Flyers goaltending prospect Ivan Fedotov has been detained in St. Petersburg, Russia, for an alleged evasion of military service, according to a report from the Russian news outlet Fontanka.
Fedotov, 25, signed an entry-level contract with the Flyers on May 7 after leading CSKA Moscow to the Gagarin Cup last season and the Russian Olympic Committee to a silver medal at the 2022 Beijing Olympics. CSKA Moscow is owned by the Russian government and its members are officially considered military personnel. In the past, the team was affiliated with the Soviet Army and known as the Red Army Team.
According to the report, Fedotov was picked up on Friday by operatives of the Russian criminal investigation department and taken to the military registration and enlistment office. This came after there was an earlier report, also from Fontanka, that operatives had taken up positions at various St. Petersburg locations in an attempt to find and detain Fedotov.
Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher released the following statement on Friday afternoon regarding Fedotov: “We’re aware of the reports and are investigating the situation. We have no further comment at this time.”
The speculation is that Fedotov’s termination of his contract with CSKA could be construed as a violation of Russia’s Criminal Code because he is officially considered military personnel. CSKA’s motivation would seem to be to hold on to its top goaltender for next season and maybe beyond.
The Flyers previously said they were optimistic that Fedotov would come over to North America for the 2022-23 season and compete for an NHL role alongside Carter Hart.
In addition to leading CSKA to the Gagarin Cup, the 6-foot-7 Fedotov was a finalist for the KHL’s goaltender of the year award in 2021-22. In his only season at CSKA, Fedotov went 14-10-2 with a 2.00 goals-against average and a .919 save percentage. In the playoffs he was even better, compiling a 16-6 record with a 1.85 GAA and .937 save percentage.
Note: We will provide further updates when we have them.