Ilya Kovalchuk continues to hold out behind the red curtain. The Russian winger suited up for SKA St. Petersburg again Thursday, attempting to put a further scare into the Devils and the NHL. Neither party, at least publicly, appears concerned, but the general manager of Kovalchuk’s KHL club isn’t backing down.
In an interview with Sportbox.ru, SKA GM Alexei Kasatonov says he will “do everything possible” to keep Ilya Kovalchuk in the KHL. #NJDevils
— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) January 10, 2013
Kasatonov, ironically a former Devil, is taking the only public stance he can. We’re not buying the idea that Kovalchuk won’t honor his NHL contract when push becomes a strongly worded shove from Gary Bettman and the IIHF. The only interesting part of this whole case will be whether Kovy really tries to play in Sunday’s KHL ASG after the CBA has been ratified by his union and whether the NHL and/or the Devils decide to reprimand him.