Ilya Kovalchuk is Reportedly Being Released From the Los Angeles Kings a Day After They Deemed Him an Indefinite Healthy Scratch
Oh, no. What a shame. If only someone could have predicted such a fall from grace by a player whose game was heavily reliant on his skill, speed, and athleticism covering for his occasional lack of effort before he spend five years (including the remainder of his prime) aging up and beating down on overmatched opponents overseas. Maybe that would have saved the Los Angeles Kings from going full-AARP on an already elderly roster by weighing down someone whose sole motivation is money by dumping nearly 19 million unconditional dollars into their lap.
In all seriousness, nothing pains me more than to see Ilya Kovalchuk harshly humbled while the organization that "benefited" from him patiently waiting out the Devils' control over him as an asset watches the return on their investment turn red so fast that it might as well be wearing a Putin jersey. My heart truly aches for all those involved in placating to the tire-pumping of a point-producing pariah, as it is almost beyond comprehension that giving a no movement clause to a known mercenary proved so poetically unjust. Truly and deeply just tragic that the underlying numbers of a 36-year-old, puck-dominant defensive liability made him virtually unplayable in a slow, suppressive system during an era in which we actually pay close attention to those sorts of things.
While I do appreciate the humor in the Kings making it clear that he is still allowed to practice, as if that empty gesture didn't immediately make him homesick, I must offer thoughts and prayers to all grief-stricken parties in this time of mourning the slow, expensive death of a (35+) contract as shameful as the person who signed it is shameless.