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New York Islanders Daily: Nikolay Kulemin Takes Big Money Contract in KHL

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 14: Nikolay Kulemin #86 of the New York Islanders skates against the New York Rangers at the Barclays Center on January 14, 2016 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. The Islanders defeated the Rangers 3-1. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 14: Nikolay Kulemin #86 of the New York Islanders skates against the New York Rangers at the Barclays Center on January 14, 2016 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. The Islanders defeated the Rangers 3-1. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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It’s official, the former New York Islanders fourth liner Nikolay Kulemin is going to the KHL to continue his hockey career.

It seemed unlikely that the New York Islanders would bring Nikolay Kulemin back after this year, as he’s 31-years-old and was grossly overpaid the past four years. The question was would an NHL team give him another chance and at what price?

The contract Garth Snow gave him was a four-year $16.75 million deal that he signed before the 2014-2015 season. With a cap hit of $4.19 million per year, the Isles overpaid for a guy who spent his entire tenure in their bottom six (shocking, I know).

Well, this weekend, Nikolay Kulemin officially took his talents back to the motherland as he signed a deal with the KHL’s Magnitogorsk Metallurg. Kulemin got a multi-year deal worth up to $200 million rubles a season.

That’s equivalent to $3.2 million a year USD. Good for Nikolay, I think there’s no shot that he would’ve got that much money here in the NHL. He likely would’ve got a short-term deal worth roughly $2 million if he remained in the league.

Instead, Kulemin returns to the team he started his career with in 2005-2006. Kulemin played three years with Magnitogorsk Metallurg before coming over to play with Toronto. Let’s take a moment to remember Nikolay’s best moment as a New York Islander:

The game-winning goal from Nikolay Kulemin, the New York Islanders last playoff game at Nassau Coliseum.

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