Comrade of the Night- Slava Voynov

(Courtesy of Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

On a busy night in the NHL which saw the goalie tandem of Ilya Bryzgalov and Sergei Bobrovsky give up a combined nine goals, Evgeni Nabokov get yanked ahead of a shootout, Evgeni Malkin razzling and dazzling in said shootout, and Nikolai Khabibulin helping his team beat the undefeated Washington Capitals one man stood above the rest.
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Flyers sign Bryzgalov to nine-year $51 million contract

If you plan to become rich in the NHL perhaps you should look into changing your name to Ilya. For the second consecutive summer, players with the name have seen big money and big contracts while coincidentally playing in the same division. Last year, it was the Kovalchuk saga which saw the then 27-year-old sign a 15-year $100 million with the New Jersey Devils. This year, Ilya Bryzgalov joins the fun, signing a nine-year $51 million deal with the Philadelphia Flyers a week before becoming an unrestricted free agent.
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Evgeni Nabokov Leaves KHL’s SKA St.Petersburg, Where Will He Land?


(courtesy of ALEXANDER DEMIANCHUK/REUTERS)

It appears Evgeni Nabokov’s stint back in the motherland is over as the four-year $24 million contract has been terminated by SKA St.Petersburg earlier today. Nabokov signed the contract with the intent of finishing up his career back in his adopted home country after being cut loose by the San Jose Sharks due to cap limitations. The 35-year-old netminder was the backbone to the only team he knew in the NHL and holds every major record for goalies in team history.
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Comrades of the Night-Alex Kovalev and Sergei Gonchar

For the first time in our short history we have two comrades of the night as two of Russia’s most seasoned NHL vets had a memorable night up in Ottawa. Prior to face-off, the Senators honored Sergei Gonchar on his 1,000th game in the NHL by presenting him with a plaque, a silver stick, and a portrait. A video was also shown of his career and the various teams he played for including Washington, Boston, and Pittsburgh respectively.

Gonchar becomes just the fifth Russian (and third Sergei) in league history to surpass the plateau joining the likes of Sergei Fedorov, Alexei Zhitnik, Slava Kozlov, Sergei Zubov, and teammate Alex Kovalev. Kovalev will soon surpass Fedorov for most all-time games for a Russian-born NHLer needing just 11 more games. After being criticized in the early going of the season by GM Bryan Murray, Kovalev scored two goals and added an assist en-route to a 5-2 Ottawa win.
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Comrade of the Night – Alexander Ovechkin

Ovechkin gets the best of Brodeur with a penalty shot for his 2nd of the game. (ESPN)

Well Dobriy vecher, it’s been a long time, we have been waiting for you. The most frequent winner of From Russia With Glove’s Comrade of the Night award, it only took Washington Capitals superstar Alex Ovechkin three days into the 2010 season to make his first appearance. After a somewhat quiet opening game, by his standards, as he picked up an assist on 8 shots against Atlanta, the Great Eight found himself in the “G” column once more.

Deadlocked at 2-2 at home against the New Jersey Devils, Ovechkin swooped in down the left wing, stick handling around defenders towards the middle of the ice. He then released a dart of a wrist shot with two Devils in front of him, and somehow beat Martin Brodeur anyway. From positions where no other player in the league would even think about shooting a puck, Ovechkin can find the back of the net from essentially any place on the ice.

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NHL Set to Return to Russian Soil

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It has been 20 years since the NHL ventured to Mother Russia when the Minnesota North Stars and Montreal Canadiens took on the likes of the Soviet National team. Now prior to the official start of the 2010-2011 NHL season the league has arranged for both the Phoenix Coyotes and Carolina Hurricanes to take on KHL clubs in Moscow and Riga, Latvia before the season kicks off in Finland and the Czech Republic.
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Team Russia Announces Olympic Roster

vancouver-olympics-2010-language-test-online

Russia has announced their roster for the men’s national team to compete in the Olympics this winter in Vancouver. 9 of the 23 named were of the KHL with the majority of course from the NHL. Below is the roster coached by Vychaslev Bykov. The roster will re-unite Viktor Kozlov and Sergei Fedorov with former teammates Alex Ovechkin and Alex Semin.

Goalkeepers
Ilya Bryzgalov, Phoenix Coyotes, NHL
Evgeni Nabokov, San Jose Sharks, NHL
Semyon Varlamov, Washington Capitals, NHL

Defencemen
Sergei Gonchar, Pittsburgh Penguins, NHL
Denis Grebeshkov, Edmonton Oilers, NHL
Dmitriy Kalinin, Salavat Yulaev, KHL
Konstantin Korneev, CSKA, KHL,
Andrei Markov, Montreal Canadiens, NHL
Ilya Nikulin, Ak Bars, KHL,
Fedor Tyutin, Columbus Blue Jackets, NHL
Anton Volchenkov, Ottawa Senators, NHL

Forwards
Maxim Afinogenov, Atlanta Thrashers, NHL
Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings, NHL
Sergei Fedorov, Metallurg Magnitogorsk, KHL
Ilya Kovalchuk, Atlanta Thrashers, NHL
Viktor Kozlov, Salavat Yulaev, KHL
Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins, NHL
Alexei Morozov, Ak Bars, KHL
Alexander Ovechkin, Washington Capitals, NHL
Alexander Radulov, Salavat Yulaev, KHL
Alexander Semin, Washington Capitals, NHL
Danis Zaripov, Ak Bars, KHL
Sergei Zinoviev, Salavat Yulaev, KHL

Comrade of the night-Semyon Varlamov

90981305RW010_CAPI_CANA(Courtesy of Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)

On a night when Alexander Ovechkin returned to the Washington Capitals line-up following his first career suspension, keeper Semyon Varlamov posted his second shutout of the season against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Varly stopped all 26 shots to improve his record to 12-1-2 as the 21-year-old Samara native propelled the Caps over their division rivals for the 12th consecutive time. If he hopes of cracking the Russian Olympic squad in February, Varlamov has some ground to make up to catch Evgeni Nabokov and Ilya Bryzgalov who have 16 and 17 wins respectively.

Congrats to Varly for his first COTN nod this year. Here are his two best saves of the night courtesy as always of the NHL and NHL.com

http://www.nhl.tv/team/embed.jsp?hlg=20092010,2,433&event=T.B293

http://www.nhl.tv/team/embed.jsp?hlg=20092010,2,433&event=T.B612

Bryzgalov/Ovie named NHL’s stars of the week

90955825CP001_ST_LOUIS_BLUE(Courtesy of Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

On Monday the NHL announced their weekly trio of top players from the previous week with the newest addition featuring two Russians. Ilya Bryzgalov and Alexander Ovechkin were named to the weekly award with the Coyotes goalie taking top honors.

Bryzgalov’s hot start was recognized by the league after posting a 3-0-0 record. He had a minuscule 0.95 goals-against average and .959 save percentage in those games, helping the surprising Coyotes improve their record to 5-2-0.

Ovechkin was the first star on opening week and has continued his fine play since. The Capitals star led all scorers last week with six points 4 goals 2 assistants and helped his team move into first place in the Southeast Division. Congratulations to both.