Flyers' prospect detained in Russia for allegedly dodging military draft

Flyers prospect Ivan Fedotov has been detained by Russian authorities after suspicions of
Flyers prospect Ivan Fedotov has been detained by Russian authorities after suspicions of "dodging the Russian army." (Getty Images)

Netminder Ivan Fedotov has been arrested by Russian authorities who allege he evaded military service and illegally broke his contract with CSKA Moscow in the Kontinental Hockey League. A goalie prospect for the Philadelphia Flyers, Fedotov is being detained over suspicions of evading the Russian army by signing with an NHL team, a move the CSKA Moscow management reportedly did not appreciate.

“We learned this information from Fontanka. We are sure that the competent authorities will sort out this situation,” Moscow’s CSKA said in a statement following Fedotov’s arrest, according to Euro Weekly News.

Fedotov was allegedly met by Russian officials when he exited an arena in St. Petersburg and “invited him to go to the military registration and enlistment office,” per a report in the Russian online newspaper Fontanka.

Paula Chertok of Euro Weekly News notes that Fedotov could face a potential violation of article 328 of the Criminal Code, “evasion from military or alternative civilian service”, for which he could face up to two years in prison. It is also believed that Fedotov will be forced to enlist in the Russian army, and possibly even to participate Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

After several years in the KHL, Fedotov was looking to break into the NHL after an impressive 2021-22 KHL season with CSKA Moscow. He started in 26 games and had a 14-10-2 record, a .919 save percentage, and two shutouts before a stellar performance in the Gagarin Cup playoffs, with a .937 save percentage as he helped lead CSKA to the championship.

Fedotov announced back in April that he will leave Moscow’s CSKA hockey club to join the Flyers. On May 7, Fedotov signed a contract with the Flyers, agreeing on a one-year deal with a $925,000 cap hit. The team had originally selected him in the 2015 NHL Draft in the seventh round.

Bill Meltzer, a content manager for Flyers Alumni Association, also tweeted about the detainment on Friday.

“Working on getting more information on the reported detainment of Ivan Fedotov in Russia for ‘draft dodging.’ This is something that could affect a lot more than just the Flyers goalie prospect.”

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