Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Alexei Yashin
At the age of 27, Alexei Yashin has already made history as the first Russian to be the full-time captain of an NHL team. His predecessor, Alexander Mogilny, wore the letter "C" on his jersey only when Pat LaFontaine had to miss a game because of injury. Yashin had been a part-time captain with the Ottawa Senators in the 1997-98 season when Randy Cunneyworth was absent. After Cunneyworth moved to Buffalo, Senators head coach Jacques Martin appointed the Russian center captain.

Yashin, then 25, was one of the league's youngest captains, but in the 1998-99 season he proved that Martin had made the right choice. The Senators reached second place in the Eastern Conference and Yashin had been among the regular season's five best scorers.

No Russian hockey player has ever been selected as the NHL's first draft pick. Yashin, along with Oleg Tverdovsky and Andrei Zyuzin, was a second-round draft pick. So far, he's surpassed them both. Few rookies are lucky enough to be invited to appear in the All-Star Game after their first season.

Despite the fact that the Senators were then a struggling team, Yashin made good progress and soon became the team's leading player. At 25, he had scored over 30 goals in four successive seasons, winning the respect of his teammates and earning the title of captain.

It is unfortunate that Yashin's career has been repeatedly interrupted by contract disputes. In 1995, after a conflict with the Senators administration, Yashin returned to Russia and even played three games for CSKA. Meanwhile, the Senators' losing streak continued. Four months later, the general manager and chief coach were ousted and Yashin signed a new five-year contract. However, a second conflict with the team's management wasn't so easily resolved. A year before his five-year contract expired, Yashin and his agent demanded the terms be renegotiated. After his claim was turned down, Yashin went on strike over the existing contract. Yashin missed the entire 1999-00 season in a contract dispute with the Senators that became more controversial as time went on. The Senators refused to trade him or renegotiate his contract, and at year's end he played in the World Championships during Russia's worst performance at the tournament. Yashin's situation got worse when a judge ruled he had to honour his contract with Ottawa, thus rendering his lost year meaningless.

In the summer of 2001, Yashin was traded to the New York Islanders and joined a revamped Islander squad which had also acquired Michael Peca from the Buffalo Sabres. Yashin had an immediate impact on the Island as the team reached the playoffs for the first time since 1994. In 2002-03 Yashin played in 600th career NHL game and reached the 600-point plateau before injuries limited the talented forward to a mere 47 regular season games. Yashin was able to return for the 2004 post season, however, the Islanders were eliminated in the first round by the Tampa Bay Lightning.

During the NHL lockout in 2004-05, he competed in 10 games with Lokomotiv Yaroslavl of the Russian Super League, however when the NHL returned to action so too did Alexei Yashin. Prior to the start of the season, the Islanders lost some key players from their roster, and as a result Yashin was named team captain. The Islanders failed to make the playoffs that year for the first time since Yashin's arrival, and the pressure for the Russian to produce next season grew greater than ever. Yashin's 2006-07 season was predominantly injury plagued, however upon his healthy arrival back on the club he tallied 13 points in 16 games and led the Isles back into the playoff picture. After the Islanders lost out in the first round of the playoffs that year, the club decided to buy out the remainder of Yashin's contract in June 2007. On July 20, 2007, Yashin signed a one-year contract with with Lokomotiv Yaroslavl of the Russian Super League.

On the international stage, the former first rounder is a two-time member of Russia's Olympic team (1998 and 2002), a seven-time member of its World Championship team (1993, 1994, 1996, 1999, 2001, 2004 and 2005), two-time member of its World Junior team (1992, 1993) and a two-time member of its World Cup team.


REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1989-90 Luch Sverdlovsk USSR-2
1990-91 Avtomobilist Sverdlovsk USSR 26 2 1 3 10
1990-91 Soviet Union EJC-A 5 1 3 4 2
1990-91 Avtomobilist Sverdlovsk USSR-Q 12 1 1 2 12
1991-92 Dynamo Moscow CIS 35 7 5 12 19
1991-92 Dynamo Moscow 2 CIS-3 6 6 2 8 8
1991-92 Russia WJC-A 7 4 2 6 2
1992-93 Dynamo Moscow CIS 27 10 12 22 18 10 7 3 10 18
1992-93 Russia WJC-A 3 1 0 1 4
1992-93 Russia WC-A 8 2 1 3 5
1993-94 Ottawa Senators NHL 83 30 49 79 22 -49
1993-94 Russia WC-A 5 1 2 3 8
1994-95 Las Vegas Thunder IHL 24 15 20 35 32
1994-95 Ottawa Senators NHL 47 21 23 44 20 -20
1995-96 CSKA Moscow CIS 4 2 2 4 4
1995-96 Ottawa Senators NHL 46 15 24 39 28 -15
1995-96 Russia WC-A 8 4 5 9 4
1996-97 Russia W-Cup 5 0 2 2 6
1996-97 Ottawa Senators NHL 82 35 40 75 44 -7 7 1 5 6 2
1996-97 Russia WC-A 5 3 0 3 12
1997-98 Ottawa Senators NHL 82 33 39 72 24 +6 11 5 3 8 8
1997-98 Russia Olympics 6 3 3 6 0
1998-99 Ottawa Senators NHL 82 44 50 94 54 +16 4 0 0 0 10
1998-99 Russia WC-A 6 8 1 9 6
1999-00 Ottawa Senators NHLMGNT
1999-00 Russia WC-A 5 1 1 2 8 0
2000-01 Ottawa Senators NHL 82 40 48 88 30 +10 4 0 1 1 0
2000-01 Russia WC-A 7 2 3 5 6 -3
2001-02 New York Islanders NHL 78 32 43 75 25 -3 7 3 4 7 2
2001-02 Russia Olympics 6 1 1 2 0 +1
2002-03 New York Islanders NHL 81 26 39 65 32 -12 5 2 2 4 2
2003-04 New York Islanders NHL 47 15 19 34 10 -1 5 0 1 1 0
2003-04 Russia WC-A 6 1 2 3 2 0
2004-05 Russia W-Cup 4 1 2 3 4
2004-05 Lokomotiv Yaroslavl Russia 10 3 3 6 14 9 3 7 10 10
2004-05 Russia WC-A 9 2 1 3 8 +3
2005-06 New York Islanders NHL 82 28 38 66 68 -14
2005-06 Russia Olympics 8 1 3 4 4 +1
2006-07 New York Islanders NHL 58 18 32 50 44 +6 5 0 0 0 0
2007-08 Lokomotiv Yaroslavl Russia 56 16 27 43 63 16 8 6 14 16
2008-09 Lokomotiv Yaroslavl KHL 56 21 26 47 30 19 7 11 18 10
2009-10 SKA St. Petersburg KHL 56 18 46 64 38 4 2 1 3 0
2010-11 SKA St. Petersburg KHL 52 15 18 33 50 4 1 4 5 0
2011-12 CSKA Moscow KHL 43 9 11 20 18 3 1 0 1 0
NHL Totals 850 337 444 781 401 48 11 16 27 24


CIS First All-Star Team (1993)NHL Second All-Star Team (1999) Played in NHL All-Star Game (1994, 1999, 2002) Suspended for entire 1999-2000 season by Ottawa for refusing to report to team, November 9, 1999.
Independent arbitrator ruled that Yashin was eligible to play for Team Russia at 2000 World Hockey Championships. Traded to NY Islanders by Ottawa for Bill Muckalt, Zdeno Chara and NY Islanders' 1st round pick (Jason Spezza) in 2001 NHL Draft, June 23, 2001. Signed as a free agent by Yaroslavl (Russia), February 14, 2005. Signed as a free agent by Yaroslavl (Russia), July 20, 2007. Signed as a free agent by St. Petersburg (KHL), May 29, 2009.
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