AVALANCHE

Valeri Nichushkin appears to be back in Russia based on photo

Jun 8, 2023, 3:47 PM

Colorado Avalanche forward Valeri Nichushkin appears to be back in his home country of Russia, according to a photo posted on social media by his wife.

It’s the first time Nichushkin has been seen in any public forum since mysteriously leaving the Avs before Game 3 in their Round 1 playoff series against the Kraken.

According to a police report obtained by Denver Sports, a 911 call and police body camera footage, Nichushkin had a severely intoxicated woman in his room before Game 3. The Avalanche’s team doctor called authorities, saying she needed medical attention.

Nichushkin left the hotel before the cops arrived and was taken to an airport. He missed Colorado’s final five games of the series, a 4-3 loss to the Kraken.

Head coach Jared Bednar said Nichushkin was away for personal reasons, and wouldn’t budge when taking a barrage of questions. GM Chris MacFarland echoed a similar sentiment, although he did say Nichushkin would hopefully be part of the team next season.

The NHL has made it clear there’s no investigation into the matter and the situation was handled appropriately.

It’s good to see Nichushkin out and about and back with his family. It’s unclear where he went or why his absence was so long, but the most important thing is his health and safety.

Training camp for the Avs will open at some point in September, at which point we should get more clarity on Nichushkin’s future.

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