Way back in early July, Traktor Chelyabinsk published a press release stating that Evgeny Kuznetsov was changing his jersey number to 84 for the upcoming 2013-14 season. Traktor did not say why, and in interviews since the news broke, Kuznetsov has not been asked about it. Russian media, we care about these things!
Meanwhile, Traktor continues to sell Kuznetsov 92 gear in its online store. Without a discount.
On Wednesday we finally got our first look at Kuznetsov wearing his new number (honoring, I assume, me and my birth year) during Traktor’s media day.
A few more photos by the redundantly named Ivan Ivanov are below the jump.
Traktor goalie/meteor witness Michael Garnett also took some time to pose with a new item in Traktor’s store, a 3D foam finger thing.
Finally, during the offseason, Traktor signed defenseman Alexander Guskov to a contract. The 36-year-old was recently asked what he thought of Kuznetsov by Sport-Express’s Dinara Kafiskina.
“Kuznetsov is a talented kid, and he is a workaholic too,” the veteran said, as translated by RMNB’s Igor Kleyner. “He is not lazy, never slacks off. You can see he wants to achieve a lot. He can probably do it if he continues to work like this.”