January 17, 2022

Nepotism Takes to the Ice


Nepotism Takes to the Ice
We assume Russian hockey is basically like hockey anywhere else, just with a little more vodka. Wikimedia Commons user slgckgc.

Roman Rotenburg has been appointed the head of St. Petersburg's SKA professional hockey team despite having no hockey playing or coaching experience.  So how does one get a coveted position in professional sports? Nepotism.

After all, it's all in who you know. This holds true, apparently, even (especially?) among Russian oligarchs.

Rotenburg's father, Boris Rotenburg, is a well-known childhood friend of Putin's and one of Russia's wealthiest businessmen (those two aspects are interrelated). As such, it's believed that Roman's appointment to a leading position with the hockey team is due mostly to his connections.

Roman boasts his hockey experience as including having watched over 800 games, which seems fair, but, by that standard, almost every American dad with a beer gut would qualify for NFL coaching positions.

Perhaps Putin himself would like to join the starting lineup?

You Might Also Like

New Life Breathed into the Museum of Hockey
  • February 28, 2021

New Life Breathed into the Museum of Hockey

Moscow's stunning Museum of Hockey and Hockey Hall of Fame is a hidden gem with new investors ready to keep it going – hopefully for a long time to come.
KHL Victor Crowned
  • May 23, 2021

KHL Victor Crowned

Omsk Avangard clinches Russian hockey's Gagarin Cup with some famous NHL faces.
Holier Hockey
  • September 20, 2021

Holier Hockey

In which a Russian priest becomes a hockey referee and begins to transform the sport. 
Like this post? Get a weekly email digest + member-only deals

Some of Our Books

Bears in the Caviar

Bears in the Caviar

Bears in the Caviar is a hilarious and insightful memoir by a diplomat who was “present at the creation” of US-Soviet relations. Charles Thayer headed off to Russia in 1933, calculating that if he could just learn Russian and be on the spot when the US and USSR established relations, he could make himself indispensable and start a career in the foreign service. Remarkably, he pulled it of.
Russia Rules

Russia Rules

From the shores of the White Sea to Moscow and the Northern Caucasus, Russian Rules is a high-speed thriller based on actual events, terrifying possibilities, and some really stupid decisions.
Maria's War: A Soldier's Autobiography

Maria's War: A Soldier's Autobiography

This astonishingly gripping autobiography by the founder of the Russian Women’s Death Battallion in World War I is an eye-opening documentary of life before, during and after the Bolshevik Revolution.
The Frogs Who Begged for a Tsar

The Frogs Who Begged for a Tsar

The fables of Ivan Krylov are rich fonts of Russian cultural wisdom and experience – reading and understanding them is vital to grasping the Russian worldview. This new edition of 62 of Krylov’s tales presents them side-by-side in English and Russian. The wonderfully lyrical translations by Lydia Razran Stone are accompanied by original, whimsical color illustrations by Katya Korobkina.
Murder and the Muse

Murder and the Muse

KGB Chief Andropov has tapped Matyushkin to solve a brazen jewel heist from Picasso’s wife at the posh Metropole Hotel. But when the case bleeds over into murder, machinations, and international intrigue, not everyone is eager to see where the clues might lead.
A Taste of Russia

A Taste of Russia

The definitive modern cookbook on Russian cuisine has been totally updated and redesigned in a 30th Anniversary Edition. Layering superbly researched recipes with informative essays on the dishes' rich historical and cultural context, A Taste of Russia includes over 200 recipes on everything from borshch to blini, from Salmon Coulibiac to Beef Stew with Rum, from Marinated Mushrooms to Walnut-honey Filled Pies. A Taste of Russia shows off the best that Russian cooking has to offer. Full of great quotes from Russian literature about Russian food and designed in a convenient wide format that stays open during use.
22 Russian Crosswords

22 Russian Crosswords

Test your knowledge of the Russian language, Russian history and society with these 22 challenging puzzles taken from the pages of Russian Life magazine. Most all the clues are in English, but you must fill in the answers in Russian. If you get stumped, of course all the puzzles have answers printed at the back of the book.
Driving Down Russia's Spine

Driving Down Russia's Spine

The story of the epic Spine of Russia trip, intertwining fascinating subject profiles with digressions into historical and cultural themes relevant to understanding modern Russia. 
A Taste of Chekhov

A Taste of Chekhov

This compact volume is an introduction to the works of Chekhov the master storyteller, via nine stories spanning the last twenty years of his life.
Fearful Majesty

Fearful Majesty

This acclaimed biography of one of Russia’s most important and tyrannical rulers is not only a rich, readable biography, it is also surprisingly timely, revealing how many of the issues Russia faces today have their roots in Ivan’s reign.

About Us

Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.

Latest Posts

Our Contacts

Russian Life
73 Main Street, Suite 402
Montpelier VT 05602

802-223-4955