Ilya And Foul Balls
I think I’ve got the facts straight about this Ilya Kovalchuk thing.
With twelve years and 77 million dollars remaining on Kovalchuk’s New Jersey Devils contract, he announced his retirement and said he was going home. Home to play for St. Petersburg SKA, for a reported $15 million dollars over four years. He’s not from St. Petersburg, he’s from north of Moscow, but he likes it in the place that Peter the Great had workers build on stilts in a marshy swamp.
Needless to say, plenty of workers died, or got bitten by way too mosquitoes if they didn’t.
People are mad at him on Twitter. Jeremy Roenick says he’s livid that the Russian would bail out on his team like that. Others say that too. As far as Lou Lamoriello goes , it’s sympathy for the Devil.
Sometimes teams go through hard times when they get ripped apart. People are sad. It becomes less yachting time and more rebuilding time. It’s heartbreaking for other billionaires to witness.
I agree what Kovalchuk did might might have been a little underhanded, but the fact remains, he wanted to move back to his homeland. He likes it there. Russia’s a place where, if you’re loaded, it can be excellent to be in. And of course any Russian player prefers Russian cooking to North American fare. It goes without saying.
I myself prefer Canadian food. Pizza, spaghetti, curried chicken, tacos.
If Kovalchuk doesn’t have any scruples, who are we to judge? It’s not like owners and GMs have never screwed players. And if I played in the KHL and yearned to return home to Canada, I might be unscrupulous and bail out too.
I shouldn’t even talk about this kind of thing. I don’t understand any of it. Turning your back on $77 million is quite a thing. And how do you think New Jerseyans feel? Some Russian wouldn’t live there even for 77 million bucks.
In other news -
A guy in the stands caught four balls at a Cleveland Indians game.
I came close getting one once. And my first wife and our friends Reg Fox and Pat can testify. We were at a game at Shea Stadium, sitting high behind home plate. I got up and went to get a hot dog or something, and while I was gone, a foul ball landed on my seat.