Since this is an interesting topic, and it’s already dominating every post anyway, here’s what I know about the Ilya Kovalchuk situation. I’ve been holding off until I could actually produce something halfway helpful.

— Atlanta is, without question, now exploring options to trade Kovalchuk.

— Atlanta is talking to the Kings, but certainly not exclusively and not “around the clock.” The Kings certainly have high interest.

— So far, there has been one offer made by the Kings, and one offer/request made by the Thrashers of the Kings. No, I can’t disclose the players involved. Yes, I know that will anger some of you. No, I’m still not going to disclose them. That information was provided in confidence by only one source.

— At least so far, the Thrashers are holding firm that no teams will be allowed to negotiate an extension with Kovalchuk, making him a rental player. The Kings would look at Kovalchuk as a rental, but wouldn’t be willing to give up as much.

— The issue, for the Kings and other teams, is going to be the willingness to give up players currently on the NHL roster. Atlanta isn’t necessarily looking for a prospects-and-picks rebuild, a la Dean Lombardi. They have franchise viability issues, and they need to keep their NHL team looking reasonably strong.

— Teams that are closer to being Stanley Cup contenders — and within that, particularly teams that are staring down salary-cap issues — would be far more likely than the Kings to give up current NHL players for a Kovalchuk rental.

— The KHL is a looming, real possibility for Kovalchuk next season, which makes every GM nervous.

— There’s a “trade freeze” in place during the Olympic break, but GMs can still talk to each other. The freeze will be lifted after the Olympics, and the trade deadline is March 3.

That’s about all I can tell you at this point. I’ll stay on it as best as possible. I would urge you to follow legit reporters such as Pierre LeBrun of ESPN.com, Elliotte Friedman and the Hockey Night in Canada crew, the TSN guys, Hockey News, etc., and to stay away from the fiction writing. So feel free to use this thread to talk about Kovalchuk to your heart’s desire. Practice is at 1 p.m. Eastern time today…

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Alec martinez

#27 | 6′ 1″ | 210 lb | Age: 29

Born: July 26, 1987
Birthplace: Rochester Hills, MI, USA
Position: D
Handedness: Left

Bio

Bio: Martinez was drafted by the LA Kings in the 2007 Draft, while playing for Miami University. He has since become a two-time Stanley Cup champion and the 17th man in Stanley Cup playoff history to score the Cup-winning goal in overtime.

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Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left

Bio

As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

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Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right

Bio

Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

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Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

Born: April 24, 1992
Birthplace: Scarborough, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right

Bio

Toffoli is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward, drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2010 Draft. Toffoli scored his first career NHL goal in his second game in a 4–0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes in 2013. He was also named the 2012–13 AHL All-Rookie Team.
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Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right

Bio

Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

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Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left

Bio

Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.

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