The Oct. 15 edition of Sports Illustrated gives a peek into Putin's plans for a return to the bad old days. It seems the NHL is having more and more trouble getting access to Russian hockey players:
NHL Commissioner Bill Daly suspects there's more at work than Russians wanting to raise the transfer fee of $200,000 per player that's in place with other national federations. "I was told the federation was fine with the transfer agreement [last May], but it was up to [president Vladimir] Putin," he said. "I'm led to believe the Russian government is interested in the performance of its hockey teams and players."
Added Tampa Bay Lightning GM Jay Feaster about dealing with the Ruskies:
"We went through heaven, hell, and high water to get [Svitov] out of [Russia] in the first place...I felt like I was in an Ian Fleming novel at times."
The NHL's Russian revolution appears to be coming to a close.