Last weekend Islanders General Manager Garth Snow reportedly refused to allow defensive prospect Anton Klementyev to attend training camp for the Russian national team at the request of the KHL. This was done to protest the previous denial by the KHL to allow prospect Kirill Petrov from attending Islanders camp in years past as well as his recent demotion.
Citing Petrov’s three year contract and the lack of a transfer agreement, Snow was using Anton Klementyev as bait in an attempt to get Petrov out of his contract and under Islanders development NOW as opposed to when his contract is over. Petrov was recently taken out of the elite league and placed in a lower division, creating concern over the forwards development.
According to Newsday’s Katie Strang’s Twitter feed today, Anton Klementyev was granted permission to attend his homeland’s camp and in return the KHL may allow Petrov out of his contract.
This was a very bold and strong maneuver by Snow, who selected the highly ranked Petrov in the third round in 2008. Petrov had slipped to the third round due to concerns over the lack of a transfer agreement with the KHL. Petrov has maintained his desire to play in the NHL ever since.
Petrov has been an intriguing prospect to me for quite some time now and had the size and skill the Islanders need at forward. if he can come over and play in Bridgeport now – he may be NHL ready by next season if his skills shine as much as I hope they do.
Garth Snow may be setting a new precedent in terms of how to deal with the KHL, despite the lack of a transfer agreement should this work. I guess that MBA really comes in handy!