Thread: Confirmed with Link: Kovalchuk Deal Rejected
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07-20-2010, 09:32 PM
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That means the blockbuster deal must be reworked.

According to a person with knowledge of the contract who requested anonymity because he is not authorized to speak for the league on the matter, the Devils can attempt to reform and refile the contract. Alternately, the NHL Players' Association can file a grievance.

A player cannot play until an arbitrator rules on the contract, although that does not seem to be a concern at this point in the summer.

In an effort to keep Kovalchuk's average salary (and cap hit) low, the Devils signed him to the longest contract in NHL history. Although he will be paid $11.5 million at its height, the average is just $6 million.

General manager Lou Lamoriello spoke today on that subject and said he knows it is a practice that many will scrutinize.

Some have suggested it illustrates just what is wrong with the current collective bargaining agreement.

"I might agree," Lamoriello said today. "But there is nothing we have done wrong. This is within the rules. This is the CBA. There are precedents that have been set, but I would agree that we shouldn't have these.

"But I'm also saying that, because it's legal and this is something ownership felt like doing for the right reasons, then it was done."

The league feels otherwise and has determined the contract is not valid.

Lamoriello has not returned calls.


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