JWomp

Rumor from Russian hockey writer: Kovy considering staying in KHL

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This is a lot of discussion and gloom and doom for a guy who hasn't missed any time at all yet. If he misses any games, I'll be mad, but until that time who cares what he decides to do. He's staying in game shape and not abandoning the fans when he doesn't need to instead of coming home and twiddling his thumbs waiting for the CBA to get ratified and for camp to start. He's not on the Devils' time right now, he has no reason to leave yet.

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98% of players sign lifetime contracts? Could've fooled me.

Most of them get more than two or three offers to decide from though. It's a bit harder imo deciding between 'twenty' teams (unless you already had one in mind) the way Parise and Suter did this offseason, or between ten-twelve teams on a still relatively long-term deal like 5-7 years.

Edited by NJDevs4978

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TG

By the way, I reached out to Ilya Kovalchuk's agent, Jay Grossman, again last night and he declined to comment on the situation.

ok...i dont care how optimistic we can be... Kovy said himself that maybe he'd stay in Russia after the lockout a few months ago... now so far he NEVER said he'd come back he just said "we'll see"... and his agent doesnt want to comment on it...

its looking pretty bad when you don't look at it with blinders on.

Todd Cordell

SKA GM, and former Devil, Alexei Kasatonov says he will do everything possible to keep Ilya Kovalchuk from returning to New Jersey.

i fvcking hope Lou is on the phone trying to make something happen here and not just standing there for something to happen with the situation before its too late

Edited by SterioDesign

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It'd be devastating for NJ if Kovy didn't show up, but there are some positives:

A) his contract sucks and it'd be voided

B) we'd probably get that first back and maybe the third

C) we could get Drouin or Mackinnon (jk)

That being said, his ass better be in NJ by Monday

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I havent really posted a ton of my support for Kovy during last year and him getting the big C on his jersey but this drama is swinging me over to giving that responsibility to someone who wants to play for our team. I dont see a reason why he cant openly respect his Devils teammates and fans and just be up front with the situation.<br />

Edited by Devlin

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It'd be devastating for NJ if Kovy didn't show up, but there are some positives:

A) his contract sucks

How does his contract suck? His contract is fantastic. Having a player of his caliber at a $6.66 million cap hit is amazing, especially as salaries continue to skyrocket. Right now, Kovy has the 32nd highest cap hit in the league. For a guy who finished in the top 5 in the league in points last year, that's a good deal in my eyes.

I havent really posted a ton of my support for Kovy during last year and him getting the big C on his jersey but this drama is swinging me over to giving that responsibility to someone who wants to play for our team. I

We don't know that he doesn't want to play for the Devils. He has never said that. It's all speculation with no real merit. That could change, but as of now, I think we should all give Kovy the benefit of the doubt.

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We don't know that he doesn't want to play for the Devils. He has never said that. It's all speculation with no real merit. That could change, but as of now, I think we should all give Kovy the benefit of the doubt.

Trust me...Im still a big fan and supporter of Kovy but like I said, I wish he would be vocal and temper the speculations surrounding all of this.

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How does his contract suck? His contract is fantastic. Having a player of his caliber at a $6.66 million cap hit is amazing, especially as salaries continue to skyrocket. Right now, Kovy has the 32nd highest cap hit in the league. For a guy who finished in the top 5 in the league in points last year, that's a good deal in my eyes.

We don't know that he doesn't want to play for the Devils. He has never said that. It's all speculation with no real merit. That could change, but as of now, I think we should all give Kovy the benefit of the doubt.

Get back to me in 6-8 years. It's great at the moment, but we all know it will blow up at the end. If he retires after year 12 (after he made all his money) we'll still be on the hook for like 4 million until the term is complete

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The cap might be a zillion dollars by the time Kovy's contract becomes an albatross.

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How does his contract suck? His contract is fantastic. Having a player of his caliber at a $6.66 million cap hit is amazing, especially as salaries continue to skyrocket. Right now, Kovy has the 32nd highest cap hit in the league. For a guy who finished in the top 5 in the league in points last year, that's a good deal in my eyes.

