Could Ivan Fedotov Be Coming to Philly This Fall?

On May 7, 2022, Ivan Fedotov signed a one-year contract with the Flyers to bring him over to North America after a pretty damn good career in Russia, especially after his performance as Russia’s starter at the 2022 Winter Olympics. Nearly two months later, Fedotov was detained for evading military service. After a very confusing period of time, it seemed like he had been taken into custody and then possibly poisoned before being banished to the Arctic Circle where he could still play hockey, but serve in the military.

Ivan Miroschnichenko, selected by Washington 20th overall last summer, terminated his contract with Avangard Omsk of the KHL and signed his ELC with Washington. This started a discussion about Russian prospects, mainly Matvei Michkov, but Flyers fans certainly thought of Ivan Fedotov. With his year of military experience coming to an end, there was a question of whether or not Fedotov would come to Philly next year.

Then the question seemed to be answered…

It appears that any dream of Fedotov coming to Philly is squashed. Of course, the Flyers have Carter Hart and it looks like Samuel Ersson will make the crease a competition, so Fedotov does not appear to be a huge loss for the Flyers as there still is that goalie competition that we hoped he would create by coming over.

It appears that the Flyers will still have his rights until they relinquish them or when normal Russian rights to players end, but now the Flyers have a valueless piece in the system. The Flyers really can’t trade his rights because what team is gonna give up anything for a guy that is reported to be staying in Russia his whole career. So, the Flyers probably hold onto his rights for a while just in case anything changes.

Of course, some questions arise. The first is wondering how much of this decision was made under Fedotov’s own accord. Was he told that it would be in his best interest to stay in Russia with CSKA or threatened with more military time if he tried to leave? Was he scared that he might get in trouble if he tried to leave again? These are questions we probably won’t get an answer to anytime soon, if ever.

Another question that arises comes from the Flyers organization. How confident are the Flyers in Michkov’s ability to come over if the Flyers pick him? Kirill Kaprizov was able to come back to North America after having some trouble with that and, of course, Miroshichenko just terminated his contract, but with what happened to Fedotov, do the Flyers feel comfortable taking Michkov if the Flyers don’t get a top-two pick and Michkov drops to them? The upside is a generational scoring talent, but the worst would be Michkov never coming over. The Flyers might be able to get a 2nd round pick, but that would mean giving up his rights.

With the recent news about some Russian prospects, would you want to select Michkov at seven, eight, or nine if he falls?

By Noah Caplan
Photo creds: NBC Sports


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