Ilya Kovalchuk Considering Staying in Russia Despite NHL Lockout Ending

January 8th, 2013 by donald wood Leave a reply »
New Jersey Devils star forward Ilya Kovalchuk is reportedly considering staying in Russia to play professional hockey instead of returning to the NHL now that the lockout is over, according to Slava Malamud of Russia’s Sport-Express:

Kovalchuk says, 'I will need to read the new agreement' before he decides what to do next. So there... #NJDevils

— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) January 8, 2013 SKA brass, which includes people from Putin's inner circle, is quite friendly with Kovalchuk and has never hidden its desire to keep him.

— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) January 8, 2013 In my personal opinion, it's more posturing. But it's certainly possible SKA is trying to figure something out.

— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) January 8, 2013 The mass exodus of players from the Kontinental Hockey League in Russia back to North America in preparation for the start of the NHL’s shortened season is almost complete, but there is still a chance that a star of Kovalchuk’s magnitude would breach his contract in order to stay in his home country.

With Kovalchuk’s front-loaded contract being exactly ...

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