Blog Entry

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

Posted on: February 3, 2010 3:48 pm
Edited on: February 3, 2010 6:35 pm
Ilya Kovalchuk's days in Atlanta are done.

Thrashers GM Don Waddell met with Kovalchuk Wednesday and informed him to expect a trade within the next few hours or days, TSN reports.

"It certainly appears to be the direction the club is moving in," Kovalchuk's agent, Jay Grossman told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "Ilya's disappointed. But we appreciate the fact they've been honest about what their plans are."

TSN's Bob McKenzie says about six teams are in the mix for Kovalchuk and that a deal may take a couple days to sort itself out.

Waddell has been busy scouting players in recent days, the Canadian Press and Journal-Constitution report.

The Canadian Press said Waddell scouted the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday during their trip to New Jersey, and took in an New York Islanders-Philadelphia Flyers game last week in Philadelphia. The Journal-Constitution confirms the latter.

The Kings are frequently linked to Kovalchuk talks due to their wealth of cap space and young prospects. The Islanders are in a similar situation, but GM Garth Snow has said he does not want to break up his team's core

Sources within the Flyers organization told Comcast Sportsnet Philadelphia they are "all but out" of the bidding for Kovalchuk. A previous report in the Camden Courier Post suggested a deal would have to involve Jeff Carter, Claude Giroux and/or James vanRimesdyk.

According to Canadian network RDS, Waddell says the Boston Bruins and New York Rangers are among the teams after Kovalchuk.

Blogger and former Islanders VP of Communications Chris Botta says the Bruins have made a legitimage pitch to Atlanta. Sun Media's Bruce Garrioch also notes Boston GM Peter Chiarelli stepped up his efforts to land Kovalchuk. Boston Globe beat writer Kevin Paul Dupont, however, reports the Bruins are not considered one of the serious bidders.

The Chicago Blackhawks have also been mentioned as possible suitors for the five-time 40-goal scorer. Former Thrashers beat writer Craig Custance reports this is not the case. TSN's McKenzie says the Calgary Flames, also mentioned as an interested party, are out of the mix, too.

The teams that try to acquire Kovalchuk will have to do it somewhat blindly in regards to a contract extension. Waddell will not allow other teams to negotiate a new deal for the forward prior to any trade.

Another report in the Journal-Contitution, citing local sports radio host John Kincade, says Atlanta offered their captain a long-term deal that would have paid $10 million a season. The paper notes it would have been the largest contract ever offered to an unrestricted free agent.

Journal-Constitution sports columnist Jeff Schultz, also a former Thrashers beat writer, reports Kovalchuk wanted the maximum salary allowed under the collective bargaining agreement -- 20 percent of Atlanta's payroll or $11.3 million. The captain also sought a deal in the 10-to-12 year range. Atlanta's last offer was $101 million for 12 years, which breaks down to a little more than $8.4 million a season.

Since: Apr 21, 2009
Posted on: February 4, 2010 11:45 am

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

Waddell should be the one packing his bags.




drafted lehtonen

has had plenty of high picks many misses not many hits

Kovalchuk wants out. he doesnt want to play in ATL. he also wants Ovechkin money. i say he is worth 10 mill season MAX. and he turned that down.

send him to LA.

Since: Feb 21, 2008
Posted on: February 4, 2010 11:01 am

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

For the Bruins to pull this off,  the deal would have to include something like David Krejci, Dennis Wideman, the B's first round pick (not the one they got from Toronto) in 2010 and the first rounder in 2011.  That would give them cap relief and still 4 picks this year in the first two rounds.  Or they stand pat and build a team that will contend in 2011-2012.  Pick your poison!

Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: February 4, 2010 8:58 am

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

Oh totally I agree with ur thoughts BravesRus. I just don't think the Kings would sell on getting rid of Quick if they want 2 make the playoffs. Personaly I think he's been outstanding this year & he has responded nicely after getting Contract Ext. He's a proven workhorse & needs time 2 set his roots staying put. I just don't see Kovi going 2 the Bruins despite wealthy draft picks & really Bruins don't have much talent wrapped up in their club 2 send him packing there

Since: Jan 30, 2008
Posted on: February 4, 2010 7:14 am

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

CryBruins can't afford. Kovalchuk,but like i been saying they will finish out the season without any moves and keep there picks.if Cam neely has anything to do with.i would stand pat.Surprised

Since: Jan 25, 2010
Posted on: February 3, 2010 10:53 pm

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

Good to see Caps have bee taken out of the conversation.  Last week there was alot of talk they were after Kovalchuk.  He is very good but it would be insane to break up the chemistry no in place.  I suspected it was Semin under consideration.  He only has a 1 yr exprension but he is so talented I wouold hate to see him go.

