Justin K. Aller
Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang has signed a contract with SKA Saint Petersburg of Russia's Kontinental Hockey League.
Letang signed his contract with the club during SKA's 4-0 victory against Lokomotiv Yaroslavl on Friday night. He is expected to be available to play in the team's game against Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk on Sunday.
The 25-year-old decided to sign in Russia due to the ongoing collective bargaining negotiations between the NHL and NHL Players Association. After exchanging multiple proposals, discussions between the two sides took a turn for the worse on Thursday.
It is believed that the two sides have been unable to bridge the gap on a group of issues, including the length of the next collective bargaining agreement, the second year salary cap of the new deal, player pensions and the variance between multi-year contract breakdowns.
According to previous reports, it is believed that if the two sides are unable to come to terms on a new agreement by Jan. 11, that the league will cancel the remainder of the 2012-13 season.
Saint Petersburg has three games scheduled over that span.