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Nikita Scherbak: being Russian has closed many doors for him in Europe

Since Nikita Scherbak returned to Europe at the end of the 2018-19 season, he’s had quite an eventful career. Between the KHL, a return to the AHL, Slovakia and the Czech Republic, we’re talking about a guy whose shoes have traveled a lot.

And let’s not forget that this week, he packed his bags again, and will be spending next season in France.

Still, it was a bit of a surprise to learn that he’d be landing in France, given that we’re not talking about a European powerhouse in field hockey terms. Even if Scherbak hasn’t had a great career, we’re still talking about a solid player who’s only 27 years old, after all.

Raphaël Doucet (La Poche Bleue) took the time to talk to him about his signing, and the Russian forward was quite honest: the fact that he decided to sign in France is partly explained by the fact that his Russian nationality closes a lot of doors for him in Europe.

In fact, Scherbak is happy to be in France on a personal level, seeing the country as a good place for his family (remember that his wife is from Quebec and the couple are expecting their second child in the coming weeks) and as a place where he can finally offer them some stability.

And since he didn’t want to return to Russia given the current situation, he preferred to sacrifice some of the quality of the league he’ll be playing in to make a decision with his family in mind.

Hard to blame him for that, we agree.

That said, it’s a shame for a guy like Scherbak that he’s a collateral victim of all that’s going on in Ukraine. The Czech Republic (where he played in recent years), Germany, Switzerland and the UK would all be among the countries with leagues that block Russian players.

And once again, it’s a real shame for him and for other Russian players who want to play in Europe but don’t feel comfortable returning to Russia under the circumstances.

The good news, at least, is that Scherbak seems to be at peace with his decision and has secured a quality of life for his family in the process. We wish him stability over the next few years, but also good times with his family.

In full

– This corroborates what we first reported to you a week ago.

– What a shame that injuries undermined several great years of his career.

– A case settled in Seattle.

– Signature in Pittsburgh.

– The goal of the event is to please the fans. It’s up to him to find a way to endear himself to the fans if he wants to take part (something he’s not very good at).

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