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Semin's Agent Talks

Alexander Semin's agent, Mark Gandler, discusses his client being booted from Russia's world championship team for arriving late to training camp on Monday in this story.

Gandler is quoted as saying there was a misunderstanding and that the punishment does not fit the crime.

My take? Kicking a guy off the team for showing up a few hours late does seem a bit harsh. But, to my knowledge, everyone else showed up on time.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  April 18, 2007; 6:00 PM ET
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Next: Another Take on the Semin Situation


Interesting story. Hey, the Russians loss is fine with me. Seems like a simple communication problem has been blown way out of proportion. Like that's something new for the Russsians??? I bet they'll take him back.

Posted by: kenhockey | April 18, 2007 6:29 PM | Report abuse

i guess they are just trying to prove a point, who knows maybe its what semin needs to get his act together.

also, the caps HAVE to get drury this summer, this guy is money in the playoffs and we need a guy like him to show the young guys the right way to get there. i dont care how much it costs, he needs to be option 1 on july 1

Posted by: Mike P | April 18, 2007 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Pieces are all drama queens. Something very dramatic is always happening and its always someone elses fault, and thats why they need to borrow money from you.

Posted by: begone you silly fish! | April 18, 2007 11:33 PM | Report abuse

Yet everyone else made it one the correct day, even the guy that he plays with in washington and hangs out with all the time.
"Hey Sasha, the Worlds should be fun. What are you doing first?"
"Oh, i'm going back home for a few days. Then i fly in on Thursday night."
"Practice is Thursday, noon."
"Oh snap! I better schedule accordingly."

Posted by: Kerplunk | April 18, 2007 11:38 PM | Report abuse

There is somethign very weird about this whole situation. Thanks for all of your work on this Tarik. Hopefully we can get a clear picture sometime soon.

Posted by: EricS | April 19, 2007 12:17 AM | Report abuse

When Russians are involved - logic goes out the window.

Posted by: GoBucks9 | April 19, 2007 12:19 AM | Report abuse

I have to agree, this all does seem really odd.

I dont want to comment on Semin's punishment because I cant help but feel that someone is smudging the truth in this situation.

But I do think that the team is going to miss Semin's skill.

Posted by: LB | April 19, 2007 2:59 AM | Report abuse

I've heard stories about what it's like for hockey players in Russia (rude, rough, even violent treatment), and from what I understand it's a completely different world when compared to North American or Western European hockey.

Having read Semin's agent's POV on the situation, especially his description of the timeline, it seems to be in synch with other stories I've heard. It's also worth pointing out that considering the circumstances of Semin's move to the NHL, the Russians might have an axe to grind with him. Smells a bit like retribution to me now that I've heard both sides - i.e. that Nemchinov was looking for any petty excuse he could find to take a swing at Sasha.

I'll give the kid the benefit of the doubt. I can imagine how crossing Siberia even by plane could be a logistical nightmare.

Posted by: HolyOlie | April 19, 2007 7:23 AM | Report abuse

I'm not upset; keeps him off the ice, limiting his chance for injury. Doesn't bother me. Maybe he'll become hungrier because of this. Maybe he'll mature.

Or he can become bitter and do the same thing to the caps...

We'll have to wait and see.

Posted by: Go Skins Go | April 19, 2007 7:56 AM | Report abuse

I've been reading all the Russian interviews.. Its just bad timing. I think the new Russian head coach is a good fellow, professional, and he's trying hard to change the mentality over there, to get everybody - players, media and even various sports officials to approach things professionally. It looks like the Russian coaching staff went overboard with Semin to make their point, but its easy to see where they are coming from, because Russian hockey has been a mess for such a long time. In a way, Semin is paying for years of others' past transgressions.

As far as others being there on time, true, but considering Russian logistics and less-than-perfect organization, it seems that a fine would have been a much more logical solution.

Anyway, one very positive thing so far (esp. for Russia) is that both sides have done their best to stay civil. Semin, in particular, has refused to criticize the coaches in interviews, although he's obviously extremely upset, a lot of people in Russia want the coach's head for unjustly dropping one of the best players, and the journalists are doing their best to get him to throw some dirt.. He's earning the respect of a lot of people for how he's handling the situation.. but it sucks, he is a good guy.

Posted by: Vlad | April 19, 2007 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Vlad -- I think you are spot on.

Posted by: Tarik | April 19, 2007 9:01 AM | Report abuse

I heard Semin had obligations to the US Military.

Posted by: eric | April 19, 2007 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Semin is obviously a cancer. We must crucify him in the name of all that is good with Capitals hockey. Shame on that evil GMGM for drafting this guy in 2002. He should have known that 5 years later he would flake on his Russian team in a meaningless international competition.

Posted by: Graham | April 19, 2007 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Good points, Vlad. I'm interested in hearing more about the itinerary bit that Semin's agent mentioned. If the Russian's want to be taken more seriously, by both players and international org's then they need to start putting their best foot forward. Telling somone in March when they have to be somewhere in April and not following up with something in writing is pretty hackish. Even college glee clubs write up itenerarys for their members. Granted, everyone else made it on time, and Semin does have a history of, ehem, not making it at the appointed hour, but word of mouth exchanges detailing schedules isn't very professional.

Then again, it sounds like Russian hockey to me.

Posted by: Kerplunk | April 19, 2007 1:29 PM | Report abuse

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