The Kings are certainly in a much better position to battle for the Cup than the Isles currently, and declining them makes it look like he's not as interested in going to a contender as he was rumored to be.
This line really got me thinking. Are the Kings really in a "MUCH better position"?
The Kings are probably about two years ahead of the Islanders in doing the same thing- rebuilding. What I want to know is, why is Kovalchuk going to the Kings lumped in with and considered to be a case of him going to "a contender"? I dont get it. The Kings are NOT already contenders and have NOT earned the title people keep putting on them. Might they be contenders soon? Sure, why not? They are a young and talented team who is getting better and better. They are certainly on their way. But they arent contenders yet as of right now. Lets look at the facts:
Islanders have made the playoffs more often than they have in recent years! I looked at the stats from this century. If anything, the Islanders/Kings comparison has either been a wash or the Isles have been better than the Kings, except for last season. That does NOT make one "a contender".
Yes, the Kings are a young and talented team who is getting better and better. But so are the Islanders. They are going to be a lot better a lot sooner than most people think- especially the people in the media who keep referring to a choice between the two teams as one between a contender and a non-contender. Could a player like Kovalchuk MAKE them a contender? Quite possible, yes. But that would not be him GOING to a contender, it would be him making a team into one. Big difference, as far as Im concerned. And Im sorry but there is no logical reason to think that he would not have just as positive of an effect on the New York Islanders.
If someone wanted to say that the Kings are in a somewhat better position than the Isles, just insofar as they have been going with youth and rebuilding a bit longer, alright- Id be OK with that... but Im getting tired of the 2y difference in their rebuilds being made into some gigantic chasm, because it simply isnt.
Fact is, the only actual contender that is known to be in this Kovalchuk thing is the Devils. The Flyers would be as well, except I cannot for the life of me fathom how they would possibly afford him.
OK- I feel better now having said that. Now back to our regularly scheduled waiting and wondering.