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[Report] Voynov intends to return to Russia


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Rich Hammond Verified account‏ @Rich_Hammond

Slava Voynov's agent has announced that Voynov intends to return to Russia with his family (self-deport).

Full statement from Rolland Hedges, Voynov's lawyer:


I was told, by an immigration attorney, that self-deportation leaves open the possibility Voynov could return years later on new visa.

Clearly a bit of a bomb, even if we knew it was a possibility. Wow.

Maybe eyeing a return later? Or just getting out before the US can make it official?

Chris Johnston ‏@reporterchris

Slava Voynov had $19.25M in actual dollars owed on the remaining four years of his contract ... #LAKings now off the hook.

Elliotte Friedman ‏@FriedgeHNIC

As of now, Voynov's contract has not been voided. So, we will see how this proceeds.

EDIT: now the Kings have weighed in:

LA Kings ‏@LAKings

The Los Angeles Kings have issued the following statement in regards to Slava Voynov. >> http://kings.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=779399 …

On July 2, Slava Voynov entered a plea of no contest to domestic violence. Since that development, Mr. Voynov has been in the custody of the Seal Beach Detention Center and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. During this period of detention, the Los Angeles Kings decided he would no longer play for the team. The method by which we would ensure this outcome was something we carefully considered and we established a deadline of September 17 – the beginning of our 2015-16 training camp – to reach this outcome. Recently it became evident to us that our conclusion to this process would be to terminate Mr. Voynov’s Standard Player’s Contract. However, Mr. Voynov’s announcement today of his intention to leave the United States and return to Russia makes the termination unnecessary.

As we have publicly stated since Mr. Voynov’s arrest last year, the Kings organization will not tolerate domestic violence. As part of that commitment, we will soon announce a series of new Conduct Awareness Training Initiatives that reflect the values and principles central to our franchise.

Easy to say now of course they were going to terminate the contract, but it'll certainly be voided or counted as a retiring contract (however that works technically).

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Added the Kings response in the OP, they were going to terminate Voynov's contract tomorrow as a deadline prior to training camp, but him returning to Russia means they won't have to (as I'd assume it just falls off as if he was retiring, much like Kovalchuk did).

Chris Johnston ‏@reporterchris

The #LAKings say that terminating Slava Voynov's contract is "unnecessary" because he's returning to Russia. They'll retain his NHL rights.

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Good point.

Sabres > Kings this season IMO. With all the locker room drama, plus Lucic, LA won't be a very fun place this year. Especially if they start losing. Franson gets a chance to help a young team with future and current superstars make it to the playoffs.

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Pierre LeBrun ‏@Real_ESPNLeBrun

So as I speculated earlier, the play would appear to be to suspend Voynov and retain his NHL rights while he's gone to Russia

By retaining his rights, he becomes an asset for LA to trade one day; mind you, Voynov would still face NHL discipline if he ever returned

Whatever the technical term is I guess. Suspended in this manner would certainly remove his cap hit just as it has been for some time now (after the NHL approved it earlier).

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From where I sit; I believe he would have had immigration troubles anyways. Leaving appeared to be a foregone conclusion.

Which left just posturing and spin.

The Kings should not have his caphit on their roster in my opinion. A little surprising, one tends to think professional athletes, celebrities are above laws and rulings. Either way I hope the person learns from this experience and becomes better for it.


Perhaps he should have apologized to his wife. As opposed to the NHL. His teammates sure. But that is secondary.

Hopefully we don't hear some sad story surrounding her in the future!

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Anybody know what the King's D core looks like on paper now? I know they gained Ehrhoff, but losing Mitchell, Sekera, and now Voynov is really gonna hurt their D core.

Their situation starts and finishes with Doughty. They will never be in a horrible place.

McNabb was gaining ground and may be as good as Voynov was very soon. McNabb, Muzzin, Martinez & Doughty was already an enviable crew of big, young, mobile defenseman all with speed & skills. They are the heart of the Kings possession game as they get the puck, get it up ice and don't lose it. They all contribute to play making. Then are anchored by stay at home crease clearers Mitchell & Greene. It was actually a very good defence crew before they signed Ehrhoff and even though they lost Voynov.

Ehrhoff was signed because they were not deep behind those ^ guys... Guys like Martinez missed major chunks of last season and without Voynov they had no replacement.

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