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Ilya Kovalchuk: “Olympics more important than Stanley Cup”

Ilya Kovalchuk:

Ilya Kovalchuk: “Olympics more important than Stanley Cup” (Photo © Elsa/Getty Images)

Russian forward Ilya Kovalchuk gave an interview to Russian site sportbox.ru where he talked about the Olympics in Vancouver.

RussianHockeyFans.com offers you a translation.

Q. How often do you think about the Olympic Games in Vancouver?
Kovalchuk: “Pretty often, but right now I’m focused on playing for the Thrashers. We got into a functional slump and now have to get out of it as soon as possible.”

Do you agree that Russia has the best attack and Canada has the best defence? And what do you expect from the Russia-Canada game?
Kovalchuk: “Let’s wait until February when we face Canada, if we face them at all. I don’t think that Canada has the best defence, I’d rather say their defencmen are the most touted ones. The Swedes, Americans and Finns have very good defence too.”

Is Olympics gold the most important prize for you in hockey?
Kovalchuk: “Comparing the Olympics gold and the Stanley Cup is hard. Every player treats these victories individually. For me as a Russian, who understands how much the Olympic gold means to the country, the gold medal is more important than the Stanley Cup ring.”

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