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A Russian Blue Jackets prospect is homesick
In 2019, the Blue Jackets acquired Dmitri Voronkov via the draft. The Russian subsequently remained in his home country until this season.

Indeed, he and the Jackets agreed on the terms of a two-year contract last May. An intriguing detail of this contract is a clause specifying that, if he doesn’t make the line-up by December, he has the option of being loaned back to his club in the KHL.

But that’s obviously not a problem, since Voronkov is in the Columbus line-up and he’s very good. In 15 games, he has nine points.

However, one concern is emerging: the young prodigy is considering a return to his native country, as he is deeply homesick.

You don’t see that very often…

The team’s GM, Jarmo Kekalainen, said the team would evaluate the case, but “it’s normal for a youngster to feel far from home”. Of course, if Voronkov really does decide to leave for Russia, it would be a big loss for Pascal Vincent’s team.

He’s one of our most committed forwards. And in Montreal, he’ll be remembered as a no-nonsense guy. In his first NHL game, he threw down the gloves against a certain Arber Xhekaj.

Voronkov has no command of English, a shortcoming that could have been remedied in the four years prior to his arrival in Columbus, considering he was drafted by an English-speaking team.

Despite this, the Jackets did everything they could to surround the youngster. They have mandated other Russian players such as Ivan Provorov, Kirill Marchenko and Yegor Chinakhov to help him acclimatize to his new environment.

Kekalainen plans to introduce him to the Russians in Columbus. In addition, the potential involvement of Fedor Tyutin, a former NHL defenseman and Ohio resident, offers the prospect of mentoring, as has been the case in the past with Marchenko.

Although the organization is doing its utmost to support Voronkov, the challenge remains, especially as he speaks no English and has no family members with him. A reality that can only add to the complexity of his situation. It must indeed be difficult. Good luck to him.

He’s not the first or the last to leave Ohio, in any case…

In Brief

– Of note.

– Notice to interested parties.

– A new challenge for the Quebecer.

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