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Evgeni Kuznetsov suspended by the IIHF

August 23, 2019, 8:30 AM ET [9 Comments]
Aivis Kalnins
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The following is a statement from IIHF:

The IIHF has suspended Russian ice hockey player Yevgeni Kuznetsov for a violation of World Anti-Doping Code Article 2.1 (Presence of a Prohibited Substance).

The case concerns a test indicating a prohibited substance, cocaine, according to section S6.a (non-specified substance) of the World Anti-Doping Code 2019 Prohibited List. The prohibited substance was found in a doping control which occurred on 26 May 2019 at the 2019 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship.

The player didn’t require the analysis of his B-sample and was provisionally suspended on 13th June 2019.

The period of ineligibility to be imposed shall be four years, concluding on 12th June 2023.

This in no way shape or form affects Kuznetsov's eligibility to play in the NHL.

However, it's expected that the NHL will launch an investigation given the fact that Kuznetsov had lied to the league.

"While I have never taken illegal drugs in my life and career, I would like to publicly apologize to the Capitals, my teammates, our fans and everyone else, for putting myself in a bad situation," "This was a hard lesson for me to learn." Kuznetsov had stated through Capitals PR once the NHL's investigation had concluded.

Well... he obviously lied.

“Kuznetsov can still appeal the decision - you need to ask him about his own actions.''
''He refused to do the B sample, it was his decision. ” Fasel tells Russian news agency ''TASS''.

Statement from the Russian Hockey Federation:

The International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) informed the RIHF that a banned substance was found in the doping test of ice hockey player Evgeny Kuznetsov, an offence which has been punished with a four-year ban. The start date of the ban is 13 June 2019. The Russian Ice Hockey Federation has always opposed, and will continue to oppose, the use of banned substances in sport. In RIHF national teams, events are regularly held which emphasize the need to comply with anti-doping rules. When joining the national team, athletes are constantly monitored by specialists, so the usage of banned substances when with the Russian national team is not possible.

The RIHF will closely monitor developments and will take all necessary measures in accordance with WADA, the all-Russian anti-doping rules and the IIHF requirements.
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