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Kovalchuk: I don’t really care who I play against

Jun 1, 2012, 6:55 PM EDT

NEWARK, NJ - MAY 03: Ilya Kovalchuk #17 of the New Jersey Devils warms up prior to Game Three against the Philadelphia Flyers of the Eastern Conference Semifinals during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Prudential Center on May 3, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) Getty Images

Ilya Kovalchuk wasn’t much of a factor in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals and Kings defenseman Drew Doughty deserves some of the credit for that. As we previously reported, the Devils aren’t going to shy away from that matchup.

“In order to get (Kovalchuk) away (from Doughty and Scuderi), we’re going to have to get away from a four-line game, which has been our strength,” Devils coach Peter DeBoer said. “If they’re matching up against Kovalchuk, then they’re not matching up against (Zach) Parise or other guys.”

Kovalchuk seems to be comfortable with the Devils’ plan.

“I don’t really care who I play against, we just have to work as a line, actually a five-man unit because that’s when we’re successful,” Kovalchuk said. “In the third we started moving the puck and we started forechecking better. It doesn’t really matter who you’re playing against, you just have to be on top of your game and let them make decisions.

“I’ve played against some good Ds and figured out how to go through them by doing the things I’m supposed to do. That’s what I will try to do next game.”

Naturally, if the Devils strategy doesn’t work out in Game 2 on Saturday, DeBoer might change his tune. He has embraced significant changes in the past, particularly in the Eastern Conference finals following their shutout losses against New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist in Games 1 and 3.

  1. blomfeld - Jun 1, 2012 at 10:32 PM

    ““I don’t really care who I play against” …

    Trust me friends, if Kovalchuk doesn’t care about who he’s playing against, then he “sure as hell” better start caring soon ! Otherwise, this thing is going to turn into a complete rout for us LA Kings ! I’ve never cared for this Kovalchuk and his “bourgeois” attitude towards the game. He like so many others, are nothing more than “social parasites” who simply “take” from the equation (ie: they are not “net” contributors). As a Kings fan, I have to say that I’m not displeased to read this article. Nonetheless, Kovalchuk is not the glaring chink in the Devils armor, which was bared “naked” for all of us to see the other night. Man, I seriously can’t wait for tomorrow night now ! … these are “good times” friends ! :) … GO KINGS GO !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. vindicatus - Jun 2, 2012 at 1:00 AM

    “Bourgeois?” I don’t think that word means what you think it means.

  3. knowsfirsthand - Jun 2, 2012 at 7:50 AM

    He will care when Brown lays him out.

    The Kings were rusty on Wednesday night. They’ll be flying again tonight.

    • blomfeld - Jun 2, 2012 at 2:41 PM

      “here here” to that knowsfirsthand ! … our Kings were indeed a bit rusty the other night, though that’s hardly surprising after being off for eight days, eh ? … but like you, I also predict that our Kings go “nuts” tonight and light up the Devils net like a cheap “Made in China” Christmas tree ! … good times ! :)

      GO KINGS GO !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. vindicatus - Jun 2, 2012 at 9:07 AM

    “Whether the stone hits the pitcher, or the pitcher hits the stone, it’s going to be bad for the pitcher.” I think Brown is the one who had better watch out if he tries to take a run at Kovalchuk.

    • blomfeld - Jun 2, 2012 at 2:48 PM

      a good analogy friend … unfortunately for you however, your lazy, self-centered “bourgeois” hero Kovalchuk is the pitcher, while our values-driven “inspiring” brave hero Brown is the stone ! …

      Blomfeld’s prediction for tonight’s score: Kings 8 vs Lucifers 1 :)

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