Ilya Kovalchuk

Kovalchuk, Yakupov earn KHL monthly honors


If it wasn’t for the lockout, Ilya Kovalchuk would probably be the New Jersey Devils’ top scorer and Nail Yakupov might already be making his case for the Calder Trophy. As it is, both are excelling in the KHL.

Kovalchuk was recently selected as the KHL’s player of the month and Yakupov was the top rookie for October, according to Chris Johnston.

Kovalchuk already has nine goals and 26 points in just 16 games with St. Petersburg. He’s easily leading the team in points, but St. Louis prospect and current teammate Vladimir Tarasenko has one more goal despite playing in three less games.

The fact that Kovalchuk decided to spend the lockout in Russia isn’t surprising, especially when you remember that he did the same thing in 2004-05, but Yakupov’s decision to play for Nizhnekamsk Neftekhimik over the Sarnia Sting in the OHL was perhaps a little unexpected.

Yakupov has been great in the KHL with 10 goals and 14 points in just 13 games. He’s expected to make the jump straight to the Edmonton Oilers when the lockout ends.

Avs unveil new third jerseys

Avs Jerseys
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The Avalanche will be throwing a bunch of different looks at us this season.

Having already released specialized “Mile High” jerseys for February’s Stadium Series game, the Avs unveiled new third sweaters on Friday — less than 24 hours after a bitter 5-4 home loss to Minnesota in their season opener.

(Guess Colorado wanted to send out some good vibes after blowing a 4-1 third-period lead.)

While undoubtedly exciting for the organization, the release of these new thirds isn’t taking anybody by surprise. Last month, several websites published leaked images of Colorado’s and Anaheim’s third jerseys, so the design has been in the public eye for several weeks.

The Avs will debut these new thirds on Oct. 24, in a Saturday night tilt against Columbus.

Related: Roy explains why he didn’t call time out

Report: Escrow set at 16 percent

Gary Bettman, Donald Fehr
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Hey, remember in June when the NHLPA voted to keep the five-percent growth factor in spite of increasing worries about escrow?

Well, here’s why that decision was a significant one, via TSN’s Frank Seravalli:

With early revenue projections in place, the NHL and NHLPA set the escrow withholding rate for players at 16 per cent for the first quarter of the season on Thursday.

That means every player will have 16 per cent of earnings deducted from their paycheque and put aside until after all of this season’s hockey-related revenue is counted to ensure a perfect 50-50 revenue split with owners.

Now, this doesn’t mean that the players will definitely lose 16 percent of their salaries. Typically, they receive refunds when all the accounting is done.

Still, 16 percent is a good-sized chunk to withhold. They won’t be thrilled about it.

Related: To understand escrow, consider Duncan Keith