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In Russia NHL returns you. Kovalchuk staying in KHL.


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I know there's chatter in the off-season thread but this seems like it merits it's own and will take weeks to resolve itself. 

From TG-

@FriedgeHNIC said Ilya Kovalchuk wants to return to NHL and he can either play for Devils or needs approval of all teams to play elsewhere.

Per Elliotte Friedman-

Or whoever he wants to play for (and wants him) can work out a deal with NJ https://t.co/n0MRrzXDSi

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A few points:

1) Probably 99% of people who say "he's declined" haven't seen him play more than a game or three since 2012.

2) He's coming off a great season in the KHL. 32G, 46A in 60 games. Those stats on our current team (while I know KHL stats don't translate to NHL stats) would make him our best offensive player by far. 

3) Did he "screw" us? Maybe. It would definitely have been nice to have him around, and say what you want about his contract, we have more than enough cap room that the contract would not have hurt us at all. And, bringing him back, he's probably not getting what he got under the last deal. 

4) I would wait to see what he is capable of before writing him off just yet. If he is going to be competitive and can go for 25G , 30A in the NHL, I wouldn't be so quick to discard him. Don't get me wrong, I don't like what he did and I've been very vocal about how I feel about him. But our offense was garbage this year, I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss Kovy at this point. 

 

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2 hours ago, lazer said:

anyone who thinks he "screwed" the devils needs to put the kool aid down

 

 

Uh? He signed a contract for 15 years and then used a retirement loophole to go play somewhere else

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Hes not coming back to the Devils.  If they can get a pick for his rights I'm all for it. I don't see any way Shero brings him in here.  I think this is a leverage for a final big payday in the KHL.  If he wants to come back to NHL sincerely, it's to win a Cup and he's not getting that here in the next couple seasons.

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Dyblenko and Kovalchuk, keep bringing over the Ruuskies I'm all for it.

In all seriousness, if he actually wants to come back I'm all for it. Old scars will heal up pretty quickly once he's putting pucks in the back of the net wearing a Devils uniform again (Hell we all even embraced Gomez back in 2015), and I loved the man when he was here.

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I have watched his games every once in a while, ever since he signed with SKA and he has always had this "rivalry" thing going with Radulov as if who's the king of the KHL especially when their teams played against each other. Now, after winning the championship for the second time and seeing Radulov making a pretty successful return to the NHL, I'd imagine that it feeds his hunger to return too. That's just how I feel so don't quote me on that :ph34r:

Theres of course a chance, like some of you said that he only wants a new KHL contract and I'm sure he'd like to play in the olympics again...

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The scars will heal up real quickly if people are made to realize that Kovy did the team an enormous favor by leaving when he did only to return on a reasonable deal when he has a lot of good hockey left in him and the team might be on the upswing finally.

You might actually tell the fans that it was the plan all along but for what could be another circumvention penalty.

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13 minutes ago, coldply123 said:

Hes not coming back to the Devils.  If they can get a pick for his rights I'm all for it. I don't see any way Shero brings him in here.  I think this is a leverage for a final big payday in the KHL.  If he wants to come back to NHL sincerely, it's to win a Cup and he's not getting that here in the next couple seasons.

I would be upset if Shero was an "absolutely not" on Kovy coming here. It's something to think about. He may not get it here, but as an asset - I think the value he'd have isn't great as a trade right now. If he was serviceable, I can only see his value going higher at the deadline. If he was a dumpster fire, than whatever - we missed an opportunity. The real questions is what is his trade value today? If it's a 2017 or 18 1st Rounder - than that's one thing. I don't think that's the value today. I think it's a '18 2nd maybe and a prospect. Why not play him, we sure could use his him in the short run and see if we can turn it into a first.

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7 minutes ago, HellOnICE said:

I would be upset if Shero was an "absolutely not" on Kovy coming here. It's something to think about. He may not get it here, but as an asset - I think the value he'd have isn't great as a trade right now. If he was serviceable, I can only see his value going higher at the deadline. If he was a dumpster fire, than whatever - we missed an opportunity. The real questions is what is his trade value today? If it's a 2017 or 18 1st Rounder - than that's one thing. I don't think that's the value today. I think it's a '18 2nd maybe and a prospect. Why not play him, we sure could use his him in the short run and see if we can turn it into a first.

