Blog Entry

Dean Lombardi PLEASE READ!

Posted on: July 21, 2010 3:35 pm
Dear Mr Lombardi,

I want to thank you for all you have done for Los Angeles Kings hockey and for hockey on the west coast in general, awesome job, you and your staff should be commended for putting together this young and exciting team.

The reason i'm writing is to make a comment on your courtship of Ilya Kovalchuk. I want to let you know a few reasons why i'm against this player coming to the Kings.

I believe that in a salary cap world, the way to win Stanley Cups is to 'invent' your own 10 million dollar player as opposed to paying 10 million dollars to a guy like this when you can draft your own 10 million dollar guys. If you are the NY  Yankees, you can pay anyone anything and there's really no need to draft well, but in hockey, with a salary cap, you can't be paying 10 million dollars per season to a guy who's just going to come in and not play defense. For 10 mil, you have ot be an all around player, i'm not sure IK is a defensive 'specialist'.

Also, the Eastern Conference is the B league while the West is the A league. These two leagues don't even compare. Look at some of the players who have gone from the east to the west and vice versa. Steve Montador was playing regular minutes for the Sabres (a top team in the east) and he wasn't good enough to even crack the top 6 D men for the Anaheim Ducks, who finished far back in the west this year. Montador leaves Anaheim as a guy who wasn't even good enough to hold a roster spot and becomes a star with the Sabres.

Kovalchuk went to the Devils and was no factor for a team who was embarrassed by the Flyers. The Flyers have shown that they are a horrible team and they're on the verge of being beaten handily in the series by the Bruins (who are just an average eastern team and wouldnt have been close to making the playoffs had they been in the west and playing western teams on a regular basis)

I'm all for bringing in an offensive star to the mix. But, i'd prefer to bring in a Western conference star instead of Kovalchuk, who cried and created a bunch of drama and refused to play for the Thrashers.

Kovalchuk is the guy the LA fans are going to boo when things go wrong. Do you want your fans boo-ing your 10 million dollar 'free agent' when he's underachieveing during the playoffs? This guy was the 'savior' for the Devils but didn't show too much heart trying to get the Devils to the next level.

Acquiring players like this, you better be right , or its going to cripple your franchise for years, holding onto this 'poster boy' for excessive waste, a guy who won't lay his body on the line to win a playoff game, a guy who might  be too busy trying to get a max contract. Why would this guy lay it all on the line if you guarantee him 50 million dollars or something absurd?

There are western conference Stars out there who are available at much less money and they're just as good, or better than Kovalchuk.

If you want to sell tickets and have an exciting regular season player who's going to light up 40 goals while making a bunch of fancy passes, than Kovy might be for you. If your goal is to win Stanley Cups, i'm not sure how Kovalchuk is going to help you do that. He didnt help Atlanta and he didn't help NJ, why are we thinking he's going to help the Kings?

Thanks for listening.

Since: Mar 5, 2010
Posted on: July 23, 2010 7:25 am

Dean Lombardi PLEASE READ!

Good post. I don't believe there is a GM anywhere in hockey who would blanketly discount the value/skills of NHL players simply because they play in the East. I believe the West is a little stronger overall but that doesn't mean the East is Junior hockey. I do understand the issues with Kovy's defensive effort (or lack thereof) and it does dampen his value as a goal scorer but 40 goal scorers are not exactly a commodity in the league. Seems to me he would have been a good fit for LA but I've read/seen more posts from LA fans worried about his signing than wanting his signing. Just curious, what is it that the Kings need to become serious contenders? Good young nucleus of players.......what/where do you guys need to beef up?

Since: Jul 22, 2010
Posted on: July 22, 2010 9:16 am

Dean Lombardi PLEASE READ!

I understand that there is an imbalance between the east and the west, but it seems really overstated here.  Your example of the sabres won 7 of 15 contests against the west.  That doesn't sound like "leagues" that "don't even compare".  5 of the last 10 cups were won by the east.  sounds kind of even to me.  Granted the east went something like 115-118-37 (quick tally, with error I'm sure) against the west this past season, but even that is a slight advantage.  Your overall point that kovalchuk is overvalued is supported by most including the NHL who shot down the devils deal.

Since: Jul 21, 2010
Posted on: July 21, 2010 4:29 pm

Dean Lombardi PLEASE READ!

Kovy was only with the Devils for a very short period of time, plus the Devils have been re-structured so they aren't the old Devils of the past.  On the other hand, you mean to tell me if the Kings actually signed him you wouldn't be excited??? Your kidding yourself if that was the case!  To add a 40+ goal scorer to your everyday lineup, would be every teams dream.  I'll give you that Kovy has yet to prove that he can be a great 2-way player, but only time will tell and to be honest, I'm willing to take that chance.   

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