Collectable Kuzy and Latta

Photo: @kimipavlik

It may have been a day off in the hockey schedule from games but two members of the Washington Capitals had plans for the evening of February 23, 2016.  Evgeny Kuznetsov and Michael Latta appeared at the Collectable Heroes store at Fair Oaks Mall to sign autographs and pose for pictures with fans, with a limit of one apiece.


Photo: @LaurieDorgan

Originally, Kuznetsov was to appear at that venue on January 30, along with Peter Bondra.  However, a conflict developed in his schedule – he was selected for the All Star Game to be played in Nashville, Tennessee that weekend.  So, Kuznetsov was rescheduled for nearly a month later.

The autograph session was scheduled for 6:00 pm through 8:00 pm.  I got to the store around 5:40 pm to pick up my pre-ordered tickets and pictures suitable for autographing and noticed the lines of fans seeking autographs was already snaking from the Collectable Heroes store through the neighboring hallway that led to the Macy’s store and back through that hallway.

Kuzy-autoFans must have been waiting there for over an hour before the start of the session.   When the Latta and Kuznetsov arrived, with an escort, the entire contingent of fans cheered.  When we got inside the store, we saw that Kuznetsov was seated at one large table along one wall and Latta was seated at a smaller table on the opposite wall.  Kuznetsov generally signed the requisite item and then stood up to pose for a picture with each fan.  Latta would sign the item but was generally seated during his photo ops.

It was great to see them both, even if I had met them both on previous occasions.  I told Kuzy I enjoyed reading his “Players Tribune” article from earlier this year and he thanked me.  I said to Latta that they should do a reality show on he and his roommates/friends, Tom Wilson and Andre Burakovsky and that their Bahama vacation and visit with the dolphins should be called “Brobeans in the Bahamas”.

There were many items suitable for autographing available, including pictures of various sizes and pucks.

While there, I learned that Andre Burakovsky will be doing a signing at the same venue on Wednesday March 16 from 6:30-8:30 pm.  According to the flyer, other players are to be added.  One of the store employees hints that it will be “someone good”.

By Diane Doyle

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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