The Penguins made another move to help shore up their injury ravaged offense today by re-acquiring winger Alex Kovalev from the Ottawa Senators for a seventh round pick. Kovalev first was with the Pens in 1998 where he enjoyed a pretty successful run, but after he was traded to the Rangers in 2003 his career started a generally downward trend where for the most part he made more money than his production would likely warrant.
The fact that Kovalev was acquired for next to nothing show just how far he’s fallen off, but it’s also a result of the fact that the Pens are one of the few teams in contention that could actually fit him under their cap. The 38 year old may be no more than a 15-20 goal a year type player anymore, but for the injury ravaged Pens, he’s worth the risk… especially when that risk was only a 7th round pick.
People love to brand moves like this as “low risk/high reward.” It certainly is low risk, but I don’t know if even the biggest Pens homer is going to tell you it’s “high” reward. Still, Kovalev is more likely to help them now than whatever AHL forwards the has left to promote.