Capitals’ Kuznetsov banned from Russia team for 4 years

Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov tested positive for cocaine at the world championship and has been banned from the Russia team for four years.

Kuznetsov failed a doping test after a sample was taken on May 26, the day Russia won the bronze medal by defeating the Czech Republic in Slovakia, the International Ice Hockey Federation said Friday.

The previous day, Russia lost in the semifinals to eventual champion Finland.

The ban does not stop Kuznetsov playing in the NHL, which classifies cocaine as a drug of abuse rather than a performance-enhancing doping product.

“I feel absolutely terrible for letting you down,” Kuznetsov said in a statement published by the NHL addressing Capitals owners and fans. “I realize that the only way I can win you back is to take ownership of my situation and my actions from this point forward.”

The NHL said Kuznetsov, 27, agreed to meet with commissioner Gary Bettman before training camp, and will undergo regular testing.

MLS: Josef Martinez scored in an MLS-record 12th consecutive appearance, and Atlanta United beat host Orlando City 1-0 for its sixth straight victory. … Cristian Roldan and Raul Ruidiaz each scored to lift the Seattle Sounders to a 2-1 win over at the Portland Timbers to secure this year’s Cascadia Cup trophy.

WNBA: Alyssa Thomas scored 27 points and Courtney Williams added 24 to help the host Connecticut Sun rally to beat the Las Vegas Aces 89-85. … Diamond DeShields scored 22 points and the host Chicago Sky beat the Washington Mystics 85-78. Washington (20-8) is tied atop the standings with Connecticut, but the Sun own the tiebreaker. … Tiffany Hayes scored 19 points and the visiting Atlanta Dream beat the New York Liberty 90-87 to snap a 12-game losing streak.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Capitals-Kuznetsov-banned-from-Russia-team-for-14375272.php.

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