Flyers winger Nik Zherdev, who can become an unrestricted free agent on July 1, was arrested in Russia for an incident with his wife, according to the Russian newspaper MK.

The newspaper said Zherdev smashed the Bentley she was driving with a metal rod and threatened her. The incident reportedly took place outside the restaurant where they had eaten.

The newspaper said witnesses heard him shouting threats to his wife.

Another newspaper, Sovietsky Sport, interviewed the restaurant's manager, who said security guards did not witness any incident.

MK reported that police were "investigating" the wife's "complaint about the threat of murder. However, in the opinion of the officers of the law, there are not enough grounds to hold the hockey player responsible for this charge, because the athlete apparently doesn't have reasons to wish death to his wife."

The Flyers said they would not comment on the matter, and Zherdev's agent, Jay Grossman, was not immediately available.

"We are aware of the reports, but until we have spoken to Nikolay and have more information, we will not comment," general manager Paul Holmgren said.

Zherdev, known as a loner, scored 16 goals in 56 games this season. He is not expected to be offered another contract by the Flyers.

   (more to come)

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