#NickInEurope: Photos from Moscow & Prague

Yahoo! Sports writer Nick Cotsonika traveled to Russia and the Czech Republic to catch up with NHLers playing abroad during the lockout and to see what life was like in the KHL. Here's a photo diary of his trip, with pictures from on -- and off -- the ice. (All photos taken by Nick Cotsonika.)

Luggage cart at Moscow airport.

Luggage cart at Moscow airport. Maybe things aren't so different in Russia after all. (#NickInEurope)

NHL players as Russian dolls

NHL players as Russian dolls. (#NickInEurope)

Alex Ovechkin signs photo for a fan

Alex Ovechkin signs photo for a fan. (#NickInEurope)

KHL cheerleader: Boots and pom-poms (#NickInEurope)

KHL cheerleader: Boots and pom-poms. (#NickInEurope)

Metallurg Magnitogorsk's Evgeni Malkin at morning practice

Metallurg Magnitogorsk's Evgeni Malkin at morning practice. (#NickInEurope)

Jaromir Jagr talks to Prague media in old Flyers undershirt (#NickInEurope)

Jaromir Jagr talks to Prague media in old Flyers undershirt. (#NickInEurope)

Pavel Datsyuk in action for CSKA Moscow

Pavel Datsyuk in action for CSKA Moscow. (#NickInEurope)

Zdeno Chara during national anthem before KHL game (#NickInEurope)

Zdeno Chara during national anthem before KHL game. (#NickInEurope)

Dynamo Moscow player skates onto the ice through the "Big D"

Dynamo Moscow player skates onto the ice through the "Big D." (#NickInEurope)

Huge lineup of fans waiting for Alex Ovechkin's autograph

Huge lineup of fans waiting for Alex Ovechkin's autograph. (#NickInEurope)

Fans waiting to meet Alex Ovechkin

Fans waiting to meet Alex Ovechkin. (#NickInEurope)

Alex Ovechkin signs a young fan's jersey

Alex Ovechkin signs a young fan's jersey. (#NickInEurope)

Game night in Moscow

Game night in Moscow. (#NickInEurope)

Russian national anthem before KHL game

Russian national anthem before KHL game. (#NickInEurope)

Dynamo Moscow emblem

Dynamo Moscow emblem. (#NickInEurope)

Alex Ovechkin, bigger than life in Russia

Alex Ovechkin, bigger than life in Russia. (#NickInEurope)

Old photo of Vladislav Tretiak on the wall of Moscow arena

Old photo of Vladislav Tretiak on the wall of Moscow arena. (#NickInEurope)

Crowd celebrates goal by Dynamo Moscow

Crowd celebrates goal by Dynamo Moscow. (#NickInEurope)

Nicklas Backstrom, the other No. 99

Nicklas Backstrom, the other No. 99. (#NickInEurope)

Dynamo Moscow salutes crowd after a win (#NickInEurope)

Dynamo Moscow salutes crowd after a win. (#NickInEurope)

BMW with 1972 Summit Series tribute

BMW with 1972 Summit Series tribute. (#NickInEurope)

Russian hats for sale on the streets of Moscow

Russian hats for sale on the streets of Moscow. (#NickInEurope).

The CSKA Ice Palace

The CSKA Ice Palace. (#NickInEurope)

Pavel Datsyuk in action for CSKA Moscow

Pavel Datsyuk in action for CSKA Moscow. (#NickInEurope)

Sergei Fedorov, GM of CSKA Moscow

Sergei Fedorov, GM of CSKA Moscow. (#NickInEurope)

Retired NHL superstar Sergei Fedorov is the head manager of CSKA Moscow, the fabled Central Red Army team

Retired NHL superstar Sergei Fedorov is the head manager of CSKA Moscow, the fabled Central Red Army team. (#NickInEurope)

Everyone has a golden helmet by a framed photo of Detroit's Ilitch family in their office like Sergei Fedorov does, don't they?

Everyone has a golden helmet by a framed photo of Detroit's Ilitch family in their office like Sergei Fedorov does, don't they? (#NickInEurope)

CSKA logo

CSKA logo. (#NickInEurope)

Pavel Datsyuk in the spotlight during postgame scrum

Pavel Datsyuk in the spotlight during postgame scrum. (#NickInEurope)

Pavel Datsyuk coffee cup

Pavel Datsyuk coffee cup. (#NickInEurope)

Pavel Datsyuk on the ice for CSKA Moscow

Pavel Datsyuk on the ice for CSKA Moscow. (#NickInEurope)

Hallway to KHL dressing room

Hallway to KHL dressing room. (#NickInEurope)

Alexander Radulov coffee cup. They're not a big seller in Nashville...

Alexander Radulov coffee cup. They're not a big seller in Nashville... (#NickInEurope)

Evgeni Malkin hitting the ice for practice

Evgeni Malkin hitting the ice for practice. (#NickInEurope)

Rookie KHL coach Paul Maurice running a Metallurg Magnitogorsk practice

Rookie KHL coach Paul Maurice running a Metallurg Magnitogorsk practice. (#NickInEurope)

Two young fans waiting to meet Evgeni Malkin

Two young fans waiting to meet Evgeni Malkin. (#NickInEurope)

Evgeni Malkin gets photo taken with two young fans

Evgeni Malkin gets photo taken with two young fans. (#NickInEurope)

Paul Maurice runs a Metallurg Magnitogorsk practice as Evgeni Malkin looks on

Paul Maurice runs a Metallurg Magnitogorsk practice as Evgeni Malkin looks on. (#NickInEurope)

Metallurg Magnitogorsk's Evgeni Malkin in action

Metallurg Magnitogorsk's Evgeni Malkin in action. (#NickInEurope)

Paul Maurice behind the bench for Metallurg Magnitogorsk

Paul Maurice behind the bench for Metallurg Magnitogorsk. (#NickInEurope)