World Cup of Hockey 2016: No Kings in Morning Wave of Team Announcements, Voynov May Be Banned
LA's backups and prospects won't be representing their European countries. Hopefully, Slava Voynov won't be either.
Hey, it's World Cup of Hockey announcement day. This is the next time we're going to see the Los Angeles Kings in any sort of competitive capacity. Seems so far away.
Anyway, after the preliminary roster announcements gave us four Kings who will be representing their respective countries/continents/entities, we're waiting on the remaining members of each of the eight teams to be announced. There was no expectation that any members of the organization would make the rosters of Teams Russia, Sweden, Finland, or the Czech Republic, though Jhonas Enroth had an outside shot at nabbing Sweden's third goaltender spot (it went to Robin Lehner of the Ottawa Senators).
Rosters will be posted here over the course of the day, though we'll alert you if any additional Kings make a squad. Marian Gaborik is the most likely player to join Anze Kopitar, Jonathan Quick, Drew Doughty, and Jeff Carter at the World Cup, but players such as Jake Muzzin, Tyler Toffoli, Dustin Brown, and Alec Martinez have the smallest of outside chances. The remaining four announcements (Team Canada, Team USA, Team North America, and Team Europe) will take place this afternoon.
Unfortunately, the morning's announcements have been overshadowed by Team Russia's indication that they intend to include Slava Voynov on their roster. The former Kings defenseman pled no contest to corporal injury to a spouse last year, and after two months in jail and additional time in the custody of U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, he "self-deported" to Russia.
The Kings' missteps in dealing with Slava Voynov -- and the ensuing attempts to cast their inaction in a positive light after Voynov made a contract termination unnecessary -- showed just how far the team and the league have to come in addressing incidents of domestic and sexual assault. (Content warning for discussion of said assault, but we wrote about that further back in September.) The good news is that, at the very least, the NHL and the NHL Players' Organization appear to be addressing this now rather than hoping for an outside resolution. Though KHL players are eligible for this event, the World Cup of Hockey is run by the NHL and the NHLPA, and they appear to have final say on whether Voynov will participate.
Told that NHLPA and NHL are jointly "reviewing" the matter of Voynov's eligibility to play in World Cup.— Larry Brooks (@NYP_Brooksie) May 27, 2016
Statement from #NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly today on Slava Voynov being named to Russia's World Cup roster: pic.twitter.com/uJ0bcy5Bux— SportsCentre (@SportsCentre) May 27, 2016
We can only hope the NHL follows through on their intention to exclude Voynov, who remains indefinitely suspended by the league, from Team Russia. Otherwise, this is all just lip service.