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If Ivan Demidov doesn’t play in the KHL, the Habs will engage with him
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The talented Ivan Demidov is under contract for another year in Russia. After that, the plan is to see the Canadian prospect land in Quebec for the remainder of the season.

Is that one-year contract the end of the world? No. After all, it’s rare for a prospect to break into a National League lineup at just 18 years of age.

So one year isn’t the end of the world.

That said, the question is where will he play in the meantime? If he plays in the KHL, it really won’t matter, because he’ll be playing in one of the best hockey leagues in the world.

But what if he has to play in a lesser league?

In terms of talent, he clearly deserves to play in the KHL. But the problem is, he could be under pressure to sign a contract extension… or he could get cut from SKA and play at a lower level.

And that, let’s just say, won’t do the Habs any favors if it happens. Kent Hughes talked about it yesterday… and Arpon Basu (The Athletic) reported it.

If he [Ivan Demidov] doesn’t play in the KHL, we’ll see what our options are. They’re probably not as good as playing in St. Petersburg. – Kent Hughes

In his text, Basu mentions that if the Habs learn that the prospect will play in the KHL, there’s no problem. However, if not, the club hopes that SKA will do as they did with Matvei Michkov: let him out of his contract.

It’s not guaranteed, but it’s the Habs’ plan.

The idea is a realistic one, since if Demidov doesn’t make the KHL and then has to leave, SKA might as well have the money to compensate for his departure rather than play him in junior.

After all, while playing at too low a level wouldn’t be the end of the world for Demidov, let’s just say it’s not optimal. For a guy who’s going to be so important to the Flannel, putting him in the best possible conditions would be… ideal, of course.

But that’s a problem for the future and for management. People who aren’t involved in the matter can only rejoice at seeing such a player belong to the Habs.

Juraj Slafkovsky, for example, said he had been in contact with him and had seen his highlights. So he knows what to expect and is excited about the prospect of playing with him one day.


– The Habs will decide if Slaf will go to the Olympic qualifiers next month.

– For the Slovak, the eight-year contract is more important than the $7.6 million per year.

– Taxes, not as big a factor as you’d think for field hockey players.

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