Well, the biggest prize in the free agent pool was landed yesterday and I am as surprised as most people. Former Atlanta Thrasher Illya Kovalchuck resigned a monster deal with the New Jersey Devils. It was a 17 year deal worth 102 million dollars. That is a ridiculous deal! He is 27 now and this contract will pay him until he is 44 years old. The deal breaks down like this: Kovalchuk will earn $6 million each of the next two seasons, $11.5 million for the following five seasons, $10.5 million in the 2017-18 season, $8.5 million for the 2018-19 season, $6.5 million in 2019-20, $3.5 million in 2020-21, $750,000 the following season, and $550,000 for the final five years of the unprecedented deal.
It looked like Kovy was going to sign with the LA Kings but it seems they weren’t willing to go with as many years as the Devils were. I am astounded when I hear about 10 and 12 year deals, but 17 years! That is outrageous! As you can see by the way the contract is broken down, the Devils management doesn’t anticipate having him on the team for the last 5-6 years and that is why the salary is so low. But you never know, he could still be playing at a high level during those years and they could get a steal. I mean, look at Chris Chelios, he played last year and he is 48 years old.
I was really hoping Kovy would sign with a Western Conference team so the Thrashers wouldn’t have to play him very often, but it looks like we will have to face him at least 4 times each season. Oh well, I will look forward to beating the Devils even more now!