The Devils will be well below this year's cap ($14M below this year's), next year's cap (probably - hard to imagine them spending $10M more next year than this year), and each subsequent cap. Cap space just is not an issue for them anymore with teams like Toronto and Montreal skewing the cap upwards for everyone. In that light, having a guy signed for 13 more years is not a great deal. If the Devils could have Kovalchuk signed at a $9M cap hit for the next 6 years it would be a much better deal.

Kasatonov's speech gives me hope, because to me it sounds like he is trying to put pressure on Ilya to stay in Russia by making it public. If it was a done deal, I don't know why he'd say something like that.

Edited by Triumph

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The Devils will be well below this year's cap ($14M below this year's), next year's cap (probably - hard to imagine them spending $10M more next year than this year), and each subsequent cap. Cap space just is not an issue for them anymore with teams like Toronto and Montreal skewing the cap upwards for everyone. In that light, having a guy signed for 13 more years is not a great deal. If the Devils could have Kovalchuk signed at a $9M cap hit for the next 6 years it would be a much better deal.

If the Devils will be well below future salary caps, how is the Kovy deal detrimental? If the team isn't going to spend up to the cap anyway, who cares if we have dead cap space if Kovy retires early?

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Todd Cordell

Wow RT @D_LEED: Datsyuk, Malkin, Kovalchuk and Ovechkin were guaranteed $30 million each by Russian President Vladimir Putin to stay in KHL.

whats scary is that if they were willing to throw 120million to keep those guys... since there's only one who "may" want to stay... im scare to know how much they'd throw at him now

Edited by SterioDesign

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if he stays, that would be the end of russian hockey in nhl. no team will risk a contract with them again. so he better be responsible for aspiring russian players' sake.

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"I want to stay in St. Petersburg but I have contractual obligations in the NHL, which will be hard to break" - Kovalchuk to Sport-Express

that statement just cost him captaincy if he comes back in the NHL

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"I want to stay in St. Petersburg but I have contractual obligations in the NHL, which will be hard to break" - Kovalchuk to Sport-Express

that statement just cost him captaincy if he comes back in the NHL

i feel like that is missing some of kovy's words. He probably said more but these reporters cut out the rest to make it seem this way

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Todd Cordell

Wow RT @D_LEED: Datsyuk, Malkin, Kovalchuk and Ovechkin were guaranteed $30 million each by Russian President Vladimir Putin to stay in KHL.

whats scary is that if they were willing to throw 120million to keep those guys... since there's only one who "may" want to stay... im scare to know how much they'd throw at him now

I don't know if that source is reliable or where that information came from. But it wouldn't surprise me since Putin is playing with the Russian government's money and has nobody to be accountable to.

Edited by Chuck the Duck

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"I want to stay in St. Petersburg but I have contractual obligations in the NHL, which will be hard to break" - Kovalchuk to Sport-Express

that statement just cost him captaincy if he comes back in the NHL

Not really, he is talking to Russia media. What do you expect him to say? "I've been using you for money while my league sorts it's sh!t out?"

All of this to me seems like much ado about nothing.

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Not really, he is talking to Russia media. What do you expect him to say? "I've been using you for money while my league sorts it's sh!t out?"

All of this to me seems like much ado about nothing.

I don't know if I would take it soo lightly. I fully believe that the KHL and Russian nationalist would do everythign in their power to make a national splash by keeping a star like Kovy. I don't think they have ever made it a secret that they wish to be the premier hockey league instead of the NHL. I can imagine that there is tremendous pressure from all levels (from the President to the local fans) in Russia on Kovy to become a national hero and flip the bird to the NHL. Certainly if you take a Russian politicians short terms perspective, why wouldn't they try to press him.

This all being said, I would only put the chance of that happening at 5-10% tops as I have to imagine Kovy can anticipate the blowback and the fact that Olympics and any future NHL play would be out of the question.

