Connect with us

News

Dirty Bird: IIHF Suspends Kuznetsov for Cocaine (Updated)

Published

on

Washington Capitals forward Evgeny Kuznetsov has received a four-year ban by the IIHF for use of a banned substance during the 2019 World Championships. According to the IIHF press release the substance was cocaine and was found in samples which were collected during the 2019 World Championships in May.

Cocaine is violation of World Anti-Doping Code Article 2.1. Kuznetsov did not request additional tests of his B-sample. His suspension will conclude in June 2023. Earlier this summer, a video surfaced of Kuznetsov sitting near two lines of white powder in a hotel room. The NHL and Washington Capitals accepted Kuznetsov’s explanation and called the matter, “formally closed.”

“While I have never taken illegal drugs in my life and career, I would like to publicly apologize to the Capitals, my teammates, our fans and everyone else for putting myself in a bad situation,” Kuznetsov said via a statement in May.

Kuznetsov, 27, scored perhaps the biggest goal in Washington history when his tally eliminated their arch-rival Pittsburgh Penguins in a Game 6 overtime of the 2018 Round Two series. The goal ended the Penguins two-year Stanley Cup championship reign and propelled the Capitals to their first Stanley Cup win. Kuznetsov also earned praise and derision for his “Dirty Bird’ goal celebration during the championship run.

It is unclear if Kuznetsov will face a suspension in the NHL. He will likely be contacted by the NHL Substance Abuse program, though such matters are typically private. Last season, the Russian winger scored  72 points (21g, 51a) in 76 games.

UPDATE: Statement from Bill Daly, Deputy NHL Commissioner

Per NHL Media Relations:

“We have been fully briefed by the IIHF with respect to the positive test result and related international sanction that has been imposed on WashingtonCapitals’ Player Evgeny Kuznetsov.

“Unlike the IIHF, cocaine is not considered a performance enhancing drug and is therefore not a Prohibited Substance under the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program.  Instead, it is considered a drug of abuse that is tested for and for which intervention, evaluation and mandatory treatment can occur in appropriate cases.

“Here, we understand that Mr. Kuznetsov has voluntarily sought help through the education and counseling program provided for in the NHL and NHLPA collective bargaining agreement and has agreed to a regular testing protocol relating to his involvement with that program.

“Mr. Kuznetsov has also agreed to an in-person meeting with Commissioner Gary Bettman to discuss his situation and review his conduct prior to the start of Training Camp preceding the 2019-20 season. We intend to reserve further comment on any additional actions that may or may not be taken with respect to today’s announcement (disciplinary or otherwise) pending the completion of the Commissioner’s meeting with Mr. Kuznetsov.”

Subscribe to PHN+

Pittsburgh Hockey Now Editor-in-Chief, formerly 93.7 The Fan, Sportsnet Hockey Tonight, NHL Home Ice. Catch Dan tweeting @theDanKingerski and the official @pghhockeynow account.

8 Comments
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
8 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
BIG B
BIG B
2 years ago

So now we know why he does the dirty bird–To get high as a kite.
I miss the Caps i miss OVI its lonely doin coke
And I think it’s gonna be a long long time
‘Til touchdown brings me ’round again to find
I’m not the man they think I am at home
Oh, no, no, no.
I’m the DIRTY BIRD.

I am sure if he was a Pen’s player the Cap’s fans would on twitter blaming Sid so i say what kind of Captain is Ovi to let this happen?

Gary Church
Gary Church
2 years ago

This is to hard to believe??? Suspended for 4 yrs.??? Just can’t be true. I condone the use of drugs by anyone, but 4 yrs.??? Has he been caught before and was he suspended??? Someone must know what is going on, or not.

Hatrick Pornqvist
Hatrick Pornqvist
2 years ago

So that overtime goal obviously shouldn’t count and we get the Stanley Cup. It’s only fair.

Matt Luda
Matt Luda
2 years ago

The NHL must to do what is fair and right — take away the 2017 Cup from the Capitals because of an illegal player and declare no winner that year. Which means the Pens are three-peat champs by default. #JustDoIt

DC Penguins Fan
DC Penguins Fan
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Luda

As an added bonus, all the Caps names will be removed from the Cup including the name of That Punk Wilson

Matt Luda
Matt Luda
2 years ago

Make that the 2018 Cup, of course.

Hatrick Pornqvist
Hatrick Pornqvist
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Luda

Somebody already took the cup away from them in ‘17. He’s a goaltender for Vegas now.

Josh
Josh
2 years ago

I’ve been critical of this site in the past, several times…and for good reason. All of which I hope that I have fully explained in whatever post I was making at the time. However there is no need for an explanation on this post, nor are my comments in any way negative today because I’ve got to give MAJOR PROPS for the BEST HEADLINE to a story EVER! Simply PERFECT! That stupid dirty bird crap was SOOO ridiculous and annoying. It always made me wonder why he did something that has nothing to do with the team or player, was… Read more »

Join PHN Extra!

Join PHN+ today for exclusive content from Dan and Shelly plus a completely Google ad-free experience.

PHN+

Or enter your email below to sign-up for our mailing list.

Thank you!

Something went wrong.

No thanks. I don't want.