Martin Erat|
|Andrei Kostitsyn||Craig Smith||Alexander Radulov|
|Nick Spaling||Paul Gaustad||Matt Halischuk|
|Brandon Yip||Colin Wilson||Jordin Tootoo|
|Jack Maclellan||Brian McGrattan|
Yellow indicates Scratched Players
Yes, this line-up is stacked, if we could be completely healthy… This looks like a Stanley Cup winning line-up.