EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - FEBRUARY 25:  Alex Kovalev #27 of the New York Rangers skates with the puck during the NHL game against the New Jersey Devils at Continental Airlines Arena on Febuary 25, 2003 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Rangers and the Devils skated to a 3-3 tie. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images/NHLI)

Alex Kovalev would make a comeback if you asked him to

The success of Jaromir Jagr at age 43 has apparently gotten into the head of former NHL star Alex Kovalev. Kovalev, who played in parts of 21 seasons with five teams and last played in the league three years ago, has expressed a desire to return to the NHL.

And apparently, he’s serious … I think.

“I’d come back right away. If Jaromir Jagr can do it, so can I.”

In a Pro Hockey Talk report, Kovalev said he was in “exceptional” shape, the result of martial arts workouts five times a week, and said he “would only need a few days of training” to be able to play in an NHL game.

He said he would not reach out to teams asking for a shot to play, but if a team contacted Kovalev, he would “say yes right away.”

Well that makes two of us.

Kovalev was better than a point per game player in the Swiss-B league during the 2013-14 season. And that’s probably the best thing I could say about Kovalev’s chances of a comeback, especially if he’s hoping for teams to knock down his door offering him a shot to come back at age 43. I hope it happens if only because Kovalev has always been charmingly different. And if it does happen, then there remains the faint hope that we’ll see a repeat of the infamous five minute shift:

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