Alex Ovechkin officially signed with Dynamo Moscow Wednesday and almost immediately made a vague threat to stay in Russia if player salaries get cut as the result of an ongoing NHL lockout.
"As to the future, it will depend on what kind of conditions there will be in the NHL with the new CBA," Ovechkin said. "If our contracts get slashed, I will have to think whether to return there or not. I won't rule out staying in the KHL, even past this season."
Since the lockout is still in its early days, Ovechkin has apparently embraced the brinksmanship mode of communication popularized by both sides of the dispute.
Katie Carrera of the Post lays out Ovechkin's predicament nicely.
If Ovechkin were to stay in Russia whenever the NHL resumes, he would be in violation of his contract with the Capitals, which runs through the 2020-21 season. The breach of contract would also go against the agreement between the NHL and KHL about honoring each other's player contracts, would bring sanctions from the IIHF and likely lead to the NHL saying its players can't participate in the Olympics.
The 2014 Winter Olympics, for the record, will be held in Sochii, Russia, and the prospects of Ovechkin putting his chance to play for an Olympic gold on Mother Russia's soil are, to put it mildly, unlikely.
It's only Day 4, folks. There's much more stuff like this to come.
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