It appears Sergei Fedorov's time with the Washington Capitals has come to an end. But his next team won't be an NHL rival. According to a report in a Russian paper, he's heading back to his homeland to play for the KHL's Metallurg Magnitogorsk.
They're very good.
The Sport Express reported (and Puck Daddy's super-sleuth Sean Leahy translated) that Fedorov could soon sign a two-year deal for $3.8 million per season.
There was no guarantee that the Caps would bring Fedorov back for another season, and not many teams would be willing to shell out about $4 million a year for the soon-to-be 40-year-old in today's salary-cap era, especially with talk of the cap actually decreasing this coming season. So it appears that Fedorov is taking the money while he can get it, and returning to his homeland in the process.
It's a similar move to the one Jaromir Jagr made before last season, signing with the KHL instead of taking less money in the NHL. Of course, by the end of the season rumors had Jagr wanting out of Russia and back in North America. Maybe he'd be willing to take a pay cut to return to the Caps down the road for a chance to play with Alex Ovechkin? Just throwing it out there...
Anyway, with Fedorov reportedly out of the picture and reports of Viktor Kozlov following suit, the number of returning members of the Southeast Division champions are dwindling. The Caps really don't want Michael Nylander back, but unfortunately no one else wants him, either. And there is sure to be an upheaval of the defense after the Pens exposed its weaknesses in their second-round series. And the logjam in goal will have to be addressed, as well, after the emergence of Simeon Varlamov.
GM George McPhee has a busy summer ahead of him...