Ivan Telegin was supposed to head east this week, but it now appears he could be heading a lot further east than first thought.
© Canadian Press file photo
On Sunday, the Winnipeg Jets suspended the 21-year-old Russian forward for refusing to report to the American Hockey League's St. John's IceCaps.
In a statement, the Jets said Telegin’s failure to report was for “personal reasons,” but there was no further elaboration.
"He’s been suspended. That's the story. There's nothing more," said IceCaps head coach Keith McCambridge Sunday when asked if he could provide any details about the suspension or comment on reports Telegin may be headed back to Russia.
IceCaps general manager and Jets assistant GM Craig Heisinger,who is in St. John’s, also didn’t go further than to say Telegin had been suspended.
The 21-year-old Telegin had been officially assigned to the IceCaps on Tuesday.
An excellent skater who was considered among the Jets better prospects, Telegin made his pro debut with St. John’s in 2012-13, appearing in 34 games, with three goals and four assists. However, a concussion suffered in January ended his season, then post-concussion symptoms curtailed much of his off-season training activity.
The six-foot-three, 200-pound native of Novokuznetsk, Russia, did participate in the Jets' rookie camp earlier this month and played in three NHL pre-season games for Winnipeg, registering an assist.
A fourth-round draft pick of the Atlanta Thrashers in 2010, Telegin is entering the second year of a three-year entry-level contract with the Jets, one tha that calls for an almost $700,000 annual salary in the NHL and $65,000 in the AHL.
Sunday’s happenings fueled plenty of speculation in social media that Telegin may be looking to play for a team in the Russian-based Kontinental Hockey League. However, the NHL and KHL have an understanding — although not binding — that the leagues will honour each other’s player contracts.