No comebacks for Fantastic Finn Teemu Selanne: “My career is over, that much is certain”

Adam Proteau
Teemu Selanne (Marianne Helm/Getty Images)

If you were desperately hanging on to the hope hockey legend Teemu Selanne would continue his professional playing career – either in Europe or back in the NHL – even as he approaches his mid-forties, you can let go of it: the surefire Hockey-Hall-of-Famer confirmed Wednesday he’s retired for good.

In an interview with the International Ice Hockey Federation’s website, the 44-year-old Selanne made it clear he won’t be tempted by lucrative contract offers from the KHL or any other league. Read more

This is the biggest, strangest hit of the year

Matt Larkin
BigHit

Note the headline. It ain’t hyperbole. And to throw around “biggest hit of the year” is bold in October.

But this WWE-inspired body blast by Kristaps Zile earns such high scores in brutality, creativity and originality that it’ll be tough to top. The hit happened in an MHL (the Kontinental League’s junior circuit) game last Friday. Zile, an HK Riga defenseman, laid a hip check on Lukas Pozgay of HC Red Bull. Pozgay made the mistake of holding on for dear life, and Zile proceeded to carry Pozgay several meters before stapling him to the boards, as forcefully as you would a particularly thick document. Here’s the unstoppable finishing move, complete with death metal:

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KHL has two fastest goal records set in one day

Wojtek Wolski scores.

The NHL season may still be two days away, but the KHL season is in full swing – and Monday a couple of goal speed records were set.

First, there was Wojtek Wolski who is playing his second season with Nizhny Novgorod Torpedo. His team won its game against Sibir 3-2 and Wolski scored all three goals.

What made it special, though, was that Wolski scored the natural hat trick in a KHL record 1:47. Here they are: Read more

Electrifying Jeremy Bracco leads off Ryan Kennedy’s Hot List

Team USA's Jeremy Bracco (Photo courtesy of Tom Sorensen/USHL)

Welcome back to another season of The Hot List, my weekly update of who is making noise in the world of prospects. Players are eligible for the list as long as they haven’t stepped on the ice for a regular season NHL game; otherwise, they come from all different leagues and development points. Some will be on hot streaks, others will be new names you’ll want to bank in your memory. All will be potential NHLers one day. Hockey’s back, so let’s take a look at this week’s roundup.

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KHL coach Andrei Nazarov goes nuts, flips off refs and fans

Matt Larkin
Nazarov Mad

Andrei Nazarov had quite the heel turn in Wednesday’s Kontinental League tilt between Barys and Admiral.

Nazarov, Barys’ coach, wasn’t pleased with a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty. He took it out on the refs, flipping them off, and when he was tossed out of the game, he turned his attention to the Admiral fans.

Nazarov was extremely efficient in his obscene gestures, packing many into a rapid-fire barrage. Take a look:

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See KHL’s Sochi expansion team score 19 seconds into first home game with beautiful goal

Bolshoy Ice Dome. (Photo by Joe Scarnici/Getty Images)

The Bolshoy Ice Dome opened in 2014 for the Winter Olympics and this year it’s home to a KHL expansion team. The Sochi Leopards won one of their first three games on the road and yesterday they played their home opener.

And here’s the first-ever home goal scored by the Leopards, which came just 19 seconds into the game against Ekaterinburg’s Avtomobilist. Alexei Krutov, a player who’s spent his entire career in Russia and Switzerland, left former NHL defenseman Sami Lepisto in the dust and on his butt, and then beat goalie Jakub Kovar through the five hole.

Sochi won its first home game 6-3. According to the KHL’s website, there were about 8,000 people in attendance. Read more

Arena of KHL’s Donbass Donetsk “seized” by armed men

Ruslan Fedotenko. (CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AFP/Getty Images)

Last season in the KHL, Ukraine-based Donbass Donetsk finished as the fourth seed in the Western Conference. But during their playoff run, they had to move out of their home arena and into one in Bratislava, Slovakia because of the ongoing proxy Russian invasion of eastern Ukraine.

The region is still a hot spot in the conflict as forces representing both sides struggle for control. According to the hockey club, their arena was broken into Wednesday by armed men who “seized” the offices inside the building. It wasn’t immediately clear if the group was the same one that looted the building and set it on fire in May. Read more

The best Russian goalie prospect in years is finally here

Ryan Kennedy
Tampa Bay's Andrey Vasilevskiy (Photo by Gregory Shamus/NHLI via Getty Images)

Once a team drafts a hot name in the prospect world, it only stands to reason that fans would want to see that player as soon as possible, even if it’s not with the NHL club right away. For Tampa Bay Lightning boosters, the wait was a little longer with netminder Andrey Vasilevskiy, but he’s finally here.

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