As the NHL locked out its players, Nail Yakupov, taken first overall in the 2012 NHL Draft by the Edmonton Oilers, flew back to his home town of Nizhnekamsk and agreed to a contract with the local KHL team, Neftekhimik.

He was scheduled to be in the starting lineup in Neftekhimik's next game in Nizhni Novgorod. But that's likely not going to happen, because the IIHF is refusing to issue Yakupov's transfer card to the KHL club.

It's something that could affect other NHL players trying to spend the lockout in Europe.


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