Ilya Kovalchuk's retirement might be the weirdest NHL occurrence ever...
I have mixed feelings on him doing this;
1) first off, i think other Russian players make be tempted to do the same for the $ and to be home,
2) interesting that he would have signed this long term deal with Lou and leave so early in the contract, not wanting to fulfill his agreement. Kind of d bag thing to do, at least he's been up front about this during the year. Devils fans will and should boo him for this!
3) with the lower cap this year Lou will benefit to lose this bad contract off the books.
4) it comes down to you have to want to play in the NHL and your team - if you are not happy then leave, and he did. I'll be interested to see if there is more to the story than what we know today.