Dynamo Moscow president Arkadi Rotenberg made news over the weekend when he said Alex Ovechkin "wasn't necessary" for his reigning KHL champions, should the Washington Capitals star head to Russia during an NHL lockout.
That's after Dynamo GM Andrei Safronov told SovSport on Aug. 23 the following:
"To invite Alex, we need to negotiate for him to be like a flag for the club. But to pay crazy salary is wrong. It's better to invest that money in the [Dynamo] youth sports academy."
Why make those statements? Rotenberg told SovSport his reasons, and told them to Ovechkin's mother as well:
"I think we don't need Ovechkin. I even spoke to his mother. She called when she didn't understand the article.
"His mom clarified: 'Should he play for Dynamo for free and you will finance the youth sports academy with that money?' But the point is in something else. When Safronov asked me about Ovechkin, I told him 'We will not try to outbid for players. It's better to spend that three million [dollars] that they would spend [on Ovechkin] on children. They are our future.'
"Alex's mom asked: 'And if he wants to play for another team where he would be paid differently?' I replied: 'Fair enough. But personally I am not prepared to spend money on it.' "
In Russia or in the NHL, it's all about the money.