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NHL extends Kovalchuk contract approval/rejection deadline to Friday, 5PM ET

Ilya Kovalchuk

New Jersey Devils star forward Ilya Kovalchuk, of Russia, listens to a reporters question during a news conference in Newark, N.J., Tuesday, July 20, 2010. Kovalchuk is staying with the Devils after agreeing to a staggering 17-year, $102 million deal with the team. (AP Photo/ Mel Evans)


Hey, you remember the second Ilya Kovalchuk-New Jersey Devils contract approval/rejection deadline thing scheduled for 5pm ET today? Yeah, so much for that.

Dan Rosen of reports that the NHL and NHL Players Association extended the deadline from today to Friday at 5pm ET, instead.

The Ilya Kovalchuk contract situation expected to reach a conclusion by 5 p.m. ET on Wednesday will instead continue until 5 p.m. ET Friday. The NHL and NHLPA mutually agreed to extend the deadline to accept or reject the latest contract Kovalchuk signed with the New Jersey Devils.

The contract, which reportedly calls for Kovalchuk to make $100 million over 15 years, was submitted to the NHL last Friday and the League originally had five days to review the contract before deciding if it was acceptable or not.

Is it wacky to think that the league is just messing with us at this point? I think I’ve officially run out of silly analogies and metaphors for this situation. Is the NHL the League Who Cried Contract? Perhaps my comparison between the Kovalchuk contract saga and professional wrestler The Undertaker is pretty apt?

While the league is pretty clever for keeping itself in the headlines in the still-somewhat-hockey-light month of September, you have to think that it has at least some egg on its face from the laughable process. After all, unrestricted free agency began on July 1 and while Kovalchuk took his dear time to decide where to go, it’s pretty ridiculous that he won’t have an official home two months later.

Obviously, we’ll keep you up to date as this beyond-tiresome story takes on more lives than a cat. Stay tuned, if you can stand it, at least.