Scout “Washington”: now a fan of “Avant-garde”? Nikolishin’s son moves to Omsk
Aug 21, 2023 10:30 am UTC Audio Version: Your browser does not support the audio element.
Ivan’s conflict with “Amur” ended in a complete break in labor relations.
Unofficially, but it seems to be a fact: Avangard agreed with Amur on the transfer of Ivan Nikolishin. In the opposite direction, from Omsk to Khabarovsk, VHL defender Kirill Spitsenko and MHL forward Daniil Fesenko should continue.
Who else is looking for work:
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The relationship between Amur and Nikolishin intensified last spring. The forward ended the season injured and, when the team failed to reach the playoffs, she resumed her treatment. According to several experts, the club insisted that the player use the standard KHL insurance, but Ivan intended to go to a German clinic where, unlike Russian competitors, they managed to develop a successful practice for solving such problems.
Amur refused to pay for the rehab right away, promising the hockey player that he would make up for the costs after the fact. When Nikolishin handed over the checks for the operation to the accounting department, the club changed its position and declared that he was ready to pay off the debt only after Ivan signed a new contract.
From the bank of the Amur, everything looks different. The club’s version was presented by general manager Vadim Pokotilo: “Yes, we have seen these articles and blogs from journalists. They have caused nothing but confusion. They did not immediately comment on these speculations in order to give Ivan the opportunity to make the right decision without pressure. But now it is already possible and necessary to clarify the situation.
General view of the policy of “Amur”:
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The club had neither the right nor the opportunity to pay for Ivan’s operation in Germany. We offered to pay for it in any Russian clinic at the player’s choice. He decided to go abroad and issued a written waiver of any claim against the club in this regard. The document is in our archive.
The statements of respected journalists that the club promised to pay for the operation later with the checks and other documents provided by Iván have nothing to do with reality.
Asked what will happen next, Pokotilo replied: “In any case, we will only act in the interests of the club. First of all, this concerns the rumors that have recently appeared about the exchange of Nikolishin to another club. I cannot say that there is a stir in this regard.
Acting in the interest of the club led to the club being left without last season’s top scorer. Nikolishin scored 42 (17 + 25) points, 30% more than his closest pursuer. In return, Amur does not receive the most promising striker in the Omsk system (last season Fesenko had only 14 points), as well as the defender who, at the age of 23, has only 10 matches in the KHL.
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At the same time, Avangard has a chance to finally resolve the issue with the central axis of attack. Due to the cap adjustment, the Siberians abandoned Alex Broadhurst and then became victims of the Korban Knight decision, being left with an empty channel. For a couple of days, Valentin Pyanov turned out to be the center of the first link, who even in Siberia coped with this tense role. But then the Hawks filled a vacancy at center (according to Ryan Spooner), and now, and the second.
Of course, Nikolishin Jr. is a much less sophisticated fighter than Knight, and he will likely start the season in the second three. But Spooner, too sharp for attack, may not fit into the company of Bush and Tkachev, so Avangard’s coaches will have to look for alternatives and Nikolishin will be the first candidate to replace the Canadian.
Ivan is 27 years old, has just under two hundred matches in the KHL regular season and not a single one in the playoffs, but he is an excellent player who can make up for gaps in skill with the amount of character and efficiency. The Avangard management team fulfilled their task and, albeit at the cost of colossal manpower, figured out how to fill the top 6. The only shame is that this top seems too soft – among the five players who will definitely start in the two first links, only Spooner is taller than 180 cm. In this regard, it is especially interesting to watch Omsk in matches, say, with CSKA and Ak Bars, a lot of big guys.
But Omsk has a big fan. Ivan is the son of world champion and Washington scout Andrey Nikolishin. How many Avangard games will you see this season?