There were stories suggesting Ilya Kovalchuk was playing hurt in the series against Florida, and he looked terrible in game 1 against the Flyers.
Both the team and the player were, as is the norm in the NHL, particularly the playoffs, mum on the nature of the injury.
To the untrained eye, Kovy didn't seem to be laboring terribly or favoring an injury. His mistakes at times seemed mental, with the NBC broadcast highlighting several key misfires and giveaways. Injuries can of course lead to those kinds of mistakes though.
The official word from the Devils is that Kovy is out with a lower-body injury.
Lamoriello confirms Kovalchuk out. Said he got hurt middle of last round. Groin is concensus
— Tim Panaccio (@tpanotchCSN) May 1, 2012