Thursday, 4 February 2010

Everybody Blogs Kovalchuk

There's your story for the next three days: Ilya Kovalchuk is now a New Jersey Devil. There are already dozens of stories on blogs and sports sites that talk about how Dvils' GM Lou Lamoriello fleeced Thrashers' GM Don Waddell, and, to some degree, you could make that case. The return of Oduya, Bergfors, Cormier, and a first-round pick seems a little low for the scoring prowess that Kovalchuk brings to the table, but this is a rental by all definitions. If GM Lou wants to sign Kovalchuk in the off-season, there will have to be some salary moves to make that happen. Since there will be a bazillion sites talking about Kovalchuk, I'm simply going in another direction. No Kovalchuk trade talk from me aside from posting a few links. Let's get at it.

  • Blueland Blog talks a little about the trade. Kukla runs down the Twitter back-and-forth. Leahy posts the info on Puck Daddy, while Wyshynski's view of the trade has him already awarding the Stanley Cup to his beloved Devils. He could be right, but enough of the trade chatter. The trade happened. Let's play hockey.
  • Something interesting brought up on Uni Watch Blog today. Ray Whitney has been bucking the corporate trend by altering his jersey. There's no NHL logo on his collar. From my estimation, he's been doing this since December 2008. Can anyone shed any light on why he may be doing this? Is it a comfort thing with his jersey? Stick tap to Matt Kuekes for finding this gem.
  • March 12, 2010 will see the Las Vegas Wranglers don another fabulous promotional jersey. This time, the Wranglers will honour the Girl Scouts of the USA by donning this uniform for their game against the Bakersfield Condors. An interesting choice of uniform. I wonder if there will be girl scouts selling cookies in the concourse instead of 50/50 tickets?
  • Nice to see Brampton Battalion forward and former Moose player Cody Hodgson on the ice tonight in the OHL. The Brampton captain, wearing #19 again tonight, had been out all season thus far with a back injury, but returned tonight against the Erie Otters. Hodgson recorded two assists, and looked very comfortable out there. Great news for a kid who missed a lot of hockey this season.
  • Marco Scandella, another of Canada's World Junior team members, will join Patrice Cormier on the sidelines as he awaits a decision after he threw a hit that made contact with the head of a player from the Rimouski Oceanic. The Val-d'Or Foreurs defenceman will most likely get some time off, but it will be interesting to see how the QMJHL rules on this hit after Cormier's punishment.
  • Mike Komisarek's season is over after he was told he'll need season-ending shoulder surgery. Komisarek will also miss the 2010 Winter Olympics, ending what might have been the biggest year of his career thus far. As much as I dislike the Leafs, I have no ill will towards any injured player, and I hope Komisarek makes a full and speedy recovery.
  • The 1-0 victory by the Edmonton Oilers over the Philadelphia Flyers last night had some history to it. The longest game in AHL history was decided by the same player against the same goaltender. Philadelphia's Michael Leighton was the goaltender for the Albany River Rats while Edmonton's Ryan Potulny was the shooter for the Philadelphia Phantoms. Here's the video of how that one ended. After three full periods and four overtime periods, Potulny rips the winner past Leighton in the fifth overtime period. Potulny solved Leighton again last night to give the Oilers the win.
I'm sure there will be all sorts of breakdowns, examinations, and chatter about the trade in the next couple of days, but I'm not very excited about this. Kovalchuk's game is the square peg trying to be pounded into New Jersey's defensive scheme's round hole. While they may be fine during the regular season, it's the playoffs where Kovalchuk will show his mettle. Four playoff games in his career, and only two points to show for it?

That's hardly New Jersey playoff hockey.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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