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Abel to Yzerman

On The Kovalchuk Talk

from Gregg Krupa of the Detroit News,

The odds Ilya Kovalchuk wants to play on the Detroit Red Wings power play in 2018-19 are slim.

But not quite as poor as the chances the Wings will win the Stanley Cup, anytime soon.

The twin improbabilities limit any interest Kovalchuk has in signing with them, despite the run the Red Wings are taking at him.

Kovalchuk seeks a second NHL comeback in his prodigal career to experience what Alex Ovechkin experienced over the past week. He seeks the height of team performance, a Stanley Cup, to add to an Olympic gold medal, two golds in World Championships, one in a World Junior Championship and two Gagarin Cups, the championship trophy of the Kontinental Hockey League.

The Red Wings interest in Kovalchuk is about the opportunity for players Dylan Larkin, Anthony Mantha and Evgeny Svechnikov to play with the once supremely-talented 35-year-old, and removing some of the dead weight of the franchise from Henrik Zetterberg’s surgically-repaired back for the first season since Pavel Dastyuk decamped to the KHL.

continued

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Comments

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There is only one GM in the league who would be entertaining the thought of signing Kovalchuk to a tram like we have now. And we have that GM!
On top of that Kovalchuk is not nearly as good now as he was even 5 years ago.
He was banned from team Russia for one of the recent big tournaments. Does not strike me like a great locker room guy either. To me there is absolutely no reason to sign him. I am glad Kovy has no reason to sign here too.

Posted by VPalmer on 06/13/18 at 07:36 PM ET

Royal Grand Exalted PooBah's avatar

Washington might loose Carlson. Maybe he signs there to try and win another cup with Ovie?

Posted by Royal Grand Exalted PooBah from the basement of the Alamo on 06/13/18 at 08:29 PM ET

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Washington might loose Carlson. Maybe he signs there to try and win another cup with Ovie?

If he decides money isn’t the driving force, this is entirely possible. It would be like one of those bargain deals Pittsburgh and Chicago kept getting because the veterans knew it was good chance for a cup.

Posted by evileye on 06/14/18 at 12:05 PM ET

Alan's avatar

Does not strike me like a great locker room guy either. To me there is absolutely no reason to sign him. I am glad Kovy has no reason to sign here too.

He was always a good player here. He tried to cherry-pick in the early part of his career, and it didn’t always end well. He learned a lot under Bob Hartley, and despite the team being swept by the Rangers, he was the only player who really gave a damn when the Thrashers went to the playoffs in 2007.

I have no idea what became of him after he went to Russia, so it’s entirely possible he became a bad locker room presence. While he was here though, the worst I could say about him is he had a bit of a temper.

I somehow doubt the Wings manage to sign him, but I don’t think it’d be a bad thing.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 06/15/18 at 02:34 AM ET

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Does not strike me like a great locker room guy either.

I think this is a fallacy. When Lou Lamarillo describes him as one of the most competitive players he’s ever been around and was eager to sign him long term I think you can be certain he was a good character guy.

He’s always had a temper and played with an edge and has been known to get frustrated when he feels he is underperforming or his team is. Those aren’t really bad traits, just shows he is passionate about the game.

I’d be really surprised if he ended up in Detroit. But if he did for a short-term, I think he could be a positive influence.

Posted by evileye on 06/15/18 at 08:49 AM ET

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Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com