Kukla's Korner

Have A Safe Holiday Weekend

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The USA will celebrate Independence Day on Monday, July 5th, so I imagine many of you are headed for a long weekend.  Enjoy and stay safe.

I will be around but doubt many hockey moves will be made during this time period.

Teams have most of July, August and into September to make some signings and trades, so why rush it?

Filed in: KK Website Business, | KK Hockey | Permalink

A Pause In The Action

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Craig Custance of The Sporting News,

Once again, the second day of July put the brakes on the NHL’s free-agent frenzy. The breakneck pace of Day 1 gave way to signings like Milan Jurcina and Chris Higgins.

That, plus the wait-and-see-who-will blink-first staredown between Ilya Kovalchuk and the Los Angeles Kings.

“Last year, starting with July 2, it really slowed down,” Minnesota Wild GM Chuck Fletcher said. “I could definitely foresee players waiting until late July or even mid-August before making a decision. If the money isn’t as high as maybe they wanted, players will be pickier as to where they go and shop themselves a little slower than maybe we’ve seen in the past.”

Teams are learning there’s a steep price to pay for getting stuck with a bad contract in the salary cap era. That means the stars will get paid but the next tier may have to wait for its money.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Kaberle Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Brian Burke mentioned earlier today that the Tomas Kaberle talks have been shutdown for the long USA Holiday weekend.

Plus, I heard Darren Dreger on 640am in Toronto earlier today and he said the whispers continue of Tampa being interested in Kaberle and the name Ryan Malone has been brought up.

Just something to think about over the weekend.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Avalanche Sign Pair

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

DENVER – The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that the team has agreed to terms with defenseman Kyle Quincey and forward Daniel Winnik each to a two-year contract.  Both players were restricted free agents. 

“We are pleased to have Kyle and Daniel under contract,” said Avalanche General Manager / Executive Vice President Greg Sherman.  “Kyle was a big part of our defense last season and we expect him to continue in that role.  As I stated earlier this week, we are counting on Daniel to be an important part of our team.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: daniel+winnik, kyle+quincey

All Saku Koivu

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Stephens of Ducks Blog,

On why he chose the Ducks on the first day of free agency and whether he considered other teams:

“The negotiations went on for a couple of days there. and then it took a bit longer than I guess we expected. And then we got closer to the free agency line there. We decided that we wanted to kind of see what the market is all about. We did get some offers. I don’t want to get into details about that….

On what he sees from the Ducks going forward:

“If we go back at what happened last year, obviously we all know that the reason that we didn’t make the playoffs was the first 20, 25 games and the way we played. We had a lot of new faces and for a lot of guys, it took longer for the adjustment period than we expected. But if you look at the second half and how well we played … obviously losing Scott [Niedermayer] is a huge hit


Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: saku+koivu

Willie Mitchell Recovering From Concussion

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

Ran into former Wild defenseman Willie Mitchell and his wife last night here in Minneapolis, and Mitchell, who completed a four-year deal with his hometown Vancouver Canucks, is recovering well from a concussion that cost him much of this past season. He was hit from behind by Evgeni Malkin. Mitchell definitely has plans to hook on with a team later this summer, but he’ll be patient to continue his recovery.

Heck, maybe the Wild comes after him later in the summer. I still maintain the Wild needs another NHL defenseman.

more plus other Wild notes…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: willie+mitchell

Team By Team Goalie Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Rosen of NHL.com,

A casual observer sees Evgeni Nabokov and Marty Turco headlining the goalie market and wonders how in the world the two big name guys are still unemployed? But this isn’t all that strange as winds of philosophical change appear to be sweeping through the NHL’s fraternity of general managers.

The salary cap system allows for only so many big contracts, and after watching a pair of bargain busters in Antti Niemi and Michael Leighton battle for the Stanley Cup last month it’s become crystal clear that teams can win a championship in this League without spending through the roof on a goalie.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Nothing Anticipated On Kovalchuk Today

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from a Tom Gulitti tweet,

Just got off the phone with Lamoriello. He does not anticipate anything happening today with Kovalchuk.

more tweets from Tom on this topic…

Do remember, things can change at the drop of a hat…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ilya+kovalchuk

Nashville Signs Lombardi

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Darren Pan tweet,

Lombardi signs for 3 yrs @ 3.5 M per season with Nashville. That’s a great signing. Strong character, low maintenance guy.

added 8:03pm,

Nashville, Tenn. (July 2, 2010) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed free-agent forward Matthew Lombardi to a three-year, $10.5 million contract. The Montreal, Quebec native will make $3.5 million in 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13.

        Lombardi, 28 (3/18/82), ranked second on the Phoenix Coyotes in both points and assists with career-highs in each category (19g-34a-53pts) in 2009-10, then paced the team in points during the 2010 playoffs (1g-5a-6pts, 7gp). The 5-11, 195-pound center has posted between 14 and 20 goals for the Coyotes and Calgary Flames in each of the past four seasons, averaging 45 points per campaign in the process. In 441 NHL contests since 2003, he has amassed 236 points (89g-147a). Lombardi has appeared in the Stanley Cup Playoffs in five of his six NHL seasons, most notably posting six points (1g-5a) in 13 games in helping Calgary to Game Seven of the 2004 Cup Finals.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: matthew+lombardi

So Far Today

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

Day 2 of the NHL’s free-agent shopping spree took a slow turn as teams and agents took a step back to reassess the situation.

As the prized gem of the free-agent class, Ilya Kovalchuk, continued to dance with New Jersey and Los Angeles, the rest of the group tried to chase the crumbs left behind.

“There’s nothing new,” Devils GM Lou Lamoriello told ESPN.com at 4:20 p.m. ET. Asked if the Devils were still in it for Kovalchuk, Lamoriello repeated there was nothing new and didn’t want to comment any further.

There was a sprinkling of signings, led by Pavel Kubina in Tampa and Christopher Higgins in Florida, but there were a lot of names still out there.

That included goalie Marty Turco.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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