- © RIA Novosti. Vladimir Astapkovich
© RIA Novosti. Vladimir Astapkovich
MOSCOW, October 5 (RIA Novosti) – Toronto Maple Leafs forward Mikhail Grabovski feels good at lockout team CSKA Moscow and is ready to write off the remainder of the NHL season, he said Friday.
The Belarusian international teamed up with Detroit Red Wings star Pavel Datsyuk and Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov in September and has scored one goal in his four games since.
“I have no idea when the lockout end," the 28 year old admitted. "It’s not that I’m not interested, but it doesn’t matter, to be honest,” Grabovski said.
“If I’m told to return, I will because I have a contract with Toronto. But I won’t be upset if I spend the whole season at CSKA.”
The left wing signed a five-year deal with the Maple Leafs in March and is obliged to return to Canada eventually.
“I’ve penned a contract for five years and I must serve it regardless of the amount that I’ll earn. And then we’ll see.”
Grabovski claimed that adaptation period in Russia is close to its end, as evidenced by his performance in Thursday’s 2-1 win over Spartak Moscow.
“It was hard before the Spartak clash due to a new atmosphere, because everything here is different than in America. There were some difficulties,” the player said, adding that he still has to improve his physical condition.
Grabovski spent the last four seasons in Toronto after two years with the Montreal Canadiens, racking up the record of 319 appearances and 201 points.
He played for Russian teams Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk and Dynamo Moscow before moving to North America in 2006.