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Russian World Junior Team Reportedly Kicked Off Return Flight by Police

According to multiple eyewitness reports, the Russian World Junior team was escorted off of their return flight home by police for refusing to comply with Air Canada's mask policy.
Matvei Michkov

The 2022 World Junior Championship might have been canceled, but the drama is far from over. 

According to multiple eyewitness reports that surfaced on Twitter on Friday evening, the Russian junior team was apparently escorted off of their return flight home from Calgary by police due to repeated occurrences of unruly behavior. 

What led to this removal, according to reports, were multiple instances of the players refusing to wear masks, attempting to smoke cigarettes while on the plane, and ignoring flight attendants when repeatedly asked not to. 

On Saturday, the Calgary Police Service confirmed to the Calgary Herald that the Russian junior team was indeed removed from the flight for refusing to comply with Air Canada's mask policy. 

This development has now led to questions regarding just how closely players who attended this year's World Juniors adhered to health and safety protocols prior to the event being canceled due to multiple COVID-19 cases. 

According to TSN's Gord Miller, "anecdotal accounts from people who were there say they weren't", which would paint the event's unfortunate fate in a completely different light. 

Regardless, it appears as if the Russian squad will have to wait a tad longer before making their way home. 

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