directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Latest on Filatov

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Latest on Filatov

Wow what a boring NHL news day!

The only real noteworthy nugget going on was what Erik pointed out in the comments of the previous post and that was the latest info on Nikita Filatov provided by Puk-rakers:

NHL agent Don Meehan told me today that Nikita Filatov and his family are in the process of making plans to fly to Toronto, perhaps as soon as later this week. It's expected that Filatov's visa will be approved by the U.S. Embassy in Moscow within the next couple of days.

The plan is for Filatov and his family to spend a few days with Meehan and others from the agency.

The part that is the most interesting to me is the "Toronto" line. Now I may be reading into this (and at this point I'm so bored that I'm grasping at anything to make some coversation) but if Filatov had his US visa why not come directly to Columbus? Couldn't his family help him get situated in Columbus for a few days just as easily as they could in Toronto? Russian can come visit simply with a passport if I'm not mistaken.

One thought in particular is that Canada's immigration laws are much more relaxed than those of the US. It wouldn't surprise me that the Filatov's plan is to come over to Toronto before his actual US visa is established just to get out of dodge and ensure there isn't any funny business in Russia. Kind of a cloak and dagger sutiation just to be on the safe side.

Of course it could be just as Portzline prints that they want to hook up with his agent in Toronto and then head down to Columbus once everything is in order, legalized and the family is comfortable (but then that would be to boring to blog about). also takes a quick look at 2009 free agents. Here is what they had to say about Columbus' crop:

Christian Backman ($3.4 million)
After a brief stint on Broadway, the solid second-pair blueliner will try to prove he isn’t as prone to injuries as his past suggests.

Manny Malhotra ($1.5 million)
Who knows what Malhotra could have achieved if he was developed properly with the Rangers when he entered the league.

Michael Peca ($1.3 million)
Once thought of as one of the game’s great leaders, the 34-year-old is now little more than a fringe player on the only NHL team to have never made the playoffs.

Other ’09 UFAs - Fredrik Norrena, Mike York.

Nothing too exciting there although if one were to assume none of those players were to return then that is a saving of 7.1 million (plus whatever York would make if he makes the big squad).

Of course expect the big story next offseason for the Jackets to be getting Rick Nash extended. Everything else will take a back seat to that until it gets done.

Anyone out there make it out to the Clippers game last night? Apparenlty Scott Howson threw out the first pitch while Derick Brassard, Jared Boll and Kris Russell flipped the "countdown to Huntington Ballpark" sign in the outfield. Hitch was also in attendance.

CBJ continues to represent this offseason.

23 days til camp!!


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