In the New Jersey Devils' 3-0 season opening loss to the Philadelphia Flyers, nobody's poor play stood out more then Ilya Kovalchuk.
Despite being on the ice for a team high 23 minutes and 30 seconds, Kovalchuk failed to record a point on three shots and managed a -3 rating. His line was at fault for all of the Flyers scoring in the opener, and the power play unit he leads (a team high 8 minutes of ice time on the power play) went 0-5.
When Kovalchuk signed a 15 year, $100 million contact in the offseason last year, many people believed it was a bad move. The Devils, who weren't known to be a financial powerhouse, have never spent that much money on a player and Kovalchuk really hadn't proven anything in New Jersey after being received in a trade from the Thrashers.
When the Devils had one of their worst starts in franchise history last year, Kovalchuk was at fault for a number of reasons. He was failing to emerge as the team's leading scorer that the Devils hoped for, and te...