Kukla's Korner

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Counting On Kovalchuk

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Kovalchuk had waited 10 years for this moment to come, and with his team headed to the Stanley Cup finals, he was able to finally bask in the achievement.

Dogged by doubts and labels since breaking into the league as a talented 18-year-old Russian in 2001, Kovalchuk is on the verge of silencing one of his most lingering critiques.

He’s four wins away from a Stanley Cup championship.

“I think it’s the biggest event I’ve ever been in in my career, so I’m just going to enjoy it and play as hard as I can,” he said.

It’s been a renaissance year for Kovalchuk, whose 83-point regular-season reaffirmed his status as one of the league’s most potent offensive threats, but not just in terms of pure production.

His league-leading 18-point playoff contribution makes it tough for any detractor to box him into the typical labels often reserved for those with last names difficult to pronounce: enigmatic, mercurial, selfish.

He has led the team when it counts.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ilya+kovalchuk

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com