Last night, at 11pm, I got the call. I had heard rumors back when I was traversing the French Quarter of New Orleans early last week. But I held off, thinking it would not happen. That it simply could not happen. Could it?
Last night, it did happen.
Alexei Yashin will be returning to the Isles for a 4 year, 16.5 million deal. This was done between his new agent, Boris Ivanovich Grishenko and Charles Wang directly. The deal is still waiting for league approval. Sources say that despite the rule that bought-out players cannot resign with the same team, because he left the league for the 2007-2008 season, it is nullified.
When Alexei Yashin was bought out last summer, there had been rumblings that he would like to return to the Isles for less. Unfortunately, NHL rules dictated anyone who was bought out COULD NOT be resigned by the same team. Instead, Yashin was forced to endure lowball contracts from such teams like Toronto and Detroit. Nonplussed, he and his agent looked closely internationally instead.
So he went to Russia, had a good year and great playoffs. Charles Wang and Garth Snow watched closely.
"We've had a feed from Locamotiv since late December," said Garth Snow. "Charles always had a soft spot for Alexei and we felt that with a new lease on life and a year internationally would help him get back to the level we traded for back when Mike was here"
Alway considered a bit of an enigma and very reserved, Yashin was unable to ever meet the expectations that his 10 year deal created. At one point he was made captain, hoping that perhaps the responsibility would be the difference, putting him at stake.
"Yeah, in hindsight, it really would have been better to just have a shorter deal," said Charles Wang. "Maybe 9 or 8 really might have let up of the fan pressure."
Curiously, Yashin's girlfriend, Carol Alt, seemed to be in the dark of these plans as she criticized the Isles for the handling of her man on the WFAN radio. Evidently, the only familiar parties was Yashin, his new agent, Charles Wang and Garth Snow.
More Changes Afoot
Charles Wang has pressed forward the beginning of what will be several dynamic changes that might come sooner than later. With Yashin under a new contract, he become 1st line center, slated to play with Guerin. A player to be named later is slated to join them. It is believed that it might be Oleg Kvasha who is looking to make a comeback in the NHL after tearing up the Russian league.
"I read the Isles message boards and see how I am missed. It really warms the heart. Though I am not sure I played as well as they remember."
- Oleg Kvasha
Other rumored moves include the return of Bryan McCabe (if bought out), Brad Isbister, and a potential trade with Anahiem for Todd Betruzzi. The Isles have also have inquired on the status of Robert Rechiel and Mick Vukota to add to their assistant coaching staff.
Mike Milbury, had this statement via email to me last night . . .
"I am glad to see these longterm plans finally come to fruition. This was the very plan I considered before stepping down as GM and allowing Neil Smith to hang himself in less than two months. Of course, I had hoped I'd be given the job back. But c'est la vie."
There is a new day dawning on Long Island, indeed.