Havlat leaves Czech league for Russian

Updated: November 11, 2004, 10:12 AM ET
Associated Press

TORONTO -- Ottawa Senators wing Martin Havlat is the latest NHL star to join the Russian league during the lockout.

He left Znojmo of the Czech league for Moscow Dynamo on Wednesday and most likely will play his first game for his Russian club next week. It's believed Dynamo will pay Havlat $1.2 million for the rest of the season.

"From Martin's perspective, having the chance to go to Russia and play in a very competitive league, he's really looking forward to being part of that," said Havlat's agent, Allan Walsh,

About one-third of the NHL's estimated 750 players have joined European teams during the lockout, the International Ice Hockey Federation says. Most have contract clauses allowing them to return if the lockout ends.

At Dynamo, Havlat will join Detroit Red Wings star center Pavel Datsyuk as the Russian league continues to load up on top NHL talent.

AK Bars Kazan leads the way with 11 NHL players, including Brad Richards, Vincent Lecavalier and Nikolai Khabibulin of the Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning as well as Alexei Kovalev of the Montreal Canadiens, Ilya Kovalchuk of the Atlanta Thrashers and Alexei Morozov of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Omsk Avangard completed the transfer Monday of New York Rangers star Jaromir Jagr.


Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press

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