MOSCOW, October 26 (RIA Novosti)
SKA St. Petersburg has traded Czech goaltender Jakub Stepanek and the KHL rights to Detroit Red Wings forward Tomas Tatar to Lev Prague, both KHL teams said Friday.
In return, SKA receives Lev's first-round picks in the 2013 and 2014 KHL drafts.
Stepanek, 26, had played 95 games for SKA and started the season as first-choice goaltender before being ousted from the squad by lockout signing Sergei Bobrovsky of the Columbus Blue Jackets.
SKA general manager Alexei Kasatonov told R-Sport that the team was betting on a long NHL lockout.
"We're seeing that the lockout is dragging on and we have Bobrovsky, so there's no sense at all in hanging onto Jakub for the sake of it," he said.
"He's not really adapting to the SKA game."
If the lockout ends and Bobrovsky returns to Columbus, SKA could be left with no goaltending cover other than Ilya Yezhov, who has played 32 KHL games in two seasons in the league, or youngsters Evgeny Ivannikov and Dmitry Shikin, who have never played KHL hockey.
"They can play and we need to give them a chance," Kasatonov said of the young goaltenders.
Tatar was drafted by both SKA and the Detroit Red Wings in 2009.
The 21-year-old made his NHL debut in 2010, scoring one goal in nine games, and spent last season at Detroit’s AHL farm team.
Lev did not specify whether Tatar would join the team.
He is currently playing in the Slovak league during the lockout.
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