Lubomir Visnovsky is a member of the New York Islanders, even if he doesn’t want to be one.
He tried to block the Summer 2012 deal from the Anaheim Ducks to Brooklyn-to-be, and failed. Now, the defenseman is trying to remain in KHL despite the NHL lockout ending, defying the League, the Islanders and international hockey rules in the process.
Visnovsky issued a statement through Sheehy last week expressing his desire to remain in Europe. The Islanders can suspend Visnovsky for failing to report.
The KHL and NHL have an agreement that all players with NHL contracts are obligated to return to the NHL once the lockout is lifted. Visnovsky's case might be the first legitimate test of the sincerity of the agreement.
"The KHL has repeatedly said that they will not permit him to play, so I guess we will have to see what happens," deputy commissioner Bill Daly said when reached via email.
The latest twist: According to Sports.ru reporter Igor Eronko, Visnovsky told his KHL team Slovan’s website that he intends to reach an agreement with the Islanders to remain in the KHL and believes there is no agreement between the KHL and the NHL so he could technically play for Slovan. If you believes these two statements are slightly contradictory, that’s because they are.
Visnovsky is traveling with Slovan on Monday, as the team’s Facebook page had images of him on the team bus.
Taking him off the cap due to suspension would bring the Islanders down to around $45.37 million against the cap, with the floor established at $44 million this season.
The bigger issue: The Islanders, like, need a defenseman like Lubomir Visnovsky on their blue line in a big, big way.