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Which Ilya Kovalchuk franchise records might be broken?

lya Kovalchuk played eight seasons with Atlanta and still owns numerous career and single-season records.

Today following Jets practice Bryan Little was asked about playing with Ilya Kovalchuk, who was drafted first overall by the Atlanta Thrashers back in 2001.  Little is the only player still on the Jets roster who played in Atlanta with the Russian forward.  “I just remember sometimes being able to give him the puck and he would just kind of go end to end and shoot it through someone top corner and I would just be like that was the easiest assist of my life.  I had quite a few of those the first couple of years.  I knew what to do.  Just get Kovalchuk the puck.”.

Despite the passage of time Kovalchuk still has a number of records that continue today between the combined Atlanta/Winnipeg franchises including:

– goals (328)
– even-strength goals (210)
– points (615)
– pp goals (115)
– game winning goals (40)
– OT goals (8)
– hat tricks (11)
– shots (2178)

Individual season:
– goals (52) x 2
– power play goals (27)
– even-strength goals (34).

Of course the next question is which of these might be broken and by whom? The current Jets player who ranks second behind Kovalchuk in these categories is:

– goals (Little 200)
– even-strength goals (Little 139)
– points (Wheeler 497)
– pp goals (Little 54)
– game winning goals (Little/Wheeler 26)
– OT goals (Byfuglien 7)
– hat tricks (Laine 4)
– shots (Byfuglien 1859)

Individual season:
– goals (Laine 44)
– power play goals (Laine 20)
– even-strength goals (Laine 27).

It would appear that his career records will likely remain intact for at least one more season with the possible exception of OT goals which big #33 could tie/beat this year.  However his individual season records in all three of individual categories listed could potentially be eclipsed with many pundits predicting Patrik Laine surpassing the 50+ goal total this year.

This isn’t the first time Kovalchuk will play in Winnipeg as he was here with the Devils back in December of 2011 but with the franchise entering its eighth season more time has elapsed to allow a new wave of players the opportunity to best his numerous records.

Some will point to the Jets 1.0 as the records to go by but the NHL currently uses the Thrashers/Jets 2.0 as the standard for team and individual records.  Of course Teemu Selanne’s 76 goal, 132 point season back in 1992-93 or Dale Hawerchuk’s 929 career Jets points total will also always remain a standard for folks in this city.

As always stay tuned for the latest Winnipeg Jets news by keeping it locked to and on social media including Twitter | Facebook | Instagram. And you can follow me on twitter as well (@icdave).