I fell Boston will be the winner.  They are in dire straits for a scorer and they are a big money team.  If they don't go for him they sure as heck should.

Since: Dec 2, 2009
Posted on: February 3, 2010 10:25 pm

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

I am a Minnesota born..Atlanta resident who grew up on Hockey..I was a North Star fan my whole life before they moved to Dallas..I now live in Atlanta and call the Thrashers my team..

Don Waddell has been a absolute terrible GM since he got here..He has made horrible trades..Hossa...Braydon Coburn for a retread 38 year old part time defenseman...and I could go on forever,

However this is one of the only times I agree with what he is doing..He has a huge problem here that he deals with now or in two years. Kovalchuk is a world class player playing on a bad team. He wants max money andyou dont have fans that come to your games. He has to realize that it really doesnt matter if Kovalchuck is there or not as they are not getting better and by giving him the max money there not going to get better.

Kovalchuk has said and not backed off saying that he wants max money...he also says He wants to play for a winner and to have players around him that are good players. Someone will give him that money but it doesnt make sense for it to be the Thrashers. He is a wonderful hockey player who makes some incredible plays..we wish him well!!

But here's hoping Waddell get's the 5 assets he is asking for...I hope the talk of the Kings..Jack Johnson, Wayne Simmons, Jonathin Quick and a 1st rnd pick or the Flyers..Jeff Carter, Claude Giroux and/or James van Riemsdyk is true..that sounds like a pretty good deals...dont count out the Bruins..they have those two high picks..I guess we will just wait...

Good luck Kovalchuk!!!your going to get paid soon enough!!!

Since: Aug 26, 2008
Posted on: February 3, 2010 10:21 pm

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

Let's hope Garth Snow is not talking through his hand.
The Islanders can't do this deal without giving up a bunch of their young guys. They have extra goalies, but not one a level that is worthy of mention with Ilya Kovalchuk. Cool Maybe we do a sign and trade, a 15 year contract for a 10 year contract.
The arena and ownership situations with the Islanders are most likely to tenuous for Kovalchuk and his agent. If Ilya thinks Altanta is purgatory, Kansas City wouldn't be far behind as far as hockey goes. Chicago or Philly might be a nice fit. Much more hockey oriented cities without the gright camera lights of a TOronto or NewYork. Los Angeles would be a good fit hockey wise because of their cap space. Their nucleus is maturing and there would not be very much media coverage foisting huge expectations on him. He's not Wayne Gretzky, but maybe another big anem in LA would drive ticket sales on the left coast.

Since: Sep 15, 2008
Posted on: February 3, 2010 9:33 pm

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

I say some combo involving Versteeg, Barker, Sopel, Kopecky, Ladd, Skille or Fraser for Kovalchuk, Chelios(AHL), and Tim Stapleton(AHL).  Obviously all the Hawks players mentioned wouldn't be involved, those are just the ones I wouldn't mind trading for Kovalchuk.  It would only be fitting if Chelios came back to the Hawks, and Tim Stapleton is not only a Chicago area product, but a free agent at the end of this season.  He has been great thru 2 years in the minors, as well as a stint with Toronto last season, and seems to be stuck in the AHL.  Past Kovalchuk, Atlanta won't give away any descent players because they don't have to, so you have to try and get as much as you can, to justify what your giving up for him. 

Bottom line, I can't stand Skille or Sopel, so I hope one way or another, they get delt out of Chicago.   If Hawks make a trade in which Kyle Beach is involved, I'm writing an angry email to the GM.  Kovalchuk is a great player that will cost any team young talent, but with nothing for sure after this season, I wouldn't want to give away too much of my team's future for just 1 player.  GO BLACKHAWKS ! ! !

Since: Feb 3, 2010
Posted on: February 3, 2010 7:35 pm

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

As much as I would like to see Kovalchuck don the "Orange and Black" I hope that the Flyers do not make a push to trade for him. He is going to get big time money as a free agent, and there is no way that they will be able to sign him. And, it'll come at the expense of Carter and possibly Giroux or JVR. It's not worth it.

Since: Mar 12, 2008
Posted on: February 3, 2010 7:19 pm

Waddell to Kovalchuk: Pack your bags

I would think that it would HAVE to be someone like the Kings or the Predators (a team with a lot of young NHL talent and cap space).  The Bruins could definitely use him, but with the what the Thrashers asked the Flyers for, I don't see the Bruins being able to get up that high.  You would have to assume that Krejci and/or Wheeler along with a high end prospect and a draft pick at the least.  Maybe someone like the Rangers could RENT Kovalchuk, but I am not sure that they will have what it takes either.  Going to be an exciting few "hours or days".

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