Remember Vadim Shipachyov?
The Russian forward was the biggest free agent signing last offseason for the Vegas Golden Knights, coming over from the KHL, where he was one of the league's top players. Shipachyov and Vegas were seemingly a great match, as he was supposed to add skill to a lineup expected to be short on it after being built through the expansion draft.
Suffice to say, that's not how things went.
Opening night came, and he wasn't there, having been sent to the AHL for what the club said weren't performance reasons – simply a paper move given Shipachyov's waiver exempt status. After a brief call-up and subsequent re-assignment to the AHL a few days later, Shipachyov and Vegas were officially feuding – and the result was a voluntary retirement from the AHL for Shipachyov, who went back to Russia.
Well, Vegas Golden Knights blog The Sin Bin dug up and translated an interview Shipachyov gave to a Russian site, and he was clear about his discontent with just about every part of his NHL experience.
I forgot everything that happened last season, like a terrible dream.
Well that's certainly not an encouraging start. Let's see what he thinks about Jack Adams Trophy winner Gerard Gallant.
Yes, we constantly talked with the head coach, with an assistant. But you know how it is in America. “Vadim, we are satisfied with everything, then you are growing great, everything is great.” And then they tell me that I’m not needed. (In Russia) they tell you what’s unhappy, they’ll say it in person, and you start working on some things.
Well, hey, he couldn't have hated living in Vegas, right?
In Vegas, it’s hard to live. You can come here for a week for fun, but it’s impossible to live. We rented a house in a good, I thought, neighborhood, but there’s nothing there, and there is no one. You go out into the street, it’s empty, as if you live alone in this village. Once I took the children to the water park – I had to go through the casino. So I had to clamp my nose with my hands so that they would not inhale thick tobacco smoke. Well, yes, there is the Strip, it is possible to walk along it one way and the other. So what? Gambling does not interest me at all, and there’s nothing more there.
There's a lot more in the Sin Bin story, which is worth reading in full. As for Shipachyov, he ended the season as a healthy scratch in the KHL, while Vegas made the Stanley Cup Finals. Strange how things work out sometimes.
Follow 1st Ohio Battery