The Detroit Red Wings have featured not only some of the National Hockey League’s greatest teams in history, but also some of the greatest players to ever lace up the skates. From Gordie Howe to Steve Yzerman, Ted Lindsay to Nicklas Lidstrom, Sid Abel to Sergei Fedorov, and plenty of others in between, Detroit’s is a rich history of some of the biggest names in the game.
But like any team with a history as extensive as Detroit’s, there are plenty of players that fans can certainly be excused if they plain forgot about. Our latest countdown will explore some of those names, and maybe even bring back a few brief memories in the process.
Our countdown continues with yet another former Soviet forward who suited up for the Red Wings, but didn’t quite have the same career path as some of the other famed Russian Detroit players.
No. 6: Forward Yuri Butsayev
Yuri Butsayev was drafted by Detroit with the 49th overall selection in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft after several years playing with HC Lada Togliatti in Russia. He made his debut with Detroit in the 1999-2000 season, suiting up in 57 games and tallying three goals with five assists.
He would later play sparingly with the Red Wings the next two seasons, suiting up in 18 games before being dealt at the 2002 NHL Trade Deadline to the Atlanta Thrashers in exchange for defenseman Jiri Slegr.
He would return to Russia in 2003 after playing sparingly with the Thrashers.
However, his life took a different and much darker direction after he was convicted of sexual assault in Finland in 2009, and sentenced to 10 months in prison. He was allowed to leave the country after serving a month of his sentence.