Kostitsyns Being Investigated; Leaf Could Care Less

Dino MoriAnalyst IFebruary 20, 2009

Amidst his own on-ice struggles, Mikhail Gravboski likely could care less about the scrutiny his fellow Belarussians are under these days.

La Presse, a french-language newspaper in Montreal, is reporting Canadien brothers Andrei and Sergei Kostitsyn are being questioned by local police about ties they may have with Pasquale Mangione, who is facing drug and weapon charges. 

The three have been seen frequenting bars and restaurants in Montreal.  Fellow Hab Roman Hamrlik is also being linked to Mangione, who is purported to be involved in criminal gangs in that city.

Gravboski, in his first season with the Maple Leafs, has had a long-standing feud with the Kostitsyns.

The 25-year-old diminutive forward was tossed out a game back on Jan. 8 for pushing an official trying to get at the younger Sergei Kostitsyn during an altercation.  He gave the Bell Center crowd the royal salute before leaving the ice

A still steaming Gravboski said after the game, "If he (Sergei) wants to fight we'll go into the street and every minute of every day I'll wait for him and we'll fight."

Gravboski was suspended three games for an abuse of an official.

The Kostitsyns dislike Gravboski because they say he talks too much about them with the Russian newspapers.

Grabovski didn't endear himself to the rest of the Canadiens back on Nov. 8, when he butt-ended Hab goalie Carey Price while trying to get position in front of the Montreal net.

All three Belarussians were teammates with the Canadiens last season.

Gravboski was shipped to Toronto last July for the rights to Greg Pateryn and a 2010 second round draft pick.

The pint-size forward fell out of favour with Habs coach Guy Carbonneau last March, when he purposefully missed a team flight to Los Angeles after being sat as a healthy scratch in a game against Phoenix.

This season, Gravboski has 13 goals and 28 points in 54 games. But, has just scored three times and assisted on six others in his past 28 games.

After such a promising start with the Maple Leafs, Gravboski has reverted to his inconsistent Montreal days, so much so that Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson was forced to bench the speedy, sophomore winger on Feb. 4  in Buffalo.

Hopefully, for Gravboski sake he can return to the form he showed in the team's first quarter of the season. 

Suffice to say, the drama unfolding in Montreal is the least of his worries.