Ilya Kovalchuk (center) was stripped of SKA St. Petersburg's captaincy. (Alexander DemianchukTASS via Getty Images)
Ilya Kovalchuk sat out four of five games in SKA St. Petersburg's first-round playoff series and it was reported he wouldn't play again this post-season. However, SKA activated Kovalchuk ahead of the second round and he took the ice Monday raising even more questions about what his future holds.Ilya Kovalchuk’s situation in SKA has taken yet another turn, this time with St. Petersburg activating the veteran forward ahead of their second-round series against Dynamo Moscow. While that may not seem like much, you’ll recall that Kovalchuk, 32, found himself making headlines during SKA’s first-round series against Lokomotiv Yaroslavl after he was benched following the series’ opening game. During that contest, Kovalchuk was responsible for a neutral zone turnover that led to Lokomotiv’s game-tying goal in a contest Yaroslavl would win in overtime. Following the game, news came that Kovalchuk had been sent back to St. Petersburg to train by himself and would miss Game Two. He was also stripped of the team’s captaincy. What followed was four straight victories by SKA, all of which were without Kovalchuk. Before the first round was complete, there were a number of reports indicating that Kovalchuk’s playoffs were over. There was reason to wonder if Kovalchuk would ever play for SKA again. Or at least there was until Sunday evening. Reports came that Kovalchuk would be in the lineup for Game One of SKA’s second-round series, and that’s exactly what happened. Monday night in Moscow, Kovalchuk again took the ice for SKA.