Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Dynamo's lawyer speaks

I should've played football in high school

The following was taken from an article that appeared in Sport Express today, regarding Moscow Dynamo's recent claim that they own the rights to Alexander Ovechkin:

Dynamo introduced an action into the Circuit Court of D.C., requesting to keep Alexander Ovechkin from playing for the Washington Capitals. If the case is decided in favor of the Moscow team, it will force either compensation or the return of Ovechkin to Russia. Representing the interests of Dynamo in the "matter of Ovechkin" is well-known sports lawyer Alexander Berkovich. Yesterday, from New York, he answered questions from Sport Express correspondent Pavel Strijevsky.

Mr. Berkovich, first make clear who is the defendant in this case: Ovechkin himself, or the Washington Capitals?
Precisely Ovechkin. His present club, the Washington Capitals, are not formally a party in this matter.

Can you tell us the sum of the compensation being sought by the Moscow club?
The discussion does not deal at all with compensation. Dynamo wants it so that its contracts with its hockey players will be respected in North America. The "matter of Ovechkin" was initiated precisely for this purpose.

In that case, what resolution will satisfy Dynamo?
In order to answer your question, first I must go into more detail in the nuances of jurisprudence. Dynamo matched the conditions of Ovechkin's standard contract with Avangard. In this contract it was clearly stipulated: any differences between the club and the hockey player are to be settled before the arbitration committee of the Russian Hockey League; moreover, this specific committee is the only allowable course of resolution of similar conflicts. When Ovechkin instead of returning to Dynamo flew away to Washington, the Moscow club had no other option except to take this action. And, as it is known, the arbitration committee delivered a verdict in favor of Dynamo, after confirming Dynamo's rights to Ovechkin. Which leads us to the following point. There is an international convention about the observance of the solutions of foreign arbitration tribunals. Both the USA and Russia signed this convention. This means that if you won an arbitration matter abroad, then it can be confirmed also in the States. Federal arbitration legislation makes it possible to turn to the local law court and to make a resolution of the foreign arbitration matter into a resolution of the American law court. In our case, initially the basis of the matter will not be examined, only the fact that everything followed the correct procedures. This is why Washington is not the interested party: the Russian arbitration committe examined the interrelations of Ovechkin and Dynamo. The acting contract with Dynamo, and the means by which it was accorded by the resolution of the arbitration committee, means that the hockey player's appearance for any other club is in breach of the agreement between the player and Dynamo. Since the arbitration of the Russian Hockey League forbids the player to chose in favor of any other teams, we are requesting that the American law court confirm this solution, and forbid Ovechkin from playing for Washington.


Blogger Brushback said...


An interview with Anatoliy Harchuk (Dynamo Moscow chairman) appeared today on, and addresses some of the legals issues of the Ovechkin matter.

11/23/05, 11:06 PM


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