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#1 Mitico12

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 11:03 AM

OK- so here we go -

I've watched the past two games and in particular Ilya Kovalchuk. I've seen him cough up the puck and "almost" cough up the puck way too many times in the past two games.

It appears that Kovy feels the following:

1. He needs to do more by himself to show his worth?
2. He is playing at a different speed than guys like Josefsson and Palmieri, who just can't keep up with him?
3. He is in a world of his own where he feels he "can make" mistakes without consequences
4. Or, he just doesn't give a hoot about the team game?

It's funny, because my dad, who basically watched a fistful of hockey games in his life (he's a soccer guy) watched the third period with me yesterday. When he saw Kovy rush up the ice a few times, he yelled in Italian (as if he were watching a soccer game!) "PASS THE BALL you idiot"..."SHOOT THE BALL you imbacile"

Of course, my dad thinks that hockey is played with a ball, but that's acceptable from a 72 year old guy that has bad vision...lol

Do you guys concur?
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#2 Risky

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 11:31 AM

I think this double-shifting nonsense puts too much of a spotlight on him. I also think he currently outclasses his linemates and needs a Zajac to keep up with him. JJ is good, but he's not at Kovalchuk's level yet. IK's best asset is the way he draws attention. If you have someone else dangerous on the ice with him who can take the pass when IK gets double-teamed, we'll see a lot of production out of that line. The one-man sniper routine may have worked in the 1980s, but it won't with today's goaltending and defense.
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#3 overtime98

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 11:31 AM

It appears that Kovy feels the following:

1. He needs to do more by himself to show his worth? wouldnt doubt he feels this way
2. He is playing at a different speed than guys like Josefsson and Palmieri, who just can't keep up with him? probably true as well.
3. He is in a world of his own where he feels he "can make" mistakes without consequences. true
4. Or, he just doesn't give a hoot about the team game? false.



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#4 Zubie#8

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 11:32 AM

When he plays with two players who cant rush up the ice by themselves and cant make one decent pass to him then yes he feels like he has to do it himself. He needs a play making center cause kovy isnt a play maker hes a finisher.
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#5 njdevil26

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 11:35 AM

My take on Kovalchuk:

When he first got traded here, everyone and their mother immediately wrote him off as a selfish Russian who can't play defense.

I didn't agree. He played for eight seasons with terrible Atlanta teams and no need for him to every play defense. The entire game plan was to give Kovy the puck. I think he's come a real long way since that.

The thing that really bothers me is when people say that he's selfish and doesn't care about the team... or that he's not liked in the locker room. He may have been looked at that way in the beginning because he was a shot in the arm for a team that couldn't put the puck in the net to save their lives. I've watched Kovy closely in his 111 reg season games with the Devils and 5 playoff games. Seems to me as if the other guy on the team really like him. I always see smiles, jokes between he and his teammates, and so on. Anything otherwise is just speculation by media and other fans to try to stir the pot. Even though it took a little while, Kovy is learning to play defense. Just last night he was used on the penalty kill. I would say it's pretty tough to teach a player to play a completely different style of hockey after being used to one system for his entire career.

People are quick to write him off if he doesn't score 50 goals and 100 points. I would be happy with 35-45 goals and 75-90 points from him. He's not going to score 100 points while on a team that has skilled forwards like the Devils. He is going to really help the development of Jacob Josefson as well.

Also, when I met him, twice, he was one of the nicest guys on the team. Sometimes after home games he stops to sign autographs as well. I've also noticed he's real good with the young guys on the team. Last night while the team was celebrating the win on the ice I saw him talk to and joke around with Larsson, Tedenby, and Josefson and give them pats on the back.


Anyone questioning this guy is looking for something that's not there. He's not going to score three goals every night... he's a player that we as fans are pretty damn lucky to be able to watch night in and night out for the rest of his career. I would have done that trade over and over and over again if I could.

So to to answer your questions signore,

1. I'm sure he still feels the need to show his worth after being boo'd a lot at the beginning of last season. He's also referred to as the "100 million dollar man" which is unfair.

2. This could partially be true. Josefson is just starting to be a regular... he's a young kid. "Hey kid, welcome to the NHL. Your job is to be the center for one of the fastest and craziest wingers in the game. Good luck." It's a tall order. Palmieri is also young. It'll take them some time to learn where Kovy is going to be on the ice. He's a little unorthodox but they'll get it.

3. I don't think he feels that way at all. It's noticeable when at the game live how upset he is and mad when he gives the puck up or a play he's doing doesn't work.

4. Not true at all.
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#6 devlman

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 11:36 AM

He NEEDS to play/place the puck down low much much more. Too often, Kovy predictably retreats with the puck to the blue line - his happy spot. I want to see him use his big body cycling down low with Palms and Josefson. His ice time needs to come down some, too.

