Defenseman Ruslan Salei, who spent the past year with the Detroit Red Wings, is going to play in the KHL next season. Specifically, Salei is going to suit up for Lokomotiv, which is the team that hired former Red Wings assistant Brad McCrimmon as its head coach.
When NHL free agency opened, the thinking was that Salei would try to sign with a team closer to his home in California. If that didn't work out, Salei's other main hope was that the Red Wings would still have a need on defense and decide to bring him back. However, with the Red Wings signing Mike Commodore and Ian White, any chance of Salei returning to Detroit was eliminated.
Salei's decision to go to the KHL with McCrimmon isn't all that surprising. He probably will get a pretty nice payday, and he doesn't have to wait around for an NHL team to make him an offer. I figured he would end up with a team in the NHL out West, but he's certainly not the first NHL player to go the KHL route.