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Either way, Kovalchuk swallows pride

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07:38 AM ET 07.15 | At least one reasonable theory posits that Ilya Kovalchuk would have signed by now if there were any robust bidding for his services to stay in the NHL. Were Kovalchuk to jump to the KHL in 2010 when all 30 teams have the right to bid on him, he would essentially be admitting that no market existed for his services in the NHL at the price that he believes he deserves. In a way, it would be admitting defeat. Kovalchuk is nothing if not proud and he would not make that move without a great deal of crow-eating.

Foxsportssouth.com

Ilya Kovalchuk, Getty Images Ilya Kovalchuk, Getty Images
July 15, 2010  10:01 AM ET

Either way, Kovalchuk swallows pride

It's been my experience that the ones that swallow usually go first.

July 15, 2010  10:31 AM ET

What, no market for a one dimensional, me first lazy sniper? Who'd a thunk it.

July 15, 2010  10:39 AM ET

"Kovalchuk is nothing if not proud and he would not make that move without a great deal of crow-eating."

I have a great sauce recipe for Kovalchuk, guaranteed to make his crow stew a little more palatable.

That's what happens when your only motivation to stay in the NHL is greed.

July 15, 2010  11:46 AM ET

He must think he is better than Gretzky ever was... Gretz never made $10 million a year did he? He never got a $100 million dollar contract ever. Does Kovalchuk fit in the hockey godhead? Top three: Gretzky-G. Howe-Believeau. I would pay $10 million/year for these guys. Kovalchuk? Not even close! Wants some pepper with your pride Kovy?!!!

July 15, 2010  11:55 AM ET

Poor fellah :( I bet the fans way down south feel real bad for him. Karma can kick Kovie !

July 15, 2010  12:00 PM ET

You can't blame a guy for trying to get as much as he can but if it's not there **** up and make your move. I'd love to have him back with the Devils. I think you give him a whole season with the team and they'll be dangerous. Certainly wouldn't get embarrassed by the Flyers again. I don't think he's lazy either, pushed too hard a bit in the playoffs but he was definitely giving effort.

July 15, 2010  12:38 PM ET

I agree with you JWP. Can't blame a guy for trying, but its time for him to sit down and pick a team, even if it is for substantially less money than he wanted.

July 15, 2010  12:45 PM ET

I just don't understand why this guy thinks he deserves more money than Crosby and Ovechkin? Ever broken 100 points? Nope! He's 0/8. Crosby and Ovechkin? Crosby 4 times in 5 years, and the one he didn't he played 53 games and was on pace, Ovechkin 4 times in 5 years and the one he missed it by 8 points. Playoff game wins? 1 win in 9 games. Crosby 38 wins in 49 games. Ovechkin 13 out of 28 (not great but better than 1 in 9). MVP awards? Kovalchuk 0, Crosby 1, Ovechkin 2.

So when you when you take into consideration the Crosby is making 8.7 million per year, and Ovechkin is making 9.5 million per year, why does Kovalchuk deserve 10 million a year?

You're a good forward, but you're not the best. Take 8 million a year and shut up, cause quite frankly I think that's still over-paying you.

July 15, 2010  12:52 PM ET
QUOTE(#2):

What, no market for a one dimensional, me first lazy sniper? Who'd a thunk it.

Welcome to the NHL threads RichardStiffens. Do you mind if we call you Dick?

July 15, 2010  12:56 PM ET
QUOTE(#4):

He must think he is better than Gretzky ever was... Gretz never made $10 million a year did he? He never got a $100 million dollar contract ever. Does Kovalchuk fit in the hockey godhead? Top three: Gretzky-G. Howe-Believeau. I would pay $10 million/year for these guys. Kovalchuk? Not even close! Wants some pepper with your pride Kovy?!!!

Wow, I don't know how to start. Did Gretzky play in 2010 like Kovie is. I can't believe Babe Ruth didn't get paid as much as Adam Dunn. I can't believe Jim Brown got paid less than....every running back in the NFL right now..

July 15, 2010  01:11 PM ET
QUOTE(#9):

Welcome to the NHL threads RichardStiffens. Do you mind if we call you Dick?

Ding Ding Ding the rest of the day is full of giggles now !!!! That dry sarcastic whip of yours is in fab form today Canuck.

July 15, 2010  01:25 PM ET
QUOTE(#6):

You can't blame a guy for trying to get as much as he can but if it's not there **** up and make your move. I'd love to have him back with the Devils. I think you give him a whole season with the team and they'll be dangerous. Certainly wouldn't get embarrassed by the Flyers again. I don't think he's lazy either, pushed too hard a bit in the playoffs but he was definitely giving effort.

While I agree, what rush is he in to sign at this point. Might as well wait to see if teams make trades, open up cap, etc...The guy has kept quiet and everyone is yelling at him for being selfish or thinking he is asking to much. Though only people talking were his former GM and the GM who is trying to sign him (Lombardi) saying he's out, no he's in, no he's out...Sit back see if one team suckers up and pays him what he thinks he deserves (which apparently no one else does).

July 15, 2010  01:37 PM ET
QUOTE(#11):

Ding Ding Ding the rest of the day is full of giggles now !!!! That dry sarcastic whip of yours is in fab form today Canuck.

