On Wednesday, October 30, Semyon Varlamov turned himself in to the police and was charged with second-degree kidnapping and third-degree assault.
According to the police report, Varlamov allegedly kicked her, stomped on her, dragged her around the house and threatened her. The woman had bruises consistent with a physical encounter, the police report said.
He appeared before a judge yesterday and was let out on a $5000 bond. He was ordered to stay away from his girlfriend and to hand over any firearms that he might have (he stated that he did not have any).
What if this had been a Columbus Blue Jackets player instead of a Colorado Avalanche player? What ramifications would this have and how would the fan base react?
I would expect John Davidson and Jarmo Kekalainen to release the same press release that the Colorado Avalanche brass did as this is not the kind of attention wanted for the Blue Jackets. The Colorado Avalanche sent out a statement that said:
The Colorado Avalanche organization is aware of the allegations concerning Semyon Varlamov. At this time, and until the conclusion of this investigation, the Avalanche organization will have no further comment on this situation.
The NHL could potentially suspend Varmalov for his actions in addition to the legal action that will take place. Also, with the possibility of deportation, he could not be allowed to play in the United States again. (I’m sure the KHL would still be an option)
An interesting twist to this is that domestic violence is a deportable offense, under Section 237 of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Moreover, certain convictions for kidnapping are classified as “aggravated felonies” under Section 101(a)(43) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Therefore, if Varlamov is convicted of either, he may potentially be placed into removal proceedings by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Varlamov is the starting goaltender for the Avalanche, and with a 1.76 GAA and a .945 save percentage, he is going to be hard to replace. Luckily, the Blue Jackets have depth within the system and could call up a suitable replacement.
The fan reaction is what worries me the most. The Blue Jackets fan base rallies around players and builds them up, but look at what happened to Adam Foote and Jeff Carter when they left. Granted, they did not leave on good terms, but most fans refuse to even say the names. If a player scorned the team the way Varlamov did, I suspect most of the fan base would turn their backs on him.
What do you think would happen if this was one of the Blue Jackets players? Let me know in the comments!