Update, 4:21 p.m.:
As Random_Ranger points out in the comments section no Russia doesn't necessarily mean no overseas for the Rangers. There have been rumors that Sweden could be an option. Assume Rangers would still be a front runner due to necessity with MSG renovations.Original Post:
Dmitry Chesnokov at Puck Daddy
reports that a deal that would have brought the Rangers and Capitals to Russia to open the 2011-12 is now dead..."KHL sources said the reason there will be no NHL teams in Russia this season was the League's revenue guarantee request. We were told the NHL asked for a guarantee of $2-$3 million for the trip to happen. The KHL saw it as unreasonable because of simple economics — the Russian league would not be able to break even due to Russian hockey economic streams."
According to Chesnokov, at one point the optimism was so high for a deal that a Rangers representative traveled to Russia to discuss the plans.
Puck Daddy's sources inside the KHL also confirmed that the Capitals and Rangers were the only two teams the KHL wanted to invite to Russia. The plan was to have the teams play exhibition games against KHL clubs, and then open the NHL season with two games against each other — one in Moscow and another one in St. Petersburg....wonder how this will affect the Rangers schedule with the MSG renovations to the bottom bowl not expected to be finished by the beginning of the season. Maybe they could start the season in Phoenix then hit every NHL team up the coast of California, then into Vancouver and finally across through Calgary & Edmonton. How's that for a road trip to start the season?
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