Jul 11, 2013, 9:45 PM EST
Few – aside from New Jersey Devils GM Lou Lamoriello, perhaps – saw Ilya Kovalchuk‘s “retirement” decision coming. It’s not surprising that people reacted in dramatic ways, though.
Let’s take a look at what observers had to say about Kovalchuk leaving the Devils and NHL behind for the KHL.
It would be foolish not to start with former player and NBC analyst Jeremy Roenick, who fired up six critical Tweets up following the announcement. Here are (arguably) the two most memorable quips:
I am shocked that kovalchuk would do this to the devils and their fan base!!! Devils lose so much w this decision it’s scary!!! Selfish !!!!
— Jeremy Roenick (@Jeremy_Roenick) July 11, 2013
Hey Ilya hope u live comfortably in Russia w the money u made from the 23 million u stole from the devils Again I’m right in my analysis
— Jeremy Roenick (@Jeremy_Roenick) July 11, 2013
(There’s a strong chance “Again, I’m right in my analysis,” will have some legs as a Twitter meme.)
Note to all Professional Hockey Writers’ Association members: DO NOT VOTE FOR ILYA KOVALCHUK AT ANY POSITION ON THE 2013-14 ALL-STAR TEAM.
— Adam Proteau (@Proteautype) July 11, 2013
Kovalchuk infiltrates NJ. Costs team Parise, 1st-round pick, destroys cap. Best Russian subterfuge since the cook in Hunt For Red October.
— Dave Lozo (@DaveLozo) July 11, 2013
The National Post’s Bruce Arthur reminds us that playing in a foreign land isn’t necessarily easy, even if you’ve been in North America for years.
As Sergei Fedorov once told me, for Russian players, “it’s never been easy.” Easier now, of course. But still not home.
— Bruce Arthur (@bruce_arthur) July 11, 2013
This won’t provide Devils fans much/any solace, but the CBC’s Elliotte Friedman notes another silver lining for the franchise.
Because without this contract on the books, it will be easier to find a seller or a cash infusion for the team.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 11, 2013
Indeed, TSN’s Bob McKenzie ranks among the many who believe that both Kovalchuk and the Devils were mutually on board with the move. Or at least there were benefits for both sides.
6. When all is said and done, as big a short-term hole as Kovalchuk’s departure leaves in NJ, it’s a divorce of convenience for both sides.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 11, 2013
Metta World Peace – aka the NBA player formerly known as Ron Artest – provided one of the best lines on Thursday:
I’m retiring and playing hockey
— Metta World Peace (@MettaWorldPeace) July 12, 2013
Meanwhile, many Devils fans (and hockey fans in general) probably relate to In Lou We Trust’s simple headline: “What?”
At least, that’s likely the PG version of their reactions …
Nov 27, 2014, 1:45 AM EST
Callahan and Stamkos lead the way in win over Rangers.
Nov 27, 2014, 12:40 AM EST
Avs fall 3-2 to the Blackhawks.
Nov 26, 2014, 11:55 PM EST
Returned after missing four games due to injury.
Nov 26, 2014, 11:05 PM EST
The Pittsburgh captain reaches point No. 800 in the win.
Nov 26, 2014, 10:20 PM EST
Scores his seventh of the season.
Nov 26, 2014, 9:45 PM EST
Also touches on Martin St. Louis’ return to Tampa Bay.
Nov 26, 2014, 9:08 PM EST
Appeared to hurt his left shoulder. Team calling it an upper body injury.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:42 PM EST
The Winnipeg forward was tossed from the game.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:35 PM EST
Has the game’s opening goal tonight.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:20 PM EST
Gets a double-minor on the play.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:10 PM EST
Spent 13 seasons in Tampa Bay.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:05 PM EST
Opened the scoring for Tampa Bay.
Nov 26, 2014, 7:45 PM EST
Expected to join the Blues for practice on Friday.
Nov 26, 2014, 7:00 PM EST
Replaced by Andre Benoit.
Nov 26, 2014, 6:30 PM EST
Was hurt during Tuesday’s practice.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:31 PM EST
Two teams meet for the second time this season.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:12 PM EST
After an injury to Brian Elliott.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:00 PM EST
Yappy Lappy was at it again.
Nov 26, 2014, 4:06 PM EST
“Anybody can GM, anybody can be a president… whether you’re going to be good at it or not, who knows.”
Nov 26, 2014, 3:54 PM EST
San Jose coach is feeling the heat.
- Roy: ‘They got away with things that we could not’ 2
- Video: Panthers’ Luongo leaves game due to injury (Updated) 0
- Video: Jets’ Lowry hits Sabres’ Kaleta from behind 5
- Video: Lightning pay tribute to St. Louis 5
- He’s baaaaack: Brodeur joins Blues on tryout basis 19
- Chelios calls ex-teammate Shanahan an inexperienced ‘politician’ 16
- Sharks players go to bat for McLellan: ‘Why would you get rid of him?’ 1
- Garbutt to have hearing for kneeing Hall 3
- The day before Thanksgiving, six new playoff teams 16
- What they’re saying about St. Louis’ return to Tampa Bay 24
- Video: Milan Lucic calls Dalton Prout one-punch ‘gutless’ (99)
- Prout drops Lucic: ‘As far as I was concerned we were engaged in a fight’ (88)
- The Leafs didn’t salute their fans last night, so that’s a thing now (79)
- Jack Johnson filed for bankruptcy, parents allegedly took advantage of him (58)
- Bruins’ Lucic expected to play against Habs after getting one-punched (Updated) (47)