Most parents of pro athletes get it. If the time ever comes that they’re interviewed about their pride and joy their job is to keep the responses as positive and as flavorless as possible. Never say anything that might inflame the home town fans or worse the employers. Unfortunately Evgeni Malkin’s dad missed the memo. Or maybe he just got a lousy translation. In an interview published today at the Russian website SovSport Vladimir Malkin offered up a couple of colorful quotes about his son and the events leading up to his re-signing with the Pittsburgh Penguins. For one he said that his son told him that “if there was ever the case where I have to leave the Penguins I would rather choose the New York Rangers or the Montreal Canadiens.” That little tidbit probably will fuel rumors for a few years and get under the skin of Pittsburgh’s supporters but honestly you can’t blame him for something that’s nothing more than a fantasy right? No matter how loyal a guy is to his team he probably was a fan of a different club when he was a kid or maybe he sees a situation that under the right circumstances he could see himself in. So Malkin has some affection for a couple of Original Six teams with rich histories and passionate fan bases. Plenty of players given the right to choose would make the same call. No real harm done there. Where it gets interesting is when Papa Malkin says that another team the Dallas Stars offered his son a contract. “You know Dallas offered him a greater deal than the Pittsburgh. And he said ‘No I do not want to go there.’ The Stars had signed Sergei Gonchar. His best friend is out there playing. Why not agree? “And Geno said he wasn’t torn about not going to Dallas. He didn’t want to change houses. ‘I’m used to Pittsburgh the city and the team’ he said.” Now the thing is this has to be some kind of misunderstanding. Malkin is currently under contract with the Penguins and the eight-year $76 million extension he signed this summer kicks in after next season. So there wasn’t a window during which the Stars could legally have talked to Malkin let alone offered him a contract.
Evgeni Malkin’s father suggests Stars tampered with Penguins property
SI | Aug 13