Coach OK with goalie’s story

Roy tes­ti­fies in district court

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By TomMcGhee TomMcGhee: 303- 954- 1671, tm­cghee@ den­ver­post. com or @ dpm­cghee

Af­ter his then- girl­friend ac­cused him of beat­ing her, Avalanche goal­tender Se­myon Var­lamov told the team’s man­agers that she hit him, and he moved her aside and locked him­self in a bed­room, Avs coach Pa­trick­Roy tes­ti­fiedThurs­day.

The story Var­lamov told Roy and other team man­agers dif­fered from the ac­count of Ev­geniya Vavrinyuk. Vavrinyuk, whose civil suit against Var­lamov is be­ing heard in­Den­verDistrict Court, has tes­ti­fied that Var­lamov beat her.

The suit, filed in Oc­to­ber 2014, claims Var­lamov had beaten her for years be­fore his ar­rest in Oc­to­ber 2013 on sus­pi­cion of felony kid­nap­ping and as­sault.

Vavrinyuk has said the trou­ble that prompted Var­lamov’s ar­rest be­gan at a Hal­loween par­ty­with other team mem­bers and their wives in 2013 when Var­lamov ig­nored her and spent his time on his cell­phone.

Af­ter the party, she said, she went to the apart­ment they shared. When he came home from the party at about 6 a. m., he ap­peared drunk. She pushed him, strik­ing his face, and he kicked her in the chest, knock­ing her to the floor, she said. When she tried to get up, he kneeled on her chest to keep her down, she tes­ti­fied.

Pros­e­cu­tors de­clined to file the crim­i­nal kid­nap­ping charge and later dropped a mis­de­meanor as­sault charge against Var­lamov.

Roy tes­ti­fied Thurs­day thatVar­lamov told him that when he ar­rived at his apart­ment, Vavrinyuk ac­cused him of be­ing with an­other woman. She be­gan punch­ing him, and he went into a bed­room and locked the door with­out re­tal­i­at­ing. The goalie had marks on his up­per body, chest and neck, Roy said.

“When he gave us his side, wewere sat­is­fied with his story be­cause he had marks and we felt he was telling the truth,” Roy said.

Var­lamov seemed shocked and sur­prised by the ac­cu­sa­tion, Roy said.

Var­lamov’s lawyer at the time toldRoy that the goalie would have to spend a night in jail. “I told ( Var­lamov) it wasn’t go­ing to be a fun one. ... He had bet­ter be pre­pared for it,” Roy said in court Thurs­day.

Var­lam­ovwas re­leased in time to play a game against the Dal­las Stars, in Dal­las, Roy re­called. But Var­lamov was so up­set that he didn’t think he could play.

“He started cry­ing and said, ‘ I don’t think I can play.’ I said, ‘ Varly, I want you to go in there, and lose the game for us.’ I wanted him to know we were be­hind him,” Roy said. “He said, ‘ I’m not go­ing to lose the game.’ I said, ‘ Go in and win for us.’ ”

Yeveg­niy Khalet­skiy, a masseuse who some­times works for the Avs, tes­ti­fied that he be­came friends with Var­lamov, and spent time with both the goalie and Vavrinyuk. She twice told the masseuse that she­wanted to ruin Var­lamov’s rep­u­ta­tion, he said. The first time was in Fe­bru­ary 2013, when the cou­ple were on the verge of split­ting up.

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