Pavel Datsyuk on Yelena Isinbaeva words regarding anti-gay law: ‘I’m an orthodox and that says it all’
— Igor Eronko (@IgorEronko) August 22, 2013
Weary of taking something translated at face value, I sought out the original copy and translated the best I knew how.
Google translate came up with the exact translation you see above. Clearly this wasn’t the first time the phrase had made its way through the Google…Maybe the phrase has different context in Russian than it does in English?
I consulted Russian NHL journalist Slava Malamud to confirm no context was being lost.
@LarimoreONsprts He said “This says everything”
— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) August 22, 2013
That doesn’t change the context.
This wasn’t some clumsy translation, or misunderstanding between languages. This was Datsyuk making a social statement in a place where many of his Russian brethren have gone “no comment” and that has sufficed. Not only does it suffice, it’s the best course of action if you are playing hockey in America professionally, and playing hockey in your country come February.
Anything other than “no comment” puts you in hot water. Granted free speech in Russia is not looked upon as favorably as it is here in the United States. He’ll face public outrage and backlash here, but ultimately he’ll score goals and we’ll forget about it.Who knows what happens if he defies Putin and speaks against it?
So from a self-preservation stand point, if he had to take a side, he probably made the right choice, but He didn’t have to announce what side he was on, and he did, so now he’ll have to deal with it.
I wish it were as easy as “keep your politics out of my sports.”
Politics are everywhere.
If you want to see some of the other holes I tried to punch through the actual meaning of the comment, head over to Twitter @Larimoreonsprts and check out my conversation with The Sporting News NHL beat writer Sean Gentille