If you have been a fan of the National Hockey League for any length of time over the last 10 years you're likely very aware of who the Detroit Red Wings are. Considered by many to be one of the league's model franchises, especially when it comes to consistency, the Red Wings have been a competitive club for a generation of fans, but one of the men who helped build that legacy may be about to move on.
Over the week-end a report from Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman revealed that there was a very real chance forward Pavel Datsyuk could leave the National Hockey League after this season comes to a close. According to Friedman Datsyuk would leave for the KHL, where he would play out the final years of his career closer to home. As transcribed by The Score:
We've all understood that at some point, Pavel Datsyuk would go back to Russia and play. There is a legitimate chance, according to sources, that might be after this season, and if it does occur, it would be for family reasons.
Datsyuk isn't commenting, and neither is the club. It is expected that everyone will sit down after the season for a final decision.
Now the key thing to remember here if he does go, his cap hit of $7.5 million stays on the Wings roster since he signed after he turned 35.
On Monday Datsyuk was asked about the rumor by Red Wings reporter Helen St. James of The Detroit Free Press, and he didn't exactly deny it.
"It's hard to say. Never know what going to happen", said Datsyuk.
It's hard to imagine a Red Wings roster, or an NHL without the Magic Man.
"It's hard to say. Never know what going to happen" - Pavel Datsyuk on future.— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) April 4, 2016