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Penguins Acquire Ex-Ranger Kovalev as Injuries Mount

Alex Kovalev #27 of the Ottawa Senators
Alex Kovalev #27 of the Ottawa Senators. Photographer: Paul Bereswill/Getty

(Corrects Murray’s team to Ottawa in second paragraph.)

Feb. 24 (Bloomberg) -- The Pittsburgh Penguins acquired forward Alexei Kovalev, a member of the New York Rangers’ 1994 Stanley Cup championship team, as they look to overcome injuries.

Kovalev, who turned 38 today, was traded from the Ottawa Senators for a conditional seventh-round pick in this year’s National Hockey League draft, Ottawa General Manager Bryan Murray said in a release. Kovalev spent parts of nine seasons with the Rangers and played in Pittsburgh from 1998 to 2003.

A three-time All-Star, Kovalev has scored 426 goals and 591 assists in his 18-year NHL career. The Russian native was taken by the Rangers with the No. 15 pick in the 1991 draft.

The Penguins (36-20-6), who won the Stanley Cup in 2009, have the second-most points in the Eastern Conference with 10 players on injured reserve. Sidney Crosby, the league’s most valuable player in 2007, hasn’t played in two months because of the aftereffects of a concussion, and Evgeni Malkin, the MVP of the 2009 playoffs, is out for the season with torn knee ligaments. The team is also battling injuries to defenseman Brooks Orpik and forward Chris Kunitz.

The Senators are 20-31-9, in last place in the Eastern Conference, and could miss the playoffs for the second time in 14 years. Kovalev had 14 goals and 13 assists in 54 games with the Senators this year.

The NHL’s trade deadline is Feb. 28.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eben Novy-Williams in New York

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at

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