Wild GM Bill Guerin not buying Kirill Kaprizov KHL threat; “It doesn’t bother me at all”

Minnesota Wild GM held a Zoom presser to discuss the signing of Kevin Fiala yesterday. Inevitably the question arose about how things were going with his top player and RFA, Kirill Kaprizov.

“I think things are going well enough,” Guerin updated reporters. “We still have time. I’m in constant communication with Kirill’s agent – we continue to move forward.”

Bill Guerin on Kirill Kaprizov KHL threat

Kaprizov reportedly has a deal on the table with CSKA Moscow that would kick in September 1 if he can’t come to terms with Minnesota. According to Frank Seravalli, there’s been no offer made since April. However; there’s some out there who called this move by Kirill an absolute bluff.

kirill kaprizov
Mar 14, 2021; Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Wild left wing Kirill Kaprizov (97) catches the puck out of the air against the Arizona Coyotes during the second period at Xcel Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Nick Wosika-USA TODAY Sports

Andy Strickland, who hosts the Cam and Strick Podcast is calling this move, “one of the worst bluffs in sports history.” He reports that CSKA budget has already been spent and then cites the cap at around $12 million U.S..

This was also backed by reporter, Aivis Kalnins. “I have no clue why people are buying it and why people are reporting KHL as a possible challenger for Kaprizov,” he said.

When Guerin was asked about the KHL offer and the possibility Kaprizov could bolt for Russia, he seemed unfazed.

“It’s not my decision,” he explained. “It doesn’t bother me at all.”

Guerin went on to say that Kirill’s deal will be longer than Fiala’s one-year contract.

Kaprizov does not want a long-term deal

Kirill Kaprizov led all rookies in goals (27), points (51) and power-play goals (eight) in 55 games this past season. His totals in goals, assists (24) and points served as records by a rookie in franchise history. The 24 year-old is reportedly looking for a shorter deal, while the Wild would like to lock in their budding star to a long-term contract.

Per Kaprizov’s camp, they had not received an offer from the Wild after they rejected an 8 year deal back in April. Maybe the KHL tactic worked as it seems GM Bill Guerin is willing to now do a shorter deal between 4-6 years.

“You’ve got to understand the other side and where they’re coming from,” Guerin said in July. “They’re trying to accomplish something and so are we. I think when there’s maybe a bit of a disagreement, it just takes a little bit more time to come to a compromise.”

NHL Training camps are expected to open in about 6 weeks.