The man knows no boundaries.

July 15, 2010  01:40 PM ET
QUOTE(#12):

While I agree, what rush is he in to sign at this point. Might as well wait to see if teams make trades, open up cap, etc...The guy has kept quiet and everyone is yelling at him for being selfish or thinking he is asking to much. Though only people talking were his former GM and the GM who is trying to sign him (Lombardi) saying he's out, no he's in, no he's out...Sit back see if one team suckers up and pays him what he thinks he deserves (which apparently no one else does).

Absolutely. He gambled a few teams would outbid each other for his services and that didn't happen, at least not the way he had imagined it I suppose. Take the rest of the summer off and wait to see who comes knocking at the start of training camp.

Unfortunately, this would also means a summer of endless Kovalchuk threads.

July 15, 2010  02:09 PM ET

Well this was bound to happen as there is only so much salary space and teams have found out what happens when you put all your eggs in one basket (apparently a childhood fable GM's thought didn't pertain to them )as we watch the dismantling of the Hawks which isn't finished as they are still barely under the cap and need 1/2 a dozen bodies still .Hossa Campbell or Sharp still have to go .The fiscal realities may have finally set in >Sure a NYI can offer top buck as did Atlanta but if he signed with them he would have guaranteed their mediocrity till the end of his contract (or if by fluke {c'mon one of these guys is Garth Snow after all} they actually drafted a dynasty from all those early picks they would be getting ).

July 15, 2010  03:00 PM ET
QUOTE:

I disagree...training camps start in about two months so teams are trying get there rosters finalized and the longer he waits his opportunites will start to fade pretty. His wife apparantly has aspirations for a music career so look for a LA signing pretty quick.

What...Ukrainian Idol not good enough for her?

July 15, 2010  03:03 PM ET
QUOTE(#10):

Wow, I don't know how to start. Did Gretzky play in 2010 like Kovie is. I can't believe Babe Ruth didn't get paid as much as Adam Dunn. I can't believe Jim Brown got paid less than....every running back in the NFL right now..

What does 2010 have to do with it? Has hockey as a game progressed so far from what it was when Gretz, Howe and Believeau played? Still the same game is it not? When is enough money enough to live on? Are his abilities worth 10 million a season? Not in my books...though Gretz, Howe and Believeau would be. Have the economics of the world and the league changed that much? They have, but need be, to the degree they have. I agree with what someone else said... it's all about greed and what the market will bear. The market would bear $10 million/season for Gretzky, Howe, Beliveau, Yzerman, Orr, Lemieux, etc.... But not for Kovy and there is a reasom.

It is still about being on top - top team, top money, top player, manager, coach, organization and you get/want to be paid. Kovalchuk is not the top talent in the league. Is he top five? I would take Crosby, Ovechkin, Stamkos, Toews, Iginla, Malkin, Zetterburg, Sedin's, Lidstrom, Eric Staal, before Kovy. Why is he not getting what He thinks he deserves, because he is not what he thinks he is worth in other peoples evaluations.

July 15, 2010  03:23 PM ET

His best bet now would be to sign a 1 year deal at a low $ amount with a team like Washington/Detriot/Pittsburgh even NJ and then become a UFA next season ala Hossa with Detriot 2 years ago.

July 15, 2010  04:08 PM ET
QUOTE(#18):

What does 2010 have to do with it? Has hockey as a game progressed so far from what it was when Gretz, Howe and Believeau played? Still the same game is it not? When is enough money enough to live on? Are his abilities worth 10 million a season? Not in my books...though Gretz, Howe and Believeau would be. Have the economics of the world and the league changed that much? They have, but need be, to the degree they have. I agree with what someone else said... it's all about greed and what the market will bear. The market would bear $10 million/season for Gretzky, Howe, Beliveau, Yzerman, Orr, Lemieux, etc.... But not for Kovy and there is a reasom. It is still about being on top - top team, top money, top player, manager, coach, organization and you get/want to be paid. Kovalchuk is not the top talent in the league. Is he top five? I would take Crosby, Ovechkin, Stamkos, Toews, Iginla, Malkin, Zetterburg, Sedin's, Lidstrom, Eric Staal, before Kovy. Why is he not getting what He thinks he deserves, because he is not what he thinks he is worth in other peoples evaluations.

2010 has everything to do with it. It's simple economics. Ticket prices, revenue, tv deals, sponsorship, etc... etc... are all a lot higher. Therefore players get paid more money. From an economical standpoint yes the game has progressed that far. You better check your books agaain. I'm pretty sure in Believeau's day they didn't have a multi million dollar tv contract.
I just don't get how people vilify a guy for looking for the almighty dollar. That's why they fought for Free Agency. He isn't getting it, so who cares. He doesn't get paid til the season starts, so it's not costing him or any team any money.

 
July 15, 2010  04:08 PM ET
QUOTE(#19):

His best bet now would be to sign a 1 year deal at a low $ amount with a team like Washington/Detriot/Pittsburgh even NJ and then become a UFA next season ala Hossa with Detriot 2 years ago.

Nice idea. Signing with a contender and helping them to reach the Finals or win the Cup wouldn't hurt his value once the deal ends.

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