UPDATED: D-day for Rekhabi… found guilty on 3 charges

By , August 26, 2010 10:58 pm
Rekhabi looks good in orange..

Rekhabi looks good in orange..

Friday (August 26th… tomorrow.. today… yesterday, depending on when you read this) is the day Nikolai Khabibulin finds out his fate (assuming no more delays).

For those who have been living in a hole, or who google this article 12 years from now, Khabibulin was arrested for Extreme DUI on February 8, 2010 – caught ripping around in his Ferrari with a blood-alcohol level of 0.16% (2x the legal limit). If found guilty, Rekhabi could face a minimum of 30 days in federal, pound-me-in-the-ass prison. OK, really, it’s more likely to be a pretty cush prison, once attended by the likes of Lindsay Lohan, and not a maximum security prison like wherever Robert Downey Jr. has spent 16 of the last 20 years of his life.

Read on here, in the Edmonton Journal article (which has thrilling information in the article such as what color of underwear inmates at Tent City in Arizona wear – pink).

I still think Khabibulin is our best bet in goal this year (Martin Gerber included) if healthy and if un-incarcerated. But that said, I don’t really have sympathy for drunk drivers.

UPDATED: The trial is set for 2:30PM MST.

UPDATE 2 (@5:30PM): Khabibulin has been found guilty on 3 of the 4 charges: DUI over 0.08, extreme DUI (over 0.16) and excessive speeding. The charge of impairment to the slightest degree was thrown out. Sentencing will occur at a later date, but assuming no changes in the ruling (not sure if this part can be appealed??), Khabibulin will spend at least 30 days in prison.

UPDATE 3 (@6:05PM): Tentative sentencing date, pending approval by the state: August 31st… moving pretty fast, which is good for Rekhabi.

UPDATE 4 (@7:00PM): Tweeted by John Shannon of Sportsnet: “NHL source confirms a suspension from the league is possible.”

Update 5 (@7:45PM): The Oilers have released an official statement on the ruling:

Edmonton Oilers General Manager Steve Tambellini released the following statement regarding today’s decision from the Scottsdale City Court.

“The Edmonton Oilers acknowledge and respect the decision handed down today by the Scottsdale City Court to goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin. Both Nikolai and the Oilers organization recognize the severity of what has transpired. We plan on meeting with Nikolai, his agent and the National Hockey League in the near future.”

Once sentencing has been imposed on Tuesday, August 31st, Oilers General Manager Steve Tambellini will be available to the media.

Edmonton Oilers hockey is presented in part by the Rexall Family of Pharmacies, Molson Canadian, ATB Financial, TELUS, Cenovus Energy and Ford.

UPDATE 6 (@11:15AM, Aug 28): Per Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet: “Nik Khabibulin’s sentence hearing in Phoenix is scheduled for Tuesday @ 3 pm MST”. Also per John Shannon of Sportsnet: “Don’t be surprised if the Oilers discipline Khabibulin soon after Tuesday’s sentence.”

102 Responses to “UPDATED: D-day for Rekhabi… found guilty on 3 charges”

  1. mrgod2u says:

    I think it really depends on the sentence handed down. A lot of people are assuming this will be a 30 day, 10 of which are suspended sentence…

    The judge could hand down a 6 month sentence. In which case we have to find a goalie, or basically play the whole season with our backups…

    Hmmm who is the top prospect in this next draft…?

    I still don’t see why the only out is the morals clause. According to the Standard Player Contract he can be let go for not reporting to camp, it is a failure on his part to deliver contracted services, and as it is his breach (and not subject to wishy-washy judgment call of what “moral” behavior is) then the NHLPA looks like the heel for supporting him.

    I’m pretty sure we could get a decent young goalie for what his ripped up contract would save us, isn’t Niemmi still out there?

  2. Racki says:

    I don’t think it will be 30 day. And I was surprised to read that Mark Bell got 6 months. He blew 0.21. He only served six weeks, but I wonder if the reputation Phoenix has means that Khabi gets a stiff punishment and serves it in full. I’m thinking 2 months bare minimum.

    And yes, there are other outs the Oilers can use, but it all stems around the same thing, mrgod2u…. the Oilers taking this situation as an opportunity to void a bad contract. I know some have said that it’s not about the contract for them, but I’m pretty sure that’s the way the majority of fans here feel (that they should take advantage of this opportunity to void a bad contract because its a bad contract). I think otherwise people would be more supportive saying “let’s get this guy in Rehab, if he needs it… get him speaking to the community about what he did wrong and how people shouldn’t drink and drive”, etc. They would turn this negative into a positive.

    So really whether you say you’re tearing it up because he didn’t report to camp or it’s because he’s a horrible role model, it still boils down to the same thing in my mind… you’re (likely) doing it because you’re fed up with Khabibulin’s contract. And I can say I feel pretty much the same way, but I try not to let that stuff cloud judgement. The right thing to do would be to suspend him for a period, get him help, and ensure he takes an active role in the community when it comes to anti-drunk driving public speeches.

    To steal Robin Brownlee’s comment on ON, any other thought would pretty much be being opportunistic.

    I understand that he could have killed someone, and that a DUI (nevermind an extreme DUI) is not to be taken lightly, I’m just saying the right thing to do would be to correct the problem, and ensure this never happens again, while turning it into a bit of a positive (again with the community stuff).

    That said, I would love to rip up his contract as much as the next guy, but in hindsight that isn’t the way to do it, I don’t think.

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