Now don't get me wrong. The Thrashers are a team rich in potential all around, and we can certainly win without him (didn't that happen recently?). We have glittering young talent in Kari Lehtonen, Tobias Enstrom, and Colin Stuart as well as fierce vet power and depth in Bobby Holik, Mark Recchi, Eric Perrin, and Moose.
I'm ecstatic that Kovy will be leading us against the Flyers tonight not merely because he's a phenomenal player and our Star Czar, but because he's passionately committed to the team. The man loves to score goals, obviously, and he enjoys the attention he gets (as he should; he puts on a great show), but he is above all else committed to the Atlanta Thrashers and doing whatever he can to bring us victories. Hossa is a wonderful player who seems--and it pains me to admit this--committed to the team about half the time. Kovy is a true team leader; true as in "a real live team player" and true in the Renaissance-Shakespearean sense of "loyal and devoted." He'll make a great captain next year. Long live Czar Ilya I!