The winds of change have finally caught up with the NJ Devils and they have caught the mother of all storms. After years of watching a franchise buck the trend and be successful at playing their game and their system and not succumbing to the ways of the NHL. Captain Lou has finally lost his mind and took the plunge into the abyss and followed the great example of Charles Wang and gave a 17 yr contract to the very talented and very playoff tested Ilya Kovulchuk. The absurdity of this contract will be felt for years in NJ and will hamper them roster wise and salary cap wise for think about it folks 17 yes thats 17 YEARS. An annual hit at 6 million a year doesn't seem that bad of a deal for a player of Kovulchuk's status, but when you look at their roster as a whole and who they have signed and not signed for the upcoming years, it will have an immediate impact and some of the most loyal players and fans will be crushed when the roster changes before opening night. They will need to rid themselves of at least 2 players right off the bat to get under the cap so say goodbye to maybe Ralston? no way 5 million for 2 years, he's staying. Arnott? nope he's staying. Zubrus? 3.5 million he's staying also. that leaves Travis Zajac and or Jamie Lanagenbrunner and that's only in 2010. Wait till 2011 and Zach Parise is given an offer sheet that Captain Lou won't be able to match. What does that leave. 16 miserable years left on Ilya's contract.