Khabibulin faces up to six months behind bars
JEFF CUMMINGS, QMI Agency
|Edmonton Oilers goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin appears in court for his DUI trial in Scottsdale, Arizona on August 27, 2010. (RICK SCUTERI/Reuters)
Edmonton Oilers netminder Nikolai Khabibulin has been found guilty on three charges related to drunk driving in a Scottsdale, Arizona courtroom Friday.
Khabibulin was charged with "extreme" driving under the influence, excessive speed and driving under the influence over a blood alcohol level of 0.08.
Police pulled over the Russian NHL star on Feb. 8 after he was clocked at 70 m.p.h. while driving a Ferrari in a residential area of Paradise Valley, an affluent town northwest of Scottsdale shortly before 12:40 a.m.
The veteran goalie failed to produce proof of insurance and he agreed to a field sobriety test.
Police in Arizona say his blood alcohol content was .164, more than double the legal limit.
He was arrested shortly before 1 a.m. and booked into a district jail.
A sentencing decision will be made on Tuesday. Extreme drunk driving carries with it a mandatory 30-day jail sentence.
The maximum sentence for the offence is a six-month jail term.
"Both Nikolai and the Oilers organization recognize the severity of what has transpired," said the Oilers GM Steve Tambellini in a statement.
"We plan on meeting with Nikolai, his agents and the National Hockey League in the near future."
Some fans of the Edmonton Oilers on fan site OilersNation.com say the team should find a way to walk away from Khabibulin's contract.
"I'm really thinking that today wasn't the last shock for Khabibulin and his remaining fans," wrote one fan in a post on the site.
The Oilers inked Khabibulin to a four-year contract worth $15 million in July 2009 -- a cap hit of roughly $3.75 million until the end of the 2013-2014 season.
He stopped playing in November because of back problems. He was later diagnosed with a herniated disk -- a problem that required surgery in January.
His doctor has not set a time on his return to the ice.
And this isn't the first public relations hit to the Edmonton Oilers this month.
The Edmonton Capitals baseball team, which is owned by the Edmonton Oilers, recently accepted the resignation of its manager, Brent Bowers, after he blew a gasket on an openly gay umpire during a game in Orange County, Calif.
Bowers called the ump a "f------ faggot" in a tirade that was loaded with offensive language.