Former Arizona Coyotes player Alex Galchenyuk joins Russian hockey team

By Ignacio Ventura
Published: Sunday, August 27, 2023 - 8:05am

Arizona Coyotes on the ice
Amanda Luberto/KJZZ
Arizona Coyotes on the ice in Glendale, Arizona.

Last month, Alex Galchenyuk returned to the Valley for a third stint with the Arizona Coyotes. But it was short-lived — the team terminated his contract less than two weeks later, after authorities say he threatened to kill Scottsdale police during an arrest. 

However, Galchenyuk is now resuming his hockey career in Russia.

The 11-year NHL veteran has signed a two-year contract with SKA St. Petersburg, in the Russian-based Kontinental Hockey League.

Galchenyuk was arrested July 9 on several charges, including hit-and-run and disorderly conduct, after crashing his car into a sign. According to Scottsdale police, he threatened to kill one officer’s entire family, citing connections to Moscow, and used racial slurs against a Black officer.

Galchenyuk later apologized to the police, the Coyotes and their fans, and joined the NHL’s player assistance program.

Last year, the NHL said it would suspend dealings with the Kontinental Hockey League as a result of the war in Ukraine.

More stories from KJZZ

Law Enforcement