Edited by devlman, 14 October 2011 - 11:37 AM.

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#7 Pepperkorn

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 11:41 AM

I think DeBoer knows how sometimes you have to play through stuff to get it through.

For Kovalchuk it's little lapses in concentration. Personally I think he's not trying to solo it -- in fact he's trying NOT to. So he stops and tries to get a more global view of the ice while moving the puck forward -- but for a split second he stops like Duhhh where am I now? But I think he's thinking where is everyone? It's just a misunderstanding of the System. I feel that Deboer thinks this stuff can fall into place out of necessity. This explains his take with both Kovalchuk and Clarkson.

The main point is WE as observers have to all start out fresh.. We need to let all the past go and see things in the moment as DeBoer is. Our preconceptions are effecting our sight as well - our take on a game or a coaching choice. But things are different now, you know? We have to allow for that at this stage of the season.

If powering through doesn't work then there will be changes on shifts and lines etc.

It's so odd how Sykora is so much more in tune wiht the goings on. I'm not saying he's perfect by any means -- but he's the guy on the right road moving forward in the correct direction. I dont think I ever appreciated the room he can give himself and his line. It's just a literal skating path just modified out and open and airy with space to see and find and move without working for it.

Clarkson is too on top of everything and Kovalchuk is too far ahead mentally so he falls behind (weird but you know what I mean if you care even).

Clarkson - fear of being slow. Kovalchuk fear of trying to do too much alone.

Fans -- fear that it's all the same old same old :evil: It's not though. Not yet anyhow.
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#8 SterioDesign

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 12:20 PM

if you want to get me started, use the "100 millions man" comment or the "how many cups do you guys have? we have 24!" comments...

totally unfair to Kovalchuk, i mean... who called Ovechkin the 124millions man when he was struggling last season? And there's a lot of players who's gonna easily make 100m also but just not in their current contrat

once you used one of those 2 comments with me, youre considered an ignorant lol
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#9 SterioDesign

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 12:23 PM

also i think we shouldnt panic too much about Kovy's risk taking... i mean he's a forward, we have a decent defence and goal goaltending, so there's room for error and we can correct sometimes

on the other hand look at Montreal, Subban is their best player, he's a dman and he's even more risky than Kovy. When Subban is creating a turnover or not coming back well its Gill on a 2 on 1 or wtv lol

but still Subban = God in mtl
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#10 Random Poster

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 12:43 PM

Dude. Really?


He's on a roll today, isn't he?
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#11 MantaRay

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 12:47 PM

The problem with Kovalchuk is he is built more for open/european/pond hockey where he can use the space of the ice to do everything himself. Devils hockey or just winning hockey is about patience and waiting for the opposition to make mistakes. Kovy feeds the opposition chances.

He is definately feeling the pressure to justify his contract and trying to do so much and we don't really have the defense to back him up and it doesn't matter which forwards he plays with.

Double shifting him on the PP point is futile. He belongs near the circle to free up space at the point and the slot.

This is still Parise and Elias's team.
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#12 adam85491

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 12:47 PM

sorry, but after reading 5 million posts of people BITCHING AND MOANING about the dude responsible for clinching two games in a row for us...it gets VERY old.
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#13 Random Poster

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 12:55 PM

sorry, but after reading 5 million posts of people BITCHING AND MOANING about the dude responsible for clinching two games in a row for us...it gets VERY old.


Because the dude has some very obvious flaws in his game for a "superstar" player and when those flaws come out he looks very, very bad. When he's good, he's very good no denying that, but to merely overlook the bad with this guy is not being honest and objective.

He's a high risk, high reward type of player and there are nights he'll win a game by himself and nights he'll be a goat. That's what you get. Two games in a row, Hedberg had to bail him out of brain dead shifts with the puck. When people point out obvious flaws in his game (which are all valid) it has nothing to do with his contract, his personality or reverence to fans.
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#14 Colorado Rockies 1976

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 01:00 PM

Because the dude has some very obvious flaws in his game for a "superstar" player and when those flaws come out he looks very, very bad. When he's good, he's very good no denying that, but to merely overlook the bad with this guy is not being honest and objective.

He's a high risk, high reward type of player and there are nights he'll win a game by himself and nights he'll be a goat. That's what you get. Two games in a row, Hedberg had to bail him out of brain dead shifts with the puck. When people point out obvious flaws in his game (which are all valid) it has nothing to do with his contract, his personality or reverence to fans.


