Thursday, March 15, 2012

How long can Nashville wait on Radulov?

Earlier today, Dmitry Chesnokov of Yahoo! Sports reported that Alexander Radulov is ready to make the move to come back to the Nashville Predators. The only problem is that Salavat Yulaev Ufa, Radulov's KHL team, has not yet granted him permission to leave.

This process certainly isn't over. Radulov is reportedly meeting with KHL President Alexander Medvedev tomorrow, and will try to find a way that will allow him to make his return to Music City. However, as this process continues to drag along, one would think the Predators would have to impose a deadline to Radulov returning this season.

With the playoffs right around the corner, Radulov would need to have enough time to incorporate himself into the locker room and lineup before the playoffs began. If he were to come back in the next few days, that probably wouldn't be a huge issue. However, if this process drags out for another week or two, suddenly you have just a handful of games left before the postseason begins.

If Radulov comes back with five games or less remaining in the season, there would be hardly any time for him to develop chemistry with his linemates. Remember, Radulov hasn't played with the majority of the Predators' roster, and the ones that he did play with haven't played with him in four years.

It's certainly going to be an interesting saga to follow going forward. If Radulov is able to resolve his differences with the KHL in an efficient manner, then it's a non-issue. He's a gifted player that would provide an immediate boost to the Predators lineup. However, if they are unable to come to an agreement soon that would allow him to return to the Predators this season, when should the Predators close the door? Or should they close the door at all? Sound off in the comments below.