Capitals looking into video appearing to show Kuznetsov with cocaine
Warning: Video contains graphic content
"We are aware of the video that surfaced on social media of Evgeny Kuznetsov," a team spokesman told the Washington Post's Isabelle Khurshudyan on Monday. "We are currently in the process of gathering facts and will have no further comment at this time."
In a statement translated by Russian Machine Never Breaks' Igor Kleyner, Kuznetsov told Russian outlet Sport-Express that he has never used drugs and doesn't plan to, adding that the video was taken following the Capitals' championship victory last year:
Yes, I saw the video on the internet. I don’t necessarily have anything to do with what is going on around me. I never used drugs and have no intention to get into it. If there are any questions, I am ready to undergo testing.
The video is a year old. It happened in summer of 2018, when we won the Cup in Vegas. It has nothing to do with the World Championship at all. I just came by the room where my some people I knew stayed. When I saw what was going on there - unfamiliar women, unknown substances on the table - I called my friend and left as soon as I could.
Unfortunately, someone decided to catch some notoriety just now - after the (Russian team) lost. I have nothing to hide, let this be on (the) conscience of whoever posted the video.
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said Monday that the league needs time to gather more facts on the video before commenting on it, according to Sportsnet's Chris Johnston.
Twitter user @thesavspb posted and later deleted the clip purportedly showing the superstar forward sitting at a table with what appears to be cocaine.
It has since been shared by other Twitter accounts and has been uploaded to YouTube.
Kuznetsov and Team Russia defeated the Czech Republic to win bronze at the World Championship in Slovakia on Sunday.