Heika’s blog posted this as a rumor, but TSN says it’s pretty much official and that Sergei Zubov will be heading back to Russia to play with St. Petersburg of the KHL.
This makes sense, in a way. Zubie would be going back home (even though he had a few altercations with Russia over the years), and the KHL might be less pressure on him in case he does spend most of next season injured. The doctors and medical staff aren’t nearly as talented as they are in the NHL, so I hope that he doesn’t run into any serious medical problems because the staff there might not be knowledgeable enough to deal with it.
Even though Zubie spent most of the last two seasons injured, I can remember many excellent moments from earlier in his career before he started experiencing injury problems. I remember him and the old Darryl Sydor during the Cup days, and Zubie quarterbacking the power play with the likes of Modano, Hull, Arnott, and a very young Morrow. It will be weird for him to NOT be on the team. Although he spent most of the last two seasons off the ice, it was always somewhat comforting to know that he was still a part of the team.
When he came for the playoffs in 2008, he seemed to have a lot left to give if only he could stay healthy. Yes, there were the two wonderful presents he gave to Patrick Marleau while the Sharks were short-handed, but there was also the amazing spin-around pass that landed right on Modano’s stick and easily found its way into the net. That is my favorite Zubov moment of recent memory.
If this is true, we will miss you Zubie. Best of luck in Russia. I hope you wow everyone with your crazy Ivans.