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2014 NHL Draft
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Alex Kovalev
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Alex Kovalev  #27

Florida Panthers  Right Wing
NUMBER: 27 BIRTHDATE: February 24, 1973  (AGE 41)
HEIGHT: 6' 2" BIRTHPLACE: Togliatti, Russia
WEIGHT: 222 DRAFTED: NYR / 1991 NHL Entry Draft
Shoots: Left ROUND: 1st   (15th overall)
<span class="txt18Strg">All-Star Profile </span><br /> <br /> <a href="#quick"><b>QUICK FACTS</b></a><br /> <a href="#he"><b>HE SAID IT</b></a><br /> <a href="#they"><b>THEY SAID IT</b></a><br /> <a href="#news"><b>IN THE NEWS</b></a><br /> <a href="#video"><b>VIDEO FEATURES</b></a><br /> <br /> <a name="quick"></a><b>QUICK FACTS</b><br /> Kovalev was one of the NHL's biggest comeback stories of 2007-08, leading the Canadiens in scoring with 84 points (35 goals, 49 assists) in 82 games &ndash; his highest single-season total since a 95-point campaign with Pittsburgh in 2000-01 and the Canadiens' top offensive performance in over a decade (Pierre Turgeon and Vincent Damphousse recorded 96 and 94 points, respectively, in 1995-96). Kovalev formed the Canadiens' top offensive trio with 25-year-old Tomas Plekanec and 23-year-old Andrei Kostitsyn, who ranked second and sixth, respectively, in team scoring. At the defensive end, Kovalev earned a spot on the Canadiens' top penalty-killing unit and led the team in plus-minus (+18). Linemates Kostitsyn and Plekanec ranked second and third, respectively (both +15). <br /> <br /> A first-round pick of the New York Rangers in 1991, with whom he made his League debut in 1992-93 and captured the Stanley Cup in 1994, Kovalev has tallied 876 points (368 goals, 508 assists) in 1,073 games (through Jan. 1) <br /> <br /> In the 2003 All-Star Game, Kovalev, representing the Pittsburgh Penguins, played on a line with Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Eight days after the game he was traded by the Penguins to the New York Rangers. He participated in the first-ever shootout (was stopped by Marty Turco) as the League experimented with the new format for breaking tie games that would become a staple of regular-season play in October, 2005. <br /> <br /> He made his All-Star debut in 2001 with the World All-Stars and holds the distinction of scoring the 23rd goal of the game, eclipsing the previous record of 22 goals in a game. North America All-Stars defeated World All-Stars 14-12. <br /> <br /> <a name="he"></a><b>HE SAID IT</b><br /> On his first All-Star experience: &quot;I wouldn't mind coming back here again, I was really excited. I took pictures of everybody, no matter who it was. They gave me this camera, and I didn't know what to do with it, so I decided to take pictures of everything. For the skills competition, I was trying to put it in my pants so if I had a breakaway, I could set off the flash in the goalie's eyes and maybe score.&quot; <br /> <br /> On his start to the 2008-09 season: &quot;I'm trying not to do too much. I came out this year and felt pretty good, so I felt like I could do a little bit extra. But it was time to go back and not try to do everything by yourself, and use your partners a little bit.&quot; <br /> <br /> <a name="they"></a><b>THEY SAID IT</b><br /> Former NHL great Mario Lemieux commenting on Kovalev at 2003 All-Star Game: &quot;He's the best stick handler I've ever seen. Quickness. Hands. A much better stick handler than me. He's got the talent to be the best player in the world.&quot; <br /> <br /> Montreal coach Guy Carbonneau on Kovalev's scoring drought: &quot;Since the start of the year he's the guy who has created the most scoring chances, but he seemed to be hitting a crossbar, or hitting a defenseman or something like that. We knew that once he got a goal he'd start to feel a little more relaxed, and that's what happened.&quot; <br /> <br /> <a name="news"></a><b>IN THE NEWS</b><br /> <br /> <a name="video"></a><b>VIDEO FEATURES</b><br /> <a href="http://canadiens.nhl.tv/team/console.jsp?&amp;id=17859">HabsTV: Kovalev 2007-08 Season in Review</a><br /> <br /> <span class="txt14Strg">Career All-Star Game Statistics </span> <div id="asstatsbox" style="border: 1px solid rgb(161, 161, 161); margin: 4px 0px; padding: 0px; float: left; width: 660px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"> <table width="100%" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="2" border="0" class="asstat"> <tbody> <tr class="headrw"> <td>SEASON</td> <td>TEAM</td> <td>Score</td> <td>R</td> <td align="center">GP</td> <td align="center">G</td> <td align="center">A</td> <td align="center">PTS</td> <td align="center">+/-</td> <td align="center">PIM</td> <td align="center">PP</td> <td align="center">SH</td> <td align="center">GW</td> <td align="center">SOG</td> </tr> <tr> <td>2000-01</td> <td>World</td> <td>12-14</td> <td>L</td> <td align="center">1</td> <td align="center">1</td> <td align="center">1</td> <td align="center">2</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center" class="right">3</td> </tr> <tr> <td>2002-03</td> <td>East</td> <td>5-6</td> <td>L</td> <td align="center">1</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">-1</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center" class="right">3</td> </tr> <tr class="totrw"> <td colspan="4">All-Star Totals</td> <td align="center">2</td> <td align="center">1</td> <td align="center">1</td> <td align="center">2</td> <td align="center">-1</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center">0</td> <td align="center" class="right">6</td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <script type="text/javascript">jQuery(function(){ jQuery('#asstatsbox').corner('6px'); });</script>
Quote of the Day

It's really exciting. I'm pretty sure that when I play my first game I'm going to be emotional. To be back on the ice playing a game, being in game situations, with all the routines and rituals I do before games and during the game, I feel like I'm going to be emotional. I'm going to be really happy.

— Montreal Canadiens forward Tim Bozon on playing for the first time since his life-threaning illness