Shero was actually asked about it a couple of weeks ago.  Said the Devils would need to know what their rights were but noted that he was having a great season in the KHL.  Non-commital, as you would expect, but didn't sound like someone who wouldn't have him back based on principle.

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Not a big fan of Kovalchuk.  Jacques Lemaire did wonders with him turning him into a somewhat reliable 2 way player.  I do remember him doing extended shifts.  I do remember the Devils passing up good shots to get the puck to Kovalchuk for a not so good shot on the power play.  Can he play a 82 game season anymore?  I hope it's a ploy to get a big payday for the KHL.  The drama we endured from him over 2 summers was too much.  To me not worth it unless he is used to get draft picks,

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59 minutes ago, HellOnICE said:

I would be upset if Shero was an "absolutely not" on Kovy coming here. It's something to think about. He may not get it here, but as an asset - I think the value he'd have isn't great as a trade right now. If he was serviceable, I can only see his value going higher at the deadline. If he was a dumpster fire, than whatever - we missed an opportunity. The real questions is what is his trade value today? If it's a 2017 or 18 1st Rounder - than that's one thing. I don't think that's the value today. I think it's a '18 2nd maybe and a prospect. Why not play him, we sure could use his him in the short run and see if we can turn it into a first.

I don't see how the Devils get a 1st for Kovalchuk.  If Kovalchuk signs here for a year and does well, the Devils will probably look to keep him - they'll probably be doing well enough that they won't look to move him at the deadline.  And why would Kovalchuk sign somewhere where that could happen?  I would assume he would request an NTC.  Even if he doesn't, you're asking for a situation where Kovalchuk does well, the Devils don't, and they look to move him.  What are the odds that these things come together?

I'd rather take a pick and move on.  We just went through a time when the Devils relied on top player(s) who were well past their prime, guessing whether they could maintain their level of play for one more year.  I don't want a repeat of that.

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Ridiculous to say to yourself you wouldn't take a Kovy level talent for literally nothing. He did us a favor by leaving when he did. This team is as untalented as you will find at the NHL level, and to call the pipeline below average is being generous. Worst case, he's most likely worth more at the next trade deadline than he is right now. It would be downright stupid to move his rights over the summer, only to see his value double six months later. That's irresponsible asset management, something this ownership group is not in the business of.

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31 minutes ago, thecoffeecake said:

Ridiculous to say to yourself you wouldn't take a Kovy level talent for literally nothing. He did us a favor by leaving when he did. This team is as untalented as you will find at the NHL level, and to call the pipeline below average is being generous. Worst case, he's most likely worth more at the next trade deadline than he is right now. It would be downright stupid to move his rights over the summer, only to see his value double six months later. That's irresponsible asset management, something this ownership group is not in the business of.

That's probably too harsh. It's an average pipeline. And we'll be adding a top 10 pick to it this year. If it isn't average now it will be after the draft.

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The shorter schedules and less physical style of play probably helped preserve Kovalchuk a bit in Russia.

The price should be a 2nd rounder and we should only be trading him to a Western Conference team. I'm not letting him back into the league in 2017 for him to score a bunch of goals against the Devils right away.

Having the guy actually back and playing for us would not go over very well. Devils fans have long memories and guys who have wronged us are cold shouldered for a while. It took seemingly forever for Bruce Driver to get back into Devils fans good graces (I still don't think he is fully) 

I guess though on the plus side those guys can finally pull of the duct tape with "Ryder" in black magic marker on it off their jerseys

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10 minutes ago, '7' said:

The shorter schedules and less physical style of play probably helped preserve Kovalchuk a bit in Russia.

The price should be a 2nd rounder and we should only be trading him to a Western Conference team. I'm not letting him back into the league in 2017 for him to score a bunch of goals against the Devils right away.

Having the guy actually back and playing for us would not go over very well. Devils fans have long memories and guys who have wronged us are cold shouldered for a while. It took seemingly forever for Bruce Driver to get back into Devils fans good graces (I still don't think he is fully) 

I guess though on the plus side those guys can finally pull of the duct tape with "Ryder" in black magic marker on it off their jerseys

I think that's a b.s. statement, you sound bitter.  If he came back and started scoring again  (even at a lesser rate then 11-12), it will be fine and people will at least not care about the past. 

Bottom line is he's an instant improvement over dsp, cammy, Bennett, and then see if we can get better assets for him in the off-season, or keep him if he's really good.

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