Evgeni Malkin contract: Stars deny tampering allegation

Justin K. Aller

The Dallas Stars have released comment regarding the reported Evgeni Malkin contract offer.

The Dallas Stars undertook an aggressive approach to reshaping their team this summer by adding players like Tyler Seguin, Sergei Gonchar and Shawn Horcoff. On Monday night, that statement was amplified when the translated version of a Russian language interview with Evgeni Malkin's father surfaced tying Dallas as a suitor for the superstar's services this past summer.

Only problem is Malkin has never been an unrestricted free agent. If his father is accurate in stating that the Stars tabled a more lucrative offer than the $76 million he ultimately received from the Pittsburgh Penguins on June 13, then manager Jim Nill and the Stars organization were in violation of the NHL's anti-tampering legislation.

On Tuesday afternoon, Nill released a statement regarding the matter. To no surprise, he denied the accuracy of the claim, via Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News:

"We have seen the reports that have surfaced out of Russia claiming that we have tampered and they are completely untrue.  The Dallas Stars organization respects and adheres to all rules and regulations set forth by the National Hockey League and any report that claims otherwise is false."

Malkin's agent, J.P. Barry of CAA Sports, did not comment on the validity of a Stars offer but did release a statement regarding his client's desire to play in Pittsburgh. The translated interview also contained a passage discussing Malkin's potential interest in playing for the Montreal Canadiens or New York Rangers.

To no surprise, Barry denied such an interest and expressed how smoothly negotiations went with Pittsburgh, via Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:

"The negotiations with Pittsburgh went very smoothly," Barry said. "Ray Shero, David Morehouse, Ron Burkle and Mario Lemieux showed a willingness throughout to find a fair structure for both sides. Evgeni was very pleased that this negotiation was concluded amicably as his wishes were always to remain in Pittsburgh."

Rossi also writes that the NHL will not be pursuing tampering charges against the Stars.

If the league isn't going to investigate the matter further, then the story is essentially dead. Considering the source of the information came from a player's father through a written foreign language report (plausible deniability), the potential for more information leaking is slim-to-none.

Now, the Stars can join the Los Angeles Kings as clubs that Malkin could have played for in an alternate reality.

More in the NHL:

Longform: Hockey's first African-American superstar?

Video breakdown: Arnott’s 2000 Cup winner

Full Free Agency coverage

Full 2013 Draft coverage

The best of our hockey network

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.