Monday, July 19, 2010

The story goes on

Congratulations, Ilya Kovalchuk. You've signed a new contract. It took you a very long time to decide to stay exactly where you were. You didn't need to hire me to produce your TV special (I could've pitched more ideas!) and you got all the delicious money a guy could want. You're super rich and you love New Jersey, making you the Russian Jon Bon Jovi. Congratulations.

Bon Jovi nesting dolls vs. Ilya Kovalchuk: debate in the comments section.

I'm totally mystified by this contract. Kovalchuk will belong to the Devils for 17 years. Yes, seventeen years. It's the longest contract I've seen in all my very few years of hockey fandom. It might be the longest contract ever, unless this Tom Cruise/Katie Holmes marriage outlives it. It seems like complete madness for anyone to lock down a hockey player for that long. Since Kovalchuk is 27 and not named Chris Chelios, I'm not entirely sure that he'll actually make it to the seventeenth season of his contract. So I'm guessing that this is like television actors signing contracts for 7 seasons despite the fact that their show might not make it that long. (And if it does and you're Steve Carell, then The Office may as well implode in order to avoid repeating the sins that Scrubs committed.)

No offense, Creed.

Maybe that's why the last few seasons of this contract would potentially pay him an entry-level salary. I guess no one thinks he can play at an Ilya Kovalchuk level for that long. 17 years is a ridiculously long time, especially in sports.

Seventeen years ago, some of the guys who hoisted the 2010 Stanley Cup were just learning to read. (And no, that wasn't a joke about Patrick Kane's reading and math skills.)
Seventeen years from now, my as-yet-unborn cousin will have finished high school.

Seventeen years ago, the Montreal Canadiens were the Stanley Cup champions.
Seventeen years from now, some of the players we expected to bring the Cup to Montreal this year might be retired.

It's just a lot for a newbie hockey fan to understand. But, as I usually say, let's see how this pans out. This might turn out to be a great move for New Jersey in the long run.
The very, very long run.

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