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07-19-2011, 01:28 PM
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Montreal, PQ
Country: Canada
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Originally Posted by 417 View Post
A couple of questions...

- why is he worth it even if he doesn't work out? I could say the same about signing Steve Bernier to a 1M deal...hell, you can say the same about alot of players.

- also, why is he a 'grand slam home run' if it works out? How many players who are still left unsigned this late in July, coming off 2 putrid seasons, knee operations and would hypothetically sign 1 year 1M deals, become 'home runs'???

There is multiple evidence of proof...he doesn't mesh well in a structured system. This has been proven throughout his career, hell he even says so himself. Kovalev needs freedom to express his talent.

I can't speak for others...but I've watched him extensively in Ottawa and Pittsburgh and the reasons I wouldn't want him back have little to do with his perceived 'attitude' or 'lack of effort' and has everything to do with his deteriorating skills (don't get me wrong, he's still got a ton of individual skill).

Question #1: Sorry I wasn't very clear. Obviously if he sucks and retires after 10 games he isn't worth the 1 million. What I meant when I said that was it would be worth the risk at 1 million given our cap situation being friendly, Kovalev being old could retire or even go back to Russia. They wouldn't keep him if he wasn't performing so what I mean is it would be worth the risk even if it didn't pan out, just due to the upside being worth it. Now if it was 5 million or even 1 million multiple years... I'd agree with you. But given that signing him could potentially have no negative affect on the team even if he does end up in the press box or retires, I just don't see the issue with taking a gamble. Also before I wasn't necessarily trying to compare him to Recchi as a player but rather compare the age difference and show that older players are still able to perform, even if they have had a bad season or two along the way. I don't think we should just assume Kovalev is finished.

Question #2: If it works out that means he'd be a contributing 3rd line winger and mentor to some of our younger guys. In my eyes that is a grand slam because you're only paying the guy 1 million a season and he's a skilled vet who can step up and help out the top lines or PP in case of injury. How anyone could not see that as a grand slam is beyond me. I'm not saying it's the same as signing Crosby, I'm not even trying to say he'll have an 85pt season, but realistically speaking if Kovalev signs for 1 million and contributes on the 3rd line that's a home run in my books. Grand slam might have been overdoing it but ultimately in the context of hockey it's semantics. All I mean is if he fits the role for 1 million that's a great signing for both parties.

All the other stuff you said imo is purely opinion and I'm not going to argue for or against it. We both have our opinions. I saw Kovy in Pittsburgh/Ottawa too. He appeared to be completely unmotivated and said all along he wanted to play here. If he's the one calling up PG offering good dollars for a chance I just can't see how a camp invite (try out) isn't worth while let alone spending 1 mil of cap space we have no where to spend it.

Obviously given our cap room we could get Gorges, 4th Liner, even another depth player and still add Kovy at 1 million. I just don't see how adding a player for depth who could pan out even if it's not a high percentage chance isn't worth considering. If it does work out great we get a depth player who can help out a ton in terms of injuries. If it doesn't work out Kovalev gets to retire a hab like he should and it isn't like you'll be saying "**** now we can't sign another marginal 700k player because we signed Kovalev". We have plenty of room and the odds of needing another player if we signed Kovy, Gorges, wouldn't be that high. In fact even if we did we'd either have the room to sign that player when needed or have already signed them.

Anyways neither of us are going to change our opinions. I still think Kovalev can be a factor for a team, maybe even ours. You seem to think that for the most part he's deteriorated to the point of being AHL worthy. (not your words mind you)

All I can say is that everyone on that 2010-11 squad looked like their skills deteriorated. It was a very bad year for Ottawa in general. Bad coach, bad management decisions, bad injuries, everything went wrong. Just because in the sliver of games he was on a similarly injured but deeper Pittsburgh team he didn't light it up, it doesn't mean he couldn't somehow perform well for us and I'm certainly not going to use one season as a measuring stick for how a player will do in the future. Not when that player has bounced back from a bad season before, not when numerous players who have been thought to have been "finished" have done the same. I may be wrong like I said it's all just opinion, but if you're going to paint Kovalev with that brush do the same for Gonchar, Alfy, Spezza, Phillips, etc. Are they all going to be terrible for the rest of their careers? Why is it that Kovalev of all people will be just because he also had a terrible season on a terrible team?

I know you say you know what you saw, I know what I saw when Tomas Plekanec had a bad season too. He bounced back.

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