Where In The World Is Prokhorkin? The Battle Over His Contract

Who has the right to play Prokhorkin, the Kings or CSKA of the KHL?

There's a legal tussle going on right now between the Kings and the KHL about Nikolai Prokhorkin's contract status, but it's hard to find much information about it.

Almost all of the details we have come from Russian sources, when CSKA of the KHL learned of Prokhorkin's contract with Los Angeles in early September, and went public with its objections about it. Across the pond, our usual sources for Kings info--the team's own website, the Insider blog, and the Los Angeles Times--have been curiously silent. There was not even an announcement about his contract, though he could hardly have been assigned to Manchester without one.

So, what's going on? Here are all the details I've been able to gather, with a timeline:

  • September 3rd: Capgeek reports Prokhorkin's 3-year entry level contract with the Kings, citing one of its own sources. (Capgeek routinely breaks information this way, securing details only team sources could have. Presumably, they have a connection with someone involved in the Kings. It is not reported on their website, however.)
  • September 11th: News of the signing has spread. CSKA's coach Valery Bragin complains that he does not know where Prokhorkin is. Because of the NHL-KHL transfer agreement, he says: "I do not understand how he could have signed a contract with Los Angeles."
  • September 14th: The Kings assign Prokhorkin along with 14 other young players to the Manchester Monarchs.
  • September 19th: Russian media report the dispute over the validity of Prokhorkin's KHL contract. It's unclear what the basis of this dispute might be, but the KHL will examine the arguments on Monday. /

So there you have it. Will Prokhorkin's contract hold up as valid? Dean Lombardi and Jeff Solomon are lawyers, so we can assume they think there is some chance they can win this. However, in the absence of detailed information, we are left to wonder and wait.