The domestic violence case against Colorado Avalanche goalie Semyon Varlamov has been dropped after prosecutors were unable to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt, according to the Denver Post's Sadie Gurman.
James Nicholson of LAKingsInsider.com provided a statement from Varlamov:
I’m excited for sure. The process is over. Like I said before, I’m glad to be here today. I just want to say thank you for my teammates, for ownership, for the general manager, for the Avalanche fans for supporting me. That’s what I want to say. [Reporter: It’s over. You never seemed too worried about it.] Yeah, it’s over. I’m leaving everything behind right now. Right now I can sleep and focus on my job, on hockey and that’s it.
Nicholson continued with a statement from Patrick Roy, President of Hockey Operations for the Avalanche:
My relationship with our players is based on respect and trust. I think Varly was very professional from the first day this thing came out and he had the support from his teammates. And now it’s behind us, let’s focus and let’s play hockey.
The 25-year-old NHL star was charged with felony kidnapping and assault back in October after Denver police reported that Varlamov attacked his girlfriend in their apartment while under the influence of alcohol.
Gurman adds that the kidnapping charges were dropped in November for lack of evidence. Now, the assault charges have been erased for the same reason.
Prosecutors made it clear that the victim's recollection of the events could in fact be legitimate, instead pointing to the lack of evidence as the primary reason for the charges being dropped. District attorney spokeswoman Lynn Kimbrough had the following statement regarding the prosecutors' decision, per Gurman: "That's not to say we don't believe our victim. It became clear we didn't have a belief we could prove it beyond a reasonable doubt."
The dropped charges mean that the Russian goaltender can now shift his focus back to the ice, where he's been stellar for the Avalanche all year long. Varlamov is 16-8 in the crease in 2013-14 and has recorded 764 saves in 25 total appearances. He ranks eighth in the NHL in wins (16) and 10th in save percentage (.924).
Semyon Varlamov is a top 10 goalie in the league in wins. And it's not a misleading stat. His GAA is good, his SV% is fantastic. #top10— Aarif Mohie El-Deen (@DailyNHLGrind) December 17, 2013
Despite being arrested by Denver police on the aforementioned domestic violence-related charges Oct. 30, Varlamov did not miss any games as a result. Jean-Sebastien Giguere has made 10 appearances at goalie throughout the season but is still considered Colorado's No. 2 option.
Varlamov, who was selected in the first round of the 2006 NHL draft by the Washington Capitals, is in the middle of his third season with the Avalanche. Colorado is currently third in the Western Conference's Central Division, eight points back of the league-leading and defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks.
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