Archive for the ‘Atlanta Thrashers’ Category

Ilya Kovalchuk: Was He Worth The Price The Devils Paid?

September 14th, 2010 2 Comments

On February 4th, 2010, the New Jersey Devils made a huge splash on the trade market when they acquired Ilya Kovalchuk and Anssi Salmela from the Atlanta Thrashers in exchange for defenseman Johnny Oduya, rookie forward Niclas Bergfors, prospect Patrice Cormier and New Jersey’s 2010 first round draft pick. Prior to the deal, the Thrashers organization were extremely diligent in trying to sign their franchise player to a long term contract and were said to have offered the Russian sniper a 12-year contract that would have seen Kovalchuk earn a reported $101 million. Unable to sign Kovalchuk, Thrashers general manager Don Waddell made what many NHL experts said was a moderately good deal—a deal, that in hindsight, just keeps getting better. How is it that trading your franchise player for a mid-tier defenseman, a rookie forward, a prospect and a


Ilya Kovalchuk Deal Accepted By The NHL

September 4th, 2010 No Comments

In what was becoming a never ending story, it appears as if the NHL and NHLPA have finally come to an agreement on Ilya Kovalchuk’s contract. Rumors were swirling this morning that the NHL and NHLPA were working on an amendment to the rules within the Collective Bargaining Agreement that would allow for the Kovalchuk deal to be accepted, which is exactly what has transpired. In a move that is unprecedented, it appears as if the NHL and NHLPA worked together to make the amendment to the rules that govern long term contracts. Under the new rules, it is believed that several loopholes of the prior agreement have been closed, allowing Kovalchuk’s 15-year, $100 million deal to be accepted by league standards. While this newest deal is for slightly less money than the 17-year, $102 million deal, there is no


Ilya Kovalchuk: Decision On Contract Delayed Until Friday

September 1st, 2010 No Comments

Dan Rosen of is reporting that the Ilya Kovalchuk saga now has a deadline of 5 p.m. ET Friday, at which point the NHL will either accept or reject what is believed to be a 15-year, $100 million contract between Kovalchuk and the New Jersey Devils. The NHL made all kinds of headlines when it challenged the Devils original contract offer to Kovalchuk which would have paid the talented Russian sniper a total of $102 million over 17-years. The NHL made its case on the suspicion that the original contract was guilty of a “circumvention” of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, which an independent arbitrator later agreed with. If the latest contract is rejected, its back to the drawing board for the Devils, who have been working closely with the NHLPA and NHL in order to facilitate a deal that


Toronto Maple Leafs: Season May Be Won or Lost Down the Middle

August 17th, 2010 No Comments

As much as it pains me to write this, Toronto Maple Leaf fans look to be headed for another long/frustrating season in 2010-11. While the Leafs will be a tougher team to play against, if general manager Brian Burke hits the floor running with the likes of Tyler Bozak, Nazem Kadri, Mikhail Grabovski, and Christian Hanson down the middle they will lose more battles and more games than they win. Want proof? Here is a sample of the top three centres from the top eight Eastern Conference teams as projected by The Hockey News: Boston Bruins: Marc Savard, David Krejci, Patrice Bergeron  Buffalo Sabres: Derek Roy, Tim Connolly, Paul Gaustad Montreal Canadiens: Scott Gomez, Tomas Plekanec, Dustin Boyd  Ottawa Senators: Jason Spezza, Mike Fisher, Peter Regin Pittsburgh Penguins: Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Jordan Staal Philadelphia Flyers: Mike Richards, Jeff Carter,


Tomas Kaberle: The Five Best Fits for Kabby

August 15th, 2010 1 Comment

The jury is still out on whether or not Toronto Maple Leafs veteran defensemen Tomas Kaberle will be traded, but with just over 24 hours to go before Kaberle’s no-trade clause kick’s back in, there seems to be a number of teams that are interested in Kaberle’s services. Leafs general manager Brian Burke has said that he would prefer to bring in a top six forward that can help elevate the Leafs into a playoff position as early as this season. But he said he would consider a “futures package” that may include one or more prospects and/or draft picks coming to Toronto. While there has been plenty of speculation as to which teams appear to be interested in Kaberle, there has been no confirmation. Of that teams that may be interested in Kaberle only a few may offer a


Ilya Kovalchuk a Free Agent After NHL Wins Arbitration Hearing

August 9th, 2010 No Comments

Numerous on-line publications are reporting that Independent arbitrator Richard Bloch has ruled on the 17-year, $102 million Ilya Kovalchuk contract and the that NHL has won it’s case. As a result, Kovalchuk’s deal is now null and void and the talented Russian is now a free agent…again! The NHL had challenged the Kovalchuk deal on the pretense that the contract circumvented the NHL’s CBA. While many suspected the NHL would have difficulty proving their case, it appears as if Bloch, like so many other NHL fans, was able to see the Kovalchuk deal for what it was—a joke! Kovalchuk’s 17-year, $102 million deal would have seen the sniper retire at the age of 44. Needless to say, nobody was buying that Kovalchuk would play until he was 44, in fact, given the deal was largely front-loaded, it was thought that

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