Copper and Blue’s Ryan Batty received an email this morning about an old friend we haven’t heard from in a while.
As you know, I haven’t written about hockey in a long time. Been probably close to eight years now. My love of the game has dwindled, the product has sucked, and watching an owner blackmail a city and a fan base has left me a little bit dead inside. So you can imagine my surprise when I got this email from an old friend last week: “Dearest mick kraut, let’s get mental. Signed, Your Kaptain.”
Ivan Horcov was one of my best quotes while covering the Oilers, but like everyone else, I hadn’t heard anything from him since he stopped tweeting on September 16, 2016, when he announced his retirement. I was both honored and a little terrified that he wanted to see me. The last time we were together...shudder. I don’t even want to say. I’m legally prevented from saying anything, actually. The Kaptain does not mess around.
I was instructed to get on a plane to Frankfurt. From there, I was picked up by a couple of beautiful young women, who I am positive were Russian Swallows. I was then put in a back of a van, and blindfolded. This is not an unusual practice for Horcov. He is a trusting man, and particularly generous with good friends, but old habits die hard. Two other plane rides followed, this time on Horcov’s private Antonov. Part of me expected to end up joining the Kaptain in some cave in the mountains of Kazakhstan. It wouldn’t be the first time. Thankfully, as the blindfold came off, I realized we were in Antalya, on the Turkish Riviera. And there, with a big goofy smile on his face, wearing nothing but a speedo and an ushanka, lying on a literal bed of American dollars, was my old friend, Ivan Horcov. I am not legally permitted to discuss much of what occurred over the next few days, but with the Kaptain’s permission, I was allowed to pass along this interview to you.
How have you been since you retired?
Komrade, there is old Latvian joke, goes like this:
Latvian is rub lamp find genii. Genii say, “What is three wishes?” Latvian say, “I wish potato!” Then, POOF! Potato! Latvian so happy! “Oh! Is potato! Is potato!” say Latvian. Genii ask, “What is next wish?” Latvian is say, “I wish you go away so can enjoy potato!” POOF! Too bad. Also, was only lamp.
Is funny? Not if you are Latvian living under Soviet jackboot which is horrible. For me is opposite. Is roundabout way of saying I am excellent Komrade! I am millionaire for playing hockey game lol.
Have you been able to get any boar hunting in?
Not since I leave Edmonton, no, although to be honest boar hunt in Sherwood Park was not cracked up all that well.
Have you been getting in a lot of sexy time with Olga?
Yeah baby you dig it the most. Did you like it, am like Vincent Vega is profane shoot em up Pulp Fiction. Can you believe did not win Best Picture to Forrest Gump? That is when Oscar was dead to me.
Anyhow yes am having all of the sexiness. I am sexy machine. Vroom vroom! I bent her over couch this morning after I perform oral sex on her. I am generous lover Komrade.
Is the knob still big, komrade?
Am no Tom Gilbert but yes Komrade it is not shrinking. I am using and as a result I am not losing.
So the Edmonton Oilers have made the playoffs for the first time since 2006. You were a big part of the team that made it to the Stanley Cup finals that year, centring the top line alongside Ales Hemsky and Ryan Smyth. What are your fondest memories of that run?
Memories like light inside my mind … misting icy covered memories of way we were *sheds tear*. Oh Komrade. Is sad to think of sometimes, it was so close, could taste it like butterscotch nipple. Favourites? Was when Ales end Steve Yzerman career by breaking ankles and then Komrade Samsonov pass to him and he scores on sad little clown goalie Legace.
Also favourite was Fernando score short handed in final and when Sergei come from box to score goal and Roli throw mask off like mental guy … so many. And not to toot own horn but when we win overtime game that was so great!
Probably most favourite was crowd being crazy. SO loud, was like artillery barrage before we go over top in Chechnya. But not as dangerous. And no Chechnyans smashed to pulp smearing trench walls. Or fighting hand to hand in trench, finally gutting worthy opponent like stewing rabbit, feeling life seep out of him until he give death rattle and collapse.
But other than that was like time in Chechnya. Very loud!
Am pretty sure statue of limitation is not up there so am best to seal lips and throw away key.
And then in Game Three you scored the game winning goal in triple overtime. Can you take us through that goal?
There is Marleau. He is so young. So many disappointments ahead of him.
Torres ties it up. Was SO excite. Season was on line.
And Roli make huge save. He was mental case that guy. Nobody home.
Anyhow on goal there is Matt Greene, he is not in box so is a bit confusing. He make nice play to keep it in. Is Ales and Smytty with broken teeth and me. Usually we play not with Ales, we play with Winchester or Harvey so we have balance lineup, talk about a couple of boat anchors. Anyhow is simple play. Smytty gets it and cycle to Ales, he put it back to Smytty. Look at me I am wide open, is like riding Mongol pony on steppe lol, nobody for miles. Even I couldn’t miss!
