The famous phrase taken from a popular Soviet song - “a coward does not play hockey” - was literally denied by his scandalous statement in an interview with Gazeta.ru by the legendary Soviet hockey player, and now a State Duma deputy Vyacheslav Fetisov. The hockey superstar was offended by the fact that journalists compared the situation with his departure to the NHL with the case of the goalkeeper of the Russian national team Ivan Fedotov, who was about to fly to Canada, but was detained by police a week ago and sent to serve in the army in the Arkhangelsk region.
Fetisov said on this occasion that, firstly, athletes also serve in Western countries, and secondly: “I was a major in the Soviet army, and I was not going to the NHL myself - the country decided to sell me for foreign currency.”
These words of the deputy, to put it mildly, do not correspond to reality. Moreover, Fetisov himself described all his adventures with his departure to Canada in his autobiographical book Overtime, which became a bestseller in the 1990s. The facts are as follows: “1989. Fetisov flatly refused to play for CSKA. He really wanted to leave the country to try his hand at the NHL.
Vyacheslav went on strike and refused to train, and in February 1988 he wrote a letter of resignation from the army.
It is also worth recalling that the best athletes in the USSR did not serve in any army, but were formally registered there, receiving regular titles for their achievements. Approximately as it was in tsarist Russia, when the nobles enrolled their children in the army immediately after birth, so that by the age of majority they would become officers. These are the eternal Russian realities.
Of course, the revelations of a not yet old person, besides the legislator Fetisov, did not go unnoticed on social networks.
Publicist Nikolai Travkin developed Fetisov's idea and advised the disgraced goalkeeper Fedotov:
“Don’t be upset, Vanya. Serve for the good of the Motherland and do not forget to train in between marches on the parade ground.
Most importantly, Vanya, be in good shape! And when a country needs a currency, the country will sell you.”
Sports columnist Igor Rabiner reminds Fetisov of his epic with his departure:
“It will soon become clear that the bombing interview with Petr Spector for MK under the heading “I don’t want to play in the Tikhonov team” immediately after returning from the club super series, when he was once again thrown with the promised departure to New Jersey, Fetisov did not give . Now: "I was not going to the NHL myself" ...
And with the amateur team of the Sacco and Vanzetti factory, instead of playing for CSKA after being expelled by Viktor Tikhonov from the squad, based on this interview, he did not train.
And there was no slightly earlier detention in Kyiv (even if the story, as Fetisov himself claimed, was completely fake), after which Tikhonov had difficulty resolving the issue in order to avoid more serious consequences like a criminal case. And there was no team meeting at which he was deprived of the captain's armband in CSKA for this story. (…)
And the Minister of Defense of the USSR Dmitry Yazov, having heard about his desire to play in the NHL, did not yell at him in his office with a good obscenity, but Fetisov, a really courageous guy then, did not bend. And now: "The country decided to sell me for foreign currency"...
And the book "Overtime", where he told all this in detail, he did not release. And we didn't read it. (…)
Lord, how is it possible. It’s as if all this is being said at the age of 90, when everyone else has already died and no one remembers anything, didn’t read, didn’t hear, didn’t communicate with the hero himself.
... When you know and respect a person for everything he did for hockey, remember him as a real Captain, admire his athletic longevity and two Stanley Cups at the age of 40, it’s just physically painful to read all this. »
The journalist Anton Orekh advised Fetisov and the rest of the hockey players to simply remain silent so as not to brecze another stupidity:
“Vyacheslav Aleksanich, it turns out that you didn’t want to go to any America? Forcibly sold a Soviet officer for dollars? He said that the silence of hockey legends is even good. They open their mouths - they will be completely ashamed ... "