- © REUTERS / John Gress
© REUTERS / John Gress
MOSCOW, June 23 (R-Sport) - Vezina Trophy-winning goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky has held talks with KHL president Alexander Medvedev about a move to Russia’s SKA St. Petersburg, Medvedev said Sunday.
Bobrovsky’s dominant season for the Columbus Blue Jackets made him the first Russian to win the NHL's top goaltending honor. Columbus and SKA have both made offers to Bobrovsky, who would become the KHL’s biggest-ever signing were he to return to Russia.
“I’ve met Sergei and his agent. We held negotiations, an offer was made,” said Medvedev, who is also a director of SKA. “Now the player has to make his decision. The choice is his.”
Medvedev suggested a move to SKA could help ensure Bobrovsky of being Russia’s starting goaltender at next year’s Olympics in Sochi, the first time the Winter Games have been held in his home country.
“What could be better than playing front of the national team’s training staff in an Olympic year?” Medvedev said, and denied a move out of the world’s biggest league would be a bad move for Bobrovsky.
“We think that this is an excellent offer for Sergei to continue his career, a return to his home league, to a strong team,” he said. “I absolutely do not agree with those who think it would be a step backwards.”
SKA has reportedly offered $10 million a year to Bobrovsky, and his pay could be exempted from the KHL salary cap under league rules, which allow certain major signings not to be counted, at the league’s discretion.
Bobrovsky played for SKA during last season’s lockout.