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Kovalev Plays Host in Brighton Beach

by Staff Writer / New York Rangers

He may be thousands of miles away from his homeland, but Rangers forward Alex Kovalev certainly knows where to go if he is looking for a touch of Russian culture in New York. Home to more than 15,000 Russian speaking residents of New York City, Brighton Beach (an oceanside community located east of Coney Island) is just that place.

Recently, Kovalev and his wife Eugina, who occasionally made the trip from Pittsburgh to Brighton Beach on off-days while he was playing with the Penguins, introduced 6'-5" New York Liberty forward/center Elena Baronova to the Brooklyn neighborhood.

A newcomer to the Liberty this summer after spending last season in her native Russia, Baronova followed Kovalev's lead as they made stops at select locations such as a Russian book and music store, the International Market (a Russian specialty food market) and finally to dinner at Cafe Arbak, one of many Russian restaurants in Brighton Beach.

"This is a great place for me and my family to come and experience some of the cultural parts of Russian life that have been a part of my life since childhood," said Kovalev.

"It's nice to be able to share our Brighton Beach experiences with Elena, who is new to the city. We're sure she'll grown to like this place and spend lots of time here as well."

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