Russian ice hockey players leading British team's revival

Russian ice hockey players leading British team's revival
Russian ice hockey forwards Pavel Vorobyev and Evgeny Fyodorov are sparking a revival in the fortunes of one of Britain’s ice hockey clubs.

The Edinburgh Capitals endured a miserable 2015/16 season in the Elite League, winning just 10 out of 52 games. The veteran Russian duo however have quickly settled in to help their new team to four consecutive victories in just eight days.

Both players have been on the scoresheet during that run, with Vorobyov grabbing winning goals against Braehead Clan and Manchester Storm, while Fyodorov was on target against Fife Flyers.

Ex-NHL forward Vorobyov was drafted in the first round of the 2000 NHL draft, ahead of superstars such as Niklas Kronwall and Brooks Orpik.

He played 57 NHL games between 2003 and 2006, scoring 10 goals with 15 assists.

Vorobyov also bagged 98 points from 168 games for the Blackhawks' AHL affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals, during that period.

He moved back to Russia in 2006 and has since gained significant experience in the KHL and VHL.

When his signing for the Edinburgh Capitals was announced, the 34-yar-old said he was looking forward to his new adventure.

"I wanted to experience life in Western Europe and heard great things about Scotland and Edinburgh in particular," he said.

"I spent time in the United States earlier in my career where I learned to speak English fluently, so I know I will enjoy life in Scotland as communication will not be an issue.

"I've heard the hockey is a good standard in the UK, so I know it will be a great challenge."

Fyodorov, who was drafted by the Los Angeles Kings in 2000, has played over 700 games in the top tier of hockey in Russia.

He spent last season with Sputnik Nizhny Tagil and Torpedo Ust-Kamenogorsk in the VHL, and says he's excited to add his experience to the team's roster.

"I'd heard the Capitals built a strong squad over the summer," Fyodorov said.

"The chance to experience ice hockey in the UK in a city such as Edinburgh, and play in the Elite League alongside my compatriot Pavel Vorobyov, these were all key factors in my signing.

"I'm excited to come to the club and I want to make a big impact on the ice."

Vorobyov and Fyodorov have been joined in Edinburgh by Jared Staal, whose brothers Eric, Marc and Jordan are all well-established stars in the NHL.