Alexei Kovalev, Enigmatic Russian, retires after 24 years
Summary of 3 articles · Updated Jul 3, 2014
He forced Kovalev to finish the period and though the seven-plus straight minutes of ice time was supposed to send the player a message, Kovalev drew two penalties and scored a goal. So when Kovalev tried to come off after a shift that lasted more than a minute, Keenan wouldn’t let him on the bench. Drafted 15th overall in 1991 – right after Pat Peake – Alex Kovalev became a prolific, if somewhat mercurial, NHL scorer. His last stint in North America was in 2012-13 with the Florida Panthers for 14 games, in which it became apparent that his skating wasn’t exactly up to modern NHL standards.