Something to smile about? There may be, finally, light at the end of the dark tunnel for Stan Galiev. Aivis Kalnins, a KHL insider, had first reported this morning that Galiev may be close to signing with Ak Bars Kazan. Additionally, Kalnins noted that the situation with Dynamo Moscow has been resolved. Just a short while later, it was confirmed that Galiev had indeed, signed a two-year deal with Ak Bars Kazan.
Hopefully this puts to rest perhaps the darkest of moments in Galiev’s career that has been filled with high hopes and great disappointments. It should also pave the way for him to pursue his dream of playing for Team Russian in the Olympics.
Stanislav Galiev appears to be headed to AkBars in the #KHL. His situation with Dynamo Moscow has been resolved.
— Aivis Kalniņš (@July 14, 2017
After being in North America, it was clear that Galiev’s potential was high. His had a skill set that afforded him the opportunity to score just about every time he was on the ice, but after his first year here, he found himself bounced between Reading (the then-ECHL affiliate of the Capitals) and Hershey (AHL) with limited in-game time in Hershey. It was abundantly clear, though, that he did not belong in the ECHL after posting 73 points in 73 total games with the Royals over the course of two seasons and the playoffs.
With a coaching change in Hershey, he got another shot with the Bears in 2014-2015 and was impressive enough to earn his first call-up to Washington. He appeared in two games with the Caps and recorded his first NHL goal. He was also the subject of Washington’s famous rookie prank.
The following year, he earned his roster spot with the Caps, but that good news didn’t exactly pan out as Galiev would have hoped. A frequent healthy scratch, Galiev was sent to Hershey for a conditioning stint where he dazzled Bears fans with three goals in just five games before returning to Washington.
Then last summer, Galiev was sent through waivers by the Capitals. He spent the entire 2016-2017 season with the Bears. While he was productive, 40 points in 56 games, he wasn’t happy, announcing at the end of the season that he planned to return to the KHL.
Even that didn’t go as smoothly as anyone would have hoped. The KHL’s Disciplinary Committee stepped in and took action against Dynamo Moscow for not paying its players.
— KHL (@khl_eng) July 5, 2017
Galiev, whose rights were owned by the Old Dynamo Moscow entity, was left in limbo as he was not part of the discussions that took place on July 4. It appears as though there is now light at the end of the tunnel once again. Let’s just hope that, this time, there is no more darkness for a kid who has had more than his fair share of troubled times.
By Julie Beidler