MOSCOW, September 19 (RIA Novosti)
Boston Bruins goaltender Anton Khudobin became the latest NHL star to sign a lockout contract in the KHL on Wednesday, joining Moscow suburb team Atlant.
At least 13 NHLers have already signed lockout deals to play in the expanding Eastern European league, most returning natives.
The Kazakh-born Russian said he had been persuaded to join Atlant after a tour of the facilities.
"I was shown the ice palace in Mytishchi and I liked it," he said of the team's home arena. "I’m very glad that Atlant made me an offer and that I have signed for this team,” Khudobin was quoted by Atlant’s website.
Khudobin, 26, started his career at Metallurg Magnitogorsk, winning the Russian league in 2007 and departing for North America right after the triumph.
He spent two seasons with the Minnesota Wild before he was traded to Boston in 2011, becoming the backup goalkeeper in the Stanley Cup-winning team.
Khudobin made only one appearance for the Bruins last season, playing at farm club the Providence Bruins.
Atlant is second in the Western Conference with four wins in six games this season.
The deadline for averting a lockout passed Saturday after the NHL and the players’ association failed to agree terms on a new collective contract.
It sparked a flurry of trades, the highest-profile of which has been Evgeni Malkin's return to Metallurg Magnitogorsk.
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This war would most probably not be precipitated not by direct actions of the Russian or Ukrainian governments. The more likely cause is the clash of rival armed volunteer groups on the streets of eastern Ukraine, which would lead to the progressive involvement of armed forces on either side.