Belarusian athletes are tired of constant Lukashenka’s "bashings".
Championship.com journalist Dzmitry Yarykalau shared his opinion about the processes taking place in the Belarusian hockey.
"Looking at what happens in the Belarusian hockey, the hairs on the back of my neck bristle. Uladzimir Berazhkou, almost the only professional manager in the history of the Dynama Minsk team, has been sent to jail as a result of internal intrigues. Craig Woodcroft, with whom the "bisons" played out one of the best seasons for the whole time in the KHL, has been gradually pushed out of the club. First, his assistants were removed, and after that they did not extend relations with the leaders, and, eventually, said goodbye to the Canadian himself. Add to this the constant dances with the internal limit, and you’ll get an explosive mixture, with which even the most patriotic hockey players will not want to have anything in common.
The fish, as it usually happens, rots from the head. The emotional speeches of the head of the republic lead to the regular change of the hockey authorities. After each ignominiously ended tournament, Lukashenka chews out the Belarusian team players, offering if not to shoot them down, then at least to disperse them. It's impossible to work calmly under such conditions, of course. This applies to the managers sitting on the powder keg, and the hockey players themselves. The federation did absolutely nothing for Andrei Stas, faithfully and truly serving the Belarusian hockey for a whole decade, just playing on his patriotism.
It is self-confident to demand something from local players, when the national team and its base club are full of naturalized Canadians and Americans. And it would be nice if they lived in Belarus for many years, wrapping their mind around the new homeland, and fought for the national team, regardless of club registration. But no! Jeff Platt simply forgot about the national team, appointing his wedding for the world championship. Although Charles Lingle came to the last world championship, he bluntly admitted that he did not know when they celebrated Victory Day in Belarus. At the same time, all of them have stepped into the shoes of the Belarusian youth, which is not the most talented one, but because of that it is more in need of the conditions for growth.
The domination of legionaries, the constant change of managers and coaches, unfulfilled promises and other features of the national hockey in Belarus pushed Stas to such a difficult decision. Moreover, as far as we know, several of his compatriots are ready to accept Russian citizenship, thereby completing their performance for the national Belarusian team. Sharply reacting to the team captain’s deed, our neighbors are attaching labels on the yesterday's nation hero and are looking for reasons in the foreign vegetable garden, while their own one has long overgrown with weeds. If nothing changes in the Belarusian hockey economy, Stas might become not a black sheep, but the first swallow. And Avanhard or Skabelka will be to blame for this in the last place," – Yarykalau wrote.