The Alex Kovalev comeback tour might be over. According to a report on TSN.ca, the Florida Panthers are preparing to make an announcement about Kovalev's future with the team.
The veteran has been a healthy scratch for Florida six times this season and he wasn't with the team as they traveled to take on the Carolina Hurricanes. All signs are pointing to Florida ending the Kovalev experiment.
Well this is sad news, isn't it? Unfortunately, it's also not surprising news. Kovalev has five points in 14 games – a line that isn't dreadful but one that isn't really that impressive either. However, Kovalev was brought in to add needed veteran experience to the Florida ranks, something he was being applauded for back in the middle of February.
When things are rolling for an NHL team, veteran experience is usually enough to keep a player like Kovalev in the mix. When a team is 6-9-5 and sitting near the basement of the Eastern Conference, valuable veteran experience isn't going to cut it and changes have to be made.
At age 40, it's unclear what Kovalev will do moving forward. If he still desires to play in the NHL, you have to imagine some team out there would be willing to roll the dice on him if the price is low enough. You never know, maybe the Islanders will pay him to sit out as they have with Tim Thomas and Rick DiPietro – stranger things have happened.
The Panthers are expected to make a formal announcement regarding Kovalev's situation soon.