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10-14-2011, 07:19 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Country: Canada
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I would just like to clarify the Import rule in the CHL for everyone as there seems to be confusion.

In the CHL, a team can only hold the rights to two import players at any one time. The armada do not hold Kabonov's rights because they have two others.

This rule is put in place because unlike 98% of junior players in Canada who either cross the border or travel across the province to their teams, these imports cross the atlantic to another continent to play hockey. There need to be rules in place so that teams arent bringing over 5 kids, and letting them fight it out for the roster spots just to send 3 back. Also, teams are of different financial backing, so teams with deeper pockets could spring for 5 of the best to tryout while other financially strapped teams could only spring for 2 of the worst, or the left overs.

This happened in Kitchener of the OHL with regards to Gabriel Landeskog. The Kitchener Rangers owned his rights as well as Tobias Reider, an Edmonton draft pick. Once Landeskog was drafted 2nd overall to a team he was/is going to make, once the CHL import draft approached, GM Steve Spott had to decide to release Landeskog (As he was a shoe in for the NHL) in order to even draft a player, because under CHL rules, you can only own the rights to two import players at once. Therefore, if Landeskog was sent down to Junior, which he cannot play AHL due to the CHL/NHL age agreement, he would be a free agent eligible to sign with ANY CHL. He would not be required to pass through waivers because his rights were not traded, he was released, and would return as a free agent, eligable to decide which team he signed with, pending they only owned the rights to one Import.

The same can be said about Kabonov. Because the Armada already have 2 import players, regardless of injury, or where they play (If they owned the rights to a player who was sent back to europe but not released) they had to have released Kabonov's rights, making his signing in the SEL a possibility. If he was the property of any CHL team that would not be possible, and because his release came when he was not with the Armada (ie with the Islanders) he is not waiver eligible, to be 'claimed' by other teams.

If he was, you would have seen another team who only had plans for one Import this year, claim him as a "just in case he is back" idea.

Hope this helps to clarify some of the grey areas on the CHL import rules etc.

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