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Ilya Kovalchuk inks 4-year deal with SKA St. Petersburg

Russian team SKA St. Petersburg confirmed Monday that it has signed former New Jersey Devils forward Ilya Kovalchuk to a four-year contract.

Russian superstar played for KHL team during NHL lockout

Ilya Kovalchuk returned Monday to SKA St. Petersburg, who he played for during the lockout. (Maxim Shemetov/Reuters)

Russian team SKA St. Petersburg says it has signed forward Ilya Kovalchuk to a four-year contract.

Last week, Kovalchuk walked away from $77 million US left on his 15-year contract with the New Jersey Devils.

SKA did not disclose the terms of the deal with Kovalchuk in its statement Monday.

SKA president Gennady Timchenko described the 30-year-old Kovalchuk as a "real leader."

Kovalchuk scored 417 goals and added 399 assists in 816 NHL games.

His best seasons were in 2005-06 and 2007-08 when he scored a career-high 52 goals.

He had three other 40-goal seasons.

Kovalchuk has represented Russia at three Winter Olympics, nine world championships, one world junior championship and the 2004 World Cup.

He played with SKA St. Petersburg during the recent lockout.