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Report: Sharks among Kovalchuk suitors

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Is a reunion with DeBoer in the cards?

San Jose Sharks v New Jersey Devils Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The San Jose Sharks are interested in acquiring Ilya Kovalchuk, according to the New York Post's Larry Brooks.

Much like the interest of teams other than San Jose, the Sharks' is driven by Kovalchuk's connections to the current coaching staff, according to Brooks:

[T]he Blues (with assistant general manager Martin Brodeur), Maple Leafs (with general manager Lou Lamoriello) and Sharks (with coach Pete DeBoer and assistant Johan Hedberg) are among more than a half-dozen clubs who have expressed interest in Kovalchuk.

The 34-year-old Kovalchuk played for DeBoer and alongside Hedberg in New Jersey from 2011-13. The Russian forward retired from the NHL in 2013 to return home and play for SKA St. Petersburg, three years into his 15-year, $100 million contract.

The Devils still hold Kovalchuk's rights, so the Sharks would need to acquire Kovalchuk via trade. San Jose would be able to sign Kovalchuk as an unrestricted free agent next summer if Kovalchuk returns to the KHL for one more season.