$6.66(million) the Number of the Kovy Beast

It appears the summer/fall of Ilya Kovalchuk has FINALLY reached an end with his latest contract set to be approved by the NHL. Since he became a free agent back on July 1st, Kovy has been courted by the Los Angeles Kings, lured repeatedly by the KHL, had a press conference, became a free agent again, and has had three contracts submitted on his behalf to the league with only the last one finally being good enough.

The league will sign off on a 15-year $100 million dollar contract with a $6,666,667 salary cap hit making the 27-year-old’s contract tie Rick DiPietro’s for longest in NHL history. Kovalchuk will be 42 when his contract expires with the team.

With his approved contract comes an amendment to the current collective bargaining agreement. Contracts such as Kovy’s, Roberto Loungo’s, Marian Hossa’s and Marc Savard’s will be grandfathered in.

Per Darren Dreger of TSN.ca (who was the first to break the approved deal)

These changes only apply to long-term contracts (contracts defined as five years or longer).

First: For long-term contracts extending beyond the age of 40, the contract’s average annual value for the years up to and including 40, are calculated by dividing total value in those years by the number of years up to and including 40. Then for the years covering ages 41 and beyond, the cap charge in each year is equal to the value of the contract in that year.

Secondly, for long-term contracts that include years in which the player is 36, 37, 38, 39 and 40; the amount used for purposes of calculating his average annual value is a minimum of $1 million in each of those years (even if his actual compensation is less during those seasons).

GM Lou Lamerioillo will now have to get under the $59.4 million salary cap before the start of the regular season with training camp just weeks away. While Kovalchuk has been in Russia training with Alexander Ovechkin as the two prepare to do a charity game with their respective all-star teams a picture provided by Puck Daddy’s Dmitry Chesnokov showed that Kovy possibly knew where he would land as his practice jersey is that of the Devils.

Behalf of Sergey Zikov and myself we are beyond glad to put this story that has taken up the majority of the off-season to bed.

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