It is being reported that Capitals restricted free agent goalie Semyon Varlamov has decided to play in the KHL. Yahoo!’s Puck Daddy blogger Dmitry Chesnokov reported here that Varlamov’s Russian agent, Vyacheslav Makhrenskiy, says Varlamov will play in the KHL next season.
In three NHL seasons, Varlamov has played in 59 regular season games with a record of 30-13-12 and a 2.39 GAA with a .917 save percentage. He also has four career regular season shutouts. Varlamov went 11-9-5, 2.23 GAA, .924 save percentage in 27 regular season games for the Caps last season.
Varlamov didn’t play in any of the Capitals nine playoff games last season, but in 19 career playoff games, Varlamov is 10-9 with a 2.49 GAA and .915 Save pct. with two shutouts. The 23 year old Varlamov has had groin and knee injuries throughout his career and has missed quite a few games due to it. Varlamov’s NHL rights will remain with the Capitals for next season, usually they would stay with the Caps until Varlamov turns 27, but with a new CBA after next season, it is unknown at this time how long the Caps will keep his rights.
The Capitals were contacted and would only say through a team spokesman, “Our long standing policy is not to comment on ongoing contract negotiations with players.”
Michal Neuvirth and Braden Holtby are expected to battle for the #1 goaltending spot to start the season.