Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Malkin to join Russia for WJC

This is good news if you'll be cheering for Team Russia come Dec. 26 and the start of the World Junior Championships.

My early prediction? Russia wins this thing.

As veteran Globe and Mail hockey reporter Eric Duhatschek opines, Evgeni Malkin is not only one of the top Russian juniors in the world, but one of their top players overall. All reports indicate he's been the Russian Super Elite league's best player this season, which is saying a lot considering the calibre of talent playing there.

The big decision for Russia was whether to let Malkin play for the junior team for the third time or to have him suit up with the big boys at the Olympics in February. The thinking was that he could only play for one of the teams, but now my guess is that the Russians will see how he does here and go from there. We very well could see him at both tournaments (and I wonder who the last player to accomplish that was).

I'll be sure to talk to him when Russia meets Latvia in Kamloops on Dec. 29.


At 6:05 p.m., December 07, 2005, Blogger Michael said...

Mr. Mirtle, could you ask him if he is concerned for Ovechkin and Semin getting held to their contracts in Russia? Is he afraid that the Russian Federation will bully him to stay there too? Will Russian players worry how this will affect GM's attitudes to draft new Russian kids into the NHL?

Just things your readers want to know.

At 9:35 p.m., December 07, 2005, Anonymous Sean Kaye said...

Didn't Lindros play in the WJC and then nine months later play for Canada at the Canada Cup? I reckon that's about as close as you're going to get.

At 10:58 p.m., December 07, 2005, Blogger jamestobrien said...

Man...the only bright side I can look on as a Penguins fan is an amazing future.

Crosby, Malkin, Fleury, Whitney, Malone...not too shabby. Not too shabby at all.


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