Alex Kovalev still wants to play in the NHL: ‘If Jagr can do it, so can I”

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Alex Kovalev was arguably one of the most talented players in NHL history.

Was he consistent? Absolutely not, but the talent was always evident.

Kovalev, who turns 43 next month, last played in the NHL in 2012-13 when he was a member of the Florida Panthers. He notched two goals and five points in 14 contests.

In his last full season (2010-11), the Russian forward had 16 goals and 34 points with the Sens and Pens.

So, why is this important?

Simple. Kovalev is looking for another shot in the NHL.

“I’d pay a lot of money to come back and help a team,” Kovalev said, per the Journal de Montreal (quotes have been translated).

“I’m in exceptional shape. I do martial arts workouts five times a week. I’ve managed to bring my weight down to 225 pounds and I’ve built up a significant amount of muscle mass. I’d be able to play in an NHL game after a few days of practice.”

Kovalev last played pro hockey in 2013-14, when he suited up in the Swiss-B League. There, he managed to put up impressive point totals (22 goals, 52 points in 44 games).

That still doesn’t make a return to the NHL likely.

No team has reached out to Kovalev and he insists he isn’t the type of guy who’s gonna pick up the phone to ask an NHL team for an opportunity.

When asked if he would come back to help the slumping Canadiens (his former team), Kovalev answered: “I’d come back right away. If Jaromir Jagr can do it, so can I.”

Confident fellow.