NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said the league isn’t anticipating any significant issues related to Russian players trying to obtain work visas for the 2022-23 NHL season.
“We’re expecting them all to be good – and in North America,” Daly told ESPN’s Emily Kaplan at the NHL’s European Media Tour held on Wednesday in Paris, France.
“That whole situation is difficult, but kind of out of our hands. So just like with the pandemic, and with many issues, we looked to the governing agencies to make those decisions. And we played by the rules.”
Washington Capitals forward prospect Bogdan Trineyev was one of the first Russian players to navigate the murky travel issues following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Trineyev, who was recalled to the Hershey Bears in May, documented his travel from Russia this past spring in a recent interview.
“Didn’t take long. With only one change – through Turkey. Pretty convenient these days. As for the visa, I did it in Georgia, spent a week in a hotel,” said Trineyev. “I flew to Washington, and from there immediately to Hershey.”
However, some of the more well-known Russian players reapplying for visas have encountered significant challenges. Minnesota Wild superstar Kirill Kaprizov was reportedly denied entry to the United States twice this summer before successfully returning earlier in August.
The Athletic’s Michael Russo and Dan Robson reported in July that several European players played without work visas this past season after the NHL negotiated an exemption with the U.S. government due to the pandemic.