The rumor has been around for a while: defenseman Slava Voynov is looking to make a return to the National Hockey League for the 2018-19 season.
The defenseman has not played an NHL game since Oct. 19, 2014. Hours after assisting on the first goal in a 2-1 win over Minnesota, authorities were called to his home. The Russian defenseman remains indefinitely suspended from the NHL over a 2014 incident that got him sentenced to 90 days in jail on a misdemeanour charge of corporal injury to his spouse Marta Varlamova. At the time of the incident a Redondo Beach police officer reported that Voynov’s wife had a laceration over her left eye where blood was streaming, as well as red marks on her neck. He also claimed that Voynov pushed his wife to the ground and then kicked her while she was down and that he also choked her on three separate occasions during the assault. When the officer arrived at the scene of the crime he noted that there was blood all over the bedroom and that there was blood on the comforter as well as a bloody hand-print on the floor.
Rather than spend an undefined amount of time in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for deportation hearings, Voynov agreed to voluntarily leave the country and return home to Russia.
Now, there are somewhat new shocking developments on the story. According to Sportsnet insider Elliotte Friedman,“an expungement hearing is scheduled for July 2 in California court to remove the no-contest plea from his record. If that request is granted, he will have no criminal record. That would mean no further immigration problems in the U.S. or Canada. In fact, he’s had a U.S. Visitors’ Visa for at least a year, and, last summer, had some surgery done in Denver.”
Of course, it is hard to believe that any team in the NHL would be willing to sign a controversial player like Voynov, especially at a time where sexual assault and harassment are finally taken more seriously.
However, Friedman revealed that there is interest in the right-shot defenseman who is still just 28 years old.
“But whoever signs him — or considers it — is going to take some serious heat, especially on social media. No one wants to go on-record because of the sensitivity.”
Already, the fact that Voynov might walk away with a criminal record is disgusting. Where is the justice there? Some will say that Voynov and his wife have worked things out since they have remained together, with they’re two kids… however, with today’s culture, you know there will be some criticism on social media…