Then I slide.
I believe that was the same game Ryan Smyth took a puck in the face from Chris Pronger, and lost three teeth. Were you mad that Smytty was trying to increase his sexiness by losing teeth in the middle of such an important series?
Smytty is greasy mulleted cliché spouting God, I am never mad with him, even when he is trying to steal my sunshine.
You outplayed both Joe Thornton and Pavel Datsyuk, two future Hall of Famers, in those first two series. You were outstanding during that entire playoff run, in fact. Does it bother you that you never seemed to get a lot of respect for your game from Oilers fans, and in particular Edmonton media?
I play over 1000 games in NHL, score over 500 points. Two gold medal at World Championships. All star. Kaptain of NHL team. As fourth round pick. I think I did pretty okay for boy from dirt farm outside of Minsk. So if fans no like, what can I say other than I make more money in week than most of them do in year lol.
As for Edmonton media, are mostly lower than parasite on mangy rat so no I am not caring.
Are you excited to see the Oilers back in the playoffs?
Yes. Wish I was part of it. Is excite!
You lined up against some of the top centres in the game. Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Joe Sakic, Jonathan Toews, Henrik Sedin. What are your thoughts on Conor McDavid?
He is no Ivan Horcov but he is doing ok. LOL. He is amazing balls. SO excite. Is so lucky for Edmonton fans he comes or is maybe Kelly Buchberger is GM and team is on rebuild number five, is the Islanders’ plan.
The Oilers only have one Finn on their current roster, Iiro Pakarinen, alongside a few Swedes (Larsson, Klefbom, Lander, Gustavsson), a German (Draisaitl), and a Czech (Sekera). There’s also only one Russian on the team, Anton Slepyshev. How do you feel about the European makeup of the team? Is there enough mental for your liking?
So many different types of liquors. Is fun! And good cheese and meats. Is too bad there is no Hungarian players … wait what was question. Also Puljujarvi is Finn Komrade. Which is good, you win with Finns.
Your exploits with Lennart Petrell are well-known. Who on the Oilers current roster would you most like to have slivo and party with?
EVERYBODY KOMRADE!!!! Hmm but is is desert island situation would have to say Sekera, Slovaks are mental. Also Desharnais because is always good to have dwarf at party. Like Game of Thrones. Can I say dwarf? No matter. And Klefbom, is so sexy.
Who on the Oilers is the current version of Cam Barker? #redmist
Easy, is Gustavsson. Holding out for a hero to come and slay monster just like Bonnie Tyler say. Turn around Bright Eyes.
What are your thoughts on the Oilers going with #OrangeCrush over #ShirtsOvForHorcov as their playoff hashtag?
Is garbage. Nobody likes orange sugar pop except waddling patrons of Cracker Barrels in Ohio bellying up to chocolate fountain. Everyone loves breasts.
You played with the Anaheim Ducks during your last year in the NHL. Any predictions on who will win the upcoming series between them and the Oilers?
LETS GO OILERS CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP. Oilers all the way Komrade.
Even while on the Ducks, you didn’t mince your words about some of the team’s more notorious players. Now that you’re retired, I assume you can speak even more freely. I’m going to say a name for you, and I’d like you to tell me the first thing that comes to mind.
Head coach Randy Carlyle: can’t work toaster
Ryan Getzlaf: big fucking bald head is amazing. So big and so bald. Is like the moon.
Corey Perry: has sex with rats in dumpster
Kevin Bieksa: starfish while Gibson fish puck out of net
Ryan Kesler: *spits*
You also played with former Duck Patrick Maroon, who is now an Oiler. Have you seen the Instagram account he has of his dog? Any thoughts?
Is very nice, is juxtaposition of big hairy man with little tiny dog. Lol. Is like old TV show with messy gay guy and neat little gay guy, Bert and Ernie.
If you had to go back to Chechnya, who would you rather have beside you, Raffi Torres, Lennart Petrell, Mike Comrie, or Zack Kassian?
Fucking midget Comrie would be difficult to blow up because is so small but is easy answer, is Petrell because is mental.
You were always considered one of the game’s more cerebral players, and your tactical experience as a leader in the Russian army is the stuff of legend. Do you see coaching in your future?
No Komrade, homicide is felony, even is justifiable. Too many entitled little shits, I would go crazy.
What about broadcasting? Do you think you could do better than Jeremy Roenick and Nick Kypreos?
Do you see kielbasa I am eating Komrade? Is not only tasty but is also better broadcaster than those clowns. But no Komrade, is not for me shouting like lobotomized moron about leadership and character and how Shawn Thornton won Bruins’ Cup.
Ok, last question. How is Ales doing?
Ask him yourself, he is at bar getting another round of mojitos.