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Novokuznetsk Metallurg and KHL to part ways

May 16, 2017, 8:16 PM ET [11 Comments]
Aivis Kalnins
European Hockey Writer • RSSArchiveCONTACT
“We are pleased to welcome credentialed European Hockey Expert Aivis Kalnins to HockeyBuzz. Aivis currently resides in Latvia and has been following Euro Leagues since 2008. He has written for Last Word On Sports and One Puck Short. Aivis has made appearances in the KHL in addition to being a mainstay at virtually all IIHF events.

From KHL press release:
On the 16th of May, 2017, the KHL Executive Board gathered in Moscow for a meeting at which recent and future developments were on the agenda. The League’s leadership conducted a detailed summary of the 2016-2017 season, discussed the structure of the forthcoming 2017-2018 Championship, and examined the concept of a long-term League Strategy to cover the 2017-2023 period.

After the KHL executive board meeting, multiple sources have indicated that Metallurg Novokuznetsk is close to folding. The Kontinental Hockey League was due to have changes this off-season as Medvescak Zagreb announced they were leaving the league due to financial reasons.

Now Kuzna joins the group of departing teams and there may be more to come. League executives have refused to comment at this time.

Metallurg Novokuznetsk is a team that was founded in 1949 and has competed in multiple tiers of Russian hockey leagues. The team has played in KHL since 2008 and never qualified for the Gagarin Cup playoffs.

It was no secret that club has had financial troubles from the get-go, but this season appears to be the final straw as rumblings late in the season indicated that the team had problems paying not only player salaries but also hotels, flights and even electricity for their home arena.
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