Sunday, 15 September 2013

Lukoyanov Has Bigger Problems

Rarely do you see photos like this one on HBIC. However, tonight's topic requires one to examine the player in question as we look at a highlight from a recent KHL game. The player with the washboard abs is not Ak Bars Kazan's Artem Lukoyanov, but that photo appears on a site belonging to "Artem Lukoyanov". If you haven't heard of, that's ok as we'll discuss that site in a bit. But Mr. Lukoyanov's first highlight of the season is probably one he wants to forget. Quickly.

Late in Thursday's game between Ak Bars Kazan and Metallurg Magnitogorsk, Kazan led 3-2. That prompted Metallurg coach Mike Keenan to pull the goalie. No surprise there, right? And yes, Iron Mike Keenan coaches for the city named for Magnitnaya Mountain that was almost pure iron and having the largest iron and steel works company in the country, Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works. But I digress.

With the puck heading into the Metallurg zone, Lukoyanov jumped at the chance to ice the game when he picked up a loose puck with nothing to hit but twine. Here's the highlight.
Oh, Lukoyanov. In his defence, we've seen lots of players miss open nets (Patrik Stefan, anyone?) and we'll see more of these types of highlights as the season progresses. What bothers me, however, is this page that I found the top photo on that reportedly belongs to Mr. Lukoyanov.

You see, that well-defined young man is NOT Artem Lukoyanov. Far from it, in fact. This is Artem Lukoyanov.
Not quite the same guy, right? I did a little digging, and it appears that this site is the Russian Facebook. According to the Wikipedia page about the site, is the "second biggest social network service in Europe after Facebook" and is a popular social media site in "Russia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Belarus, and Israel". And like Facebook, it appears that someone is using a fake photo on his page.

I'm happy to report that the image of Cristiano Ronaldo on the linked site above is not run by Artem Lukoyanov. It appears to be someone with the same name as our goal-phobic player. But upon digging deeper into a Google search, it appears that the 24 year-old's reputation has other, bigger issues to deal with as we work into the KHL season.

On August 18, Mr. Lukoyanov was arrested for assaulting a police officer! I did some scouring, and it appears that he and a friend, Maxim Gruzdev of hockey club Neftyanik, were detained after an altercation at a night club in Almetyevsk. Reports from the Tatarstan regional Internal Affairs Ministry indicated that Lukoyanov "struck one of the officers in the side of head and attempted to steal his gun". As of Tuesday, August 20, there still wasn't a clear indication what charges Lukoyanov and his friend were facing, but reports from witnesses vary greatly from what the Ministry reported. spoke to witnesses who stated that Lukoyanov was hardly responsible for a brawl that started, let alone assaulting any officers whatsoever. The Ministry's press release read as follows,
"Our official tried to calm the two aggressive people who were in a state of alcoholic intoxication. But they began to resist, causing a scuffle.One of them tried to snatch from police service weapon, but after a warning shot young people calmed down. Employees received minor damage. However, one of them had to be hospitalized with suspected head injury. Young people face up to 10 years in prison. The investigation is ongoing."
The suspected head injury was a concussion, according to this report. But eye witnesses at the club where the brawl erupted, Lukoyanov's involvement was far different.
When I came to the restaurant, he saw there Artem and his wife, Evgenia, and greeted them. Then I was away for a short while, and when I came back, I saw a mess and people attacking Artem. The entire fight took place in a room, in front of many witnesses. When came the police, twisted Artem and another guy on the floor and handcuffed them.You know, we also usually weaker ones, and to take away - said an eyewitness - There wasn't any attack on the employees. Of course, now police say that Artem pounced on them, I do not understand why it was necessary to shoot, because at that time Artem was lying on the floor in handcuffs. By the way, the camera n the restaurant filmed all, but it was immediately removed by the investigative committee"
It appears the investigation is ongoing, but that site stated that "vice-president of KHL Vladimir Shalaev took off for Kazan that on a place to penetrate into a situation". While the English is awkwardly stated, it appears that the KHL came to the rescue of its player in terms of finding a solution in this matter.

Here's hoping that Artem Lukoyanov is cleared in this matter so that he can continue to play hockey. The charges levied against him are serious, so let's hope that he isn't found guilty, resulting in a decade in a Russian prison. I'm pretty sure that they don't play hockey in prison, and the video clip above shows that Lukoyanov could use a little extra time on the ice.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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