Edited by newarkdev01

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Clarification: Kovalchuk spoke of this year only. The phrasing leads to believe he'd like to finish season w/ SKA, return to NJD in the fall

I can understand it... He start something with them and Kovy is an emotional guys.... I am the same type of guy, i have no prob if he play ska till the end of the year then come back... That being said i would like him to get his ass monday in Jersey( But i can understand)

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If the Devils will be well below future salary caps, how is the Kovy deal detrimental? If the team isn't going to spend up to the cap anyway, who cares if we have dead cap space if Kovy retires early?

Because he might be awful in a few years, and then the Devils have all kinds of money tied up in an awful player.

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i took that statement from slava malund the guy who report earlier the thing about kovy wanting to stay...

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I can understand it... He start something with them and Kovy is an emotional guys.... I am the same type of guy, i have no prob if he play ska till the end of the year then come back... That being said i would like him to get his ass monday in Jersey( But i can understand)

I understand that Kovy might not want to abandon SKA, but come on. There is no excuse if he ignores his NHL contract and doesn't come back until the fall. I would be VERY angry at him. He knew that SKA was a temporary thing during the lockout. Now that the lockout is over, he should be coming back with a smile on his face.

Because he might be awful in a few years, and then the Devils have all kinds of money tied up in an awful player.

Well it shouldn't matter if the Devils are well below the cap.

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Because he might be awful in a few years, and then the Devils have all kinds of money tied up in an awful player.

It's been a while but since we still don't have a schedule or ratified CBA to talk about, I think I remember Kovy's contract being structures with buyouts half way through or some crap like that to prevent the dead money/cap hit. Honesty, its been a while so I could be way off.

As for the whole staying in Russia thing, I think we take for granted the pressure that the hometown star (such as Parise) feels to come back. Kovy is an imigrant that never really settled in Atlanta and his wife is a star back home so I can understand why he would be torn on his decision. Don't get me wrong if he decides to stay for the season or forever I would still be furious but I could at least understand it.

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Why does it seem like players and coaches only get homesick playing for us? First Sutter, then Parise and now Kovy. Doesn't even include Raf who was more or less given a gold watch before going to Detroit.

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I understand that Kovy might not want to abandon SKA, but come on. There is no excuse if he ignores his NHL contract and doesn't come back until the fall. I would be VERY angry at him. He knew that SKA was a temporary thing during the lockout. Now that the lockout is over, he should be coming back with a smile on his face.

I don't think any player should be coming back to the NHL with a smile on their face. The NHL used its billions of dollars as leverage against the players' union to extract money that they had ostensibly promised the players, and it canceled games and paychecks to ensure that this would be the final result. The KHL doesn't have this - sure, it has owners not paying players and a myriad of other, probably more evil and shady business.

It's kind of impossible to know what Kovalchuk actually thinks, because he's such an experienced media prevaricator. If he's in Russia, he wants to play there, when he's here, this is team.

Well it shouldn't matter if the Devils are well below the cap.

The Devils have a budget - Kovalchuk is amount for an enormous portion of it right now. If his contract goes bad, the Devils can't just say 'whoops, let's use this $11M elsewhere' - no, it's tied up in his contract. If he wants to keep playing in the NHL, he'll do so, and short of buying it out, which would run well into the late 2020s at least (and still cost a decent sum), the Devils are stuck with him.

4978: You don't pay attention to other teams as close, that's part of why. If Malkin goes UFA, Russia is going to make a huge push to sign him. Naslund went back to Sweden. Lidstrom was rumored to go back to Sweden for literally 10 years, and even now he'd still be one of the best defensemen in the league if he played. Jordan Staal just arranged to play with his brother, refusing a contract offer from Pittsburgh. And so on and so forth, I can do this for a long time (Pronger left Edmonton, Smyth wanted to come back to Edmonton, both forced trades to accomplish that)

Edited by Triumph

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