+1, and to add to it, he hasn't been very good often enough to offset the flaws...not in a Devils' uniform, anyway.
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#15 Onddeck

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 01:03 PM

Ok so its easy to say he does this because he doesn't have anybody to keep up with him. so he feels that, to utilize his speed, he must go at his pace. but im sure the case was the same in ATL, he didnt really have anyone to keep up with him either did he?? i dont think we can point the finger anywhere specific here

on a different note, this is how i feel: he has said before he had been working on forcing the puck through the zone by himself. last year we saw this become affective, too. right now, maybe we do see more of that game play but, 1) maybe its the beginning of the season jitters, he'll focus more on not doing it. and 2) he is still our most talented offensive weapon and, honestly, i dont have that much of a problem with a playmaker tying to make a play. Although some may argue that it bputs us out of position when he gives the puck away, he is still always putting pressure on the opponent's D. Work on it a little, Kovy, but I dont have that much of a problem with him doing what he does
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#16 Pepperkorn

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 01:08 PM

The problem with Kovalchuk is he is built more for open/european/pond hockey where he can use the space of the ice to do everything himself. Devils hockey or just winning hockey is about patience and waiting for the opposition to make mistakes.

This is still Parise and Elias's team.



See this is an old paradigm Manta. Devils hockey can no longer rely so heavily on WAITING for mistakes by the other team. Then you get sucked into their game. You know -- as Lemaire would probably tell you it never WAS waiting for mistakes. You're patient for your right chance. You keep an eye out to capitalize on mistakes. But teams aren't making big mistakes with regularity now. It just LOOKED like the Devils were playing that way because other teams weren't as skilled - or were skilled differently. Things have changed. You HAVE to let go of that dude.

and I'm so glad you realize this is Elias and Parise's team. It was never Kovalchuk's team nor was it ever meant to be. Value isn't always added owning the team style - value is sometimes found stretching and going in and out of it when required. Kovalchuk can't do that until he understand exactly what the System is about.

It's actually a little amusing... from the looks and sound of it, both you and Kovalchuk are on the same (antiquated Devils) page. And you BOTH need to get on the right one!
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#17 Pepperkorn

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 01:13 PM

Ok so its easy to say he does this because he doesn't have anybody to keep up with him. so he feels that, to utilize his speed, he must go at his pace. but im sure the case was the same in ATL, he didnt really have anyone to keep up with him either did he?? i dont think we can point the finger anywhere specific here

on a different note, this is how i feel: he has said before he had been working on forcing the puck through the zone by himself. last year we saw this become affective, too. right now, maybe we do see more of that game play but, 1) maybe its the beginning of the season jitters, he'll focus more on not doing it. and 2) he is still our most talented offensive weapon and, honestly, i dont have that much of a problem with a playmaker tying to make a play. Although some may argue that it bputs us out of position when he gives the puck away, he is still always putting pressure on the opponent's D. Work on it a little, Kovy, but I dont have that much of a problem with him doing what he does



I basically see it the same way - I think it's going to click for Kovalchuk. I kind of feel this is helpful for him. He's got some room to fail and some competition to get his ass in gear. We as fans shouldn't expect failure, and finger waggle at every lapse. We should enjoy watching his growth - seeking it -- I mean that's what's so fun about hockey.
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#18 Onddeck

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 01:15 PM

I basically see it the same way - I think it's going to click for Kovalchuk. I kind of feel this is helpful for him. He's got some room to fail and some competition to get his ass in gear. We as fans shouldn't expect failure, and finger waggle at every lapse. We should enjoy watching his growth - seeking it -- I mean that's what's so fun about hockey.

thank youuuu, definitely. give him his room a little bit, he's a SCORER
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#19 Mitico12

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 02:55 PM

the dude is the best player on the team. all the nay sayers can go suck a fat cock. quit over-analyzing.


When your so called "best player" starts racking up GWGs and GWG assists to no end, withough needlessly holding on to the puck and cutting accross his own crease while being pressured, then you're comment will have validity...wink, wink, wink ;-)

Otherwise, I'm scared that Kovy will be the "coveted" seat seller every franchise wants but that never turns out a cup winner...

Edited by Mitico12, 14 October 2011 - 03:00 PM.

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#20 Quinn01

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 03:07 PM

the dude is the best player on the team. all the nay sayers can go suck a fat cock. quit over-analyzing.


Why do you even bother posting here? You almost NEVER have anything constructive to say.


It seems to me that Kovalchuk needs to re-evaluate his game still since coming here. Not only does he need to be able to set plays up, I.E give and goes, but he needs other players on this team to also set him up. Larsson does a good job at that on the PP, the infamous knee on the ice rip from the blue line that Kovy does. He not only has to develop himself into a bit of a play maker but have other players set him up for plays. Thats how I see it.
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