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Vladimir Putin grants Russian citizenship to an American from the KHL
With the war in Ukraine, tensions between Russia and many countries around the world continue to rise. This time, one American has decided to switch sides and look to Russia for his future.

Brennan Menell has been granted Russian citizenship by President Vladimir Putin himself.

The new Russian signed a contract with Dynamo Moscow in April and let his bosses know that he would like to have Russian nationality so that he could play for the Russian national team.

According to Dynamo athletic director Alexei Sopin, Menell loves Russia and Moscow in particular, and that’s what convinced him. He’s even learning to speak Russian.

He’s sure to make someone jealous. Controversial field hockey player Brendan Leipsic made the request this summer, sending a letter to Vladimir Putin himself. For the moment, there’s no news on the development of his request.

Never drafted into the NHL, Menell played with the Minnesota Wild’s school club from 2017 to 2020. He finally got his chance in the NHL during the 2019-20 season, playing 5 NHL games.

During the 2020-21 season affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the American decided to play for Minsk Dynamo in the KHL. He then returned to play with the Toronto Marlies and Lehigh Valley Phantoms in the AHL the following campaign.

Menell is currently under contract with Moscow Dynamo in the KHL. With Russian nationality, he will now be able to play for the national team, as well as in the KHL. He’s doing well in Russia, collecting 24 points in 44 games as a defenseman.

Perhaps Menell will one day face his former country, the USA, in an international competition. It’s not likely to happen any time soon, though. The IIHF has to let Russia play in its competitions for it to happen, which is likely to take quite a while yet.

In gusto

– The Blue Jays are on the move.

– A nice shirt for the Alouettes player.

– JJ Watt, of course.

– Ayoye.

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