Brenda Branswell: Kovalev, the reluctant retiree

 

 
 
 
 
Guy Carbonneau (left) and Chris Chelios, co-captains of the Montreal Canadiens in the 1989-90 season share a laugh prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
 
 

Guy Carbonneau (left) and Chris Chelios, co-captains of the Montreal Canadiens in the 1989-90 season share a laugh prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.

Photograph by: John Kenney, The Gazette

Alex Kovalev’s retirement from the National Hockey League last week clearly didn’t unfold the way he would have scripted it.
 
 
 
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Guy Carbonneau (left) and Chris Chelios, co-captains of the Montreal Canadiens in the 1989-90 season share a laugh prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
 

Guy Carbonneau (left) and Chris Chelios, co-captains of the Montreal Canadiens in the 1989-90 season share a laugh prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.

Photograph by: John Kenney, The Gazette

 
Guy Carbonneau (left) and Chris Chelios, co-captains of the Montreal Canadiens in the 1989-90 season share a laugh prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former  Montreal Canadiens Sylvain Lefebvre musses the hair of former Edmonton Oilers star Glenn Anderson at an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former Montreal Canadiens players Alexei Kovalev (left) Chris Chelios and Steve Shutt celebrate a goal by Chelios during an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former Montreal Canadiens player Vincent Damphousse celebrates his first period goal in an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former  Montreal Canadiens defenceman Chris Chelios throws up his arms after her was 'traded' from the Canadiens alumni team for the start of the third period for Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin (who had been playing for the NHL stars alumni team) during an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former Los Angeles Kings great Marcel Dionne (right)  watches as Martin Lapointe (left) and Scott Mellanby embrace during an in-game promotion where couples, their images show on the scoreboard, are invited to kiss to the cheers of the crowd during an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars.
Former  Montreal Canadiens goalie Richard Sevigny stops Gary Leeman, formerly of the Leafs, Flames and Canadiens, at an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens. Defending is Jean-Jacques Daigneault.
A man has his tattooed back signed Eric Lindros (who wore #88 when he played) at an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Montreal Canadiens.
Former NHL star with the Boston Bruins and Colorado Avalanche, Raymond Bourque prepares to catch a puck he flipped to himself after an official face-off prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former Montreal Canadiens players Alexei Kovalev puts a move on former Detroit Red Wings player and current assistant coach of the Canadiens Gerard Gallant during an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former Montreal Canadiens player Normand Dupont and former Ottawa Senators goalie Patrick Lalime keep watch on a flying puck during an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former NHL starts Raymond Bourque and Eric Lindros exchange greetings prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former Montreal Canadiens defenceman Jean-Jacques Daigneault collapses in front the of the bunch of NHL alumni players, from the left: Martin Lapointe, Theoren Fleury, Gary Leeman, Eric Lindros and Peter Stastny during  an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens. Defending are Guy Carbonneau and Dave Morissette.
Former Calgary Flames player Theoren Fleury watches as Montreal Canadiens alumni goalie Richard Sevigny makes a save against him in the first period of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens. Defending are Guy Carbonneau and Dave Morissette.
MONTREAL, QUE: MARCH 24, 2013 -- Former Montreal Canadiens player Chris Nilan puts a hold on former Boston Bruins captain Raymond Bourque during an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens. (John Kenney/THE GAZETTE)
Former  Montreal Canadiens player Chris Nilan is stopped by Patrick Lalime, an Ottawa Senators alumni, at an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former Montreal Canadiens players Alexei Kovalev (left) and Gilbert Delorme think they might have the wrong helmets (they both were wearing #27) prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Former  Montreal Canadiens a goalie Richard Sevigny stops former Quebec Nordiques player Michel Goulet during an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin, a former NHL defence man, is greeted by teammates, including current Canadiens assistant coach Gerard Gallant (17) and former Canadiens player Mathieu Dandenault (to Gallant's right) prior to the start of an oldtimers hockey game at the Bell Centre in Montreal Sunday, March 24, 2013 between former NHL stars and former members of the Canadiens.
 
 
 
 
 
 
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