Kukla's Korner

Boughner Leaving Spitfires For Coaching Job With Columbus

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via tweets from Aaron Portzline,

Multiple NHL sources say Bob Boughner will leave the Windsor Spitfires to join #CBJ coaching staff.

CBJ will make official announcement of Boughner’s hiring on Monday.

added 9:57pm, from Aaron Portzline of Puck-rakers,

Bob Boughner, who has guided the Windsor Spitfires to the last two Memorial Cup trophies, will join the Blue Jackets as an assistant coach on Scott Arniel’s staff, The Dispatch has learned.

Blue Jackets general manager Scott Howson and Boughner did not return messages left on their cell phones. Spitfires GM Warren Rychel would not comment. But The Dispatch has learned that an announcement is expected by the Blue Jackets on Monday.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bob+boughner, windsor+spitfires

Ilitch Empire Could Expand

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bill Shea of Crain’s Detroit Business,

The attractiveness of owning the Detroit Pistons to Mike and Marian Ilitch may be equaled by a desire to create one of the largest regional entertainment monopolies in the country.

The Pistons are expected to be sold as a package with Auburn Hills-based Palace Sports & Entertainment Inc. — which would give the Ilitches the Palace of Auburn Hills, DTE Energy Music Theatre and the contract to manage Meadow Brook Music Festival for Oakland University.

That is, if the Ilitches are interested. Despite mounting evidence, they’re coy about it, and Palace Sports is mostly silent.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: detroit+pistons, marian+ilitch, mike+ilitch

Kings Out Of The Kovalchuk Race

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Helene Elliott tweet,

Kovalchuk says no to Kings. Lombardi: “We took our best shot to meet his needs and the team’s.”

added 6:09pm, via Helene Elliott of the Fabulous Forum,

Kings General Manager Dean Lombardi said Sunday afternoon that the high-scoring free agent decided against joining the Kings, who had targeted him as the productive winger they urgently need and a marquee player who might generate some buzz around town.

“We took our best shot to meet his needs and the team’s,” Lombardi said in an email.

He would not elaborate on where the Kings’ offer fell short or where Kovalchuk might be headed.

added 6:46pm, Just in case you believed those internet reports yesterday that the Avs were interested in Kovy…

from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,

And, the Avalanche will NOT be part of the mix in the hunt for Ilya Kovalchuk. Colorado just isn’t a player for the still-free star winger.  And who can blame them, really, with Kovalchuk’s purported salary desires.


added 9:46pm, from Elliotte Friedman tweet,

Source: Kings really want Kovalchuk badly, feel he’s exactly what they need…but cannot get him to drop below a contract request of $100 million. Kings feel they have made biggest offer they can without jeopardizing Drew Doughty and Jack Johnson extensions.

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

Ten Best Players Of The Last Decade

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

Several people were making top ten lists around January 1st to celebrate the bests and worsts of the last decade (2000-2009).  In hockey, I think a decade is better defined as the 2000/01 season until the 2009/10 season and now that it is concluded, I will make my top ten list.  Here are the ten best players of the last decade.

Martin Brodeur   He firmly set himself up in the debate for the best goaltender of all time in this decade by becoming the all time winner in shutouts and wins.  He won the Vezina trophy four times and the Stanley Cup once in this decade.  He was chosen as a goalie for Team Canada in all three Olympiads in this decade.  Brodeur clearly established himself as the top goalie in the last decade.  Even as he is 38 and clearly slowing down in the final year, he was a Vezina nominee.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

All Sergei Gonchar

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,

There was no shortage of interested teams, so why the Senators?

Well, it is a Canadian city. You know how Canada is with hockey; playing up there is something special. If I was going to leave, I wanted to go someplace where hockey really mattered. Also, we played against them a lot in the playoffs and I do believe they are a good team. They played us very tough in the playoffs. They are very close to winning the Cup, and I believe I can help them go that next step.

The Penguins weren’t willing to give you a third year, and a lot of people believe their reluctance was the sensible move.

Yes, I can say before you ask that it motivates me. My goal is not to play just until that third year. I want to play in the NHL until the (2014) Olympics. They are in Russia, and I would love to be there for my country. Three years was never going to be the end of my career.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sergei+gonchar

All Steve Yzerman

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

Last weekend Free Press sports writer Helene St. James caught up with Yzerman at the NHL entry draft in Los Angeles. Afterward both were on the same flight back to Detroit, which is how she discovered Yzerman, too, thinks “Blades of Glory” is hilarious. Here’s their chat.

Q: Speaking of Detroit, everybody loves a storybook ending. Holland and his management team are now secured through 2015-16, but if he doesn’t stay on beyond that, is there a scenario where you’d return to the Red Wings?

A: You never know, in five years, they may not want me (laughs). No, I come to Tampa Bay with the idea of building something really, really good. I can’t come into this thinking, ‘Eh, I’m biding my time till I go back to Detroit.’ I made a decision to leave because I didn’t feel that it was the right thing for anybody just to sit and wait and see what if?

Who knows what the future holds, but I come down to Tampa Bay with the idea that I’m going to do a good job here, this franchise is going to turn around and we’re going to be successful, and I’m going to enjoy the job. The Red Wings—I don’t even think that far ahead.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: steve+yzerman

Five Years After The Lockout

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mark Sutcliffe of the Ottawa Citizen,

When the NHL lockout ended five years ago next week, it looked like management was the overwhelming winner. Players took an immediate 24-per-cent pay cut and agreed to a salary cap tied to league revenues, something they vowed they would never do.

After giving up their entire salaries for a year, the players lost even more cash in the first season after the lockout. The total league payroll dropped by more than $300 million, or the same as cutting 300 player jobs. The Detroit Red Wings, the team with the highest pre-lockout payroll, cut their player salaries from $77.8 million to $39.6 million.

But five seasons later, the salary cap has grown from $39 million in 2005-06 to a projected $59 million for next season. In the four years since that giant pay cut for the players, total salaries are up more than 50 per cent.

From a cash perspective, the players are much better off. In the season that just ended, the players earned almost $220 million more than they did in the season before the lockout.


Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Western Conference Favorites

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tony Gallagher of the Vancouver Province,

After watching the Colorado Avalanche last season, making predictions about the NHL’s Northwest Division is guaranteed to make you look foolish.

So burn or delete this after reading.

But let’s assume the earth doesn’t move again this season and a team predicted by many to finish last in the conference does go nuts again. The Vancouver Canucks should then be in excellent shape to win the division and compete for first in the conference. If Daniel Sedin plays a whole season like Henrik did last year and Roberto Luongo assembles a better year, a push for the top in the west is a definite possibility.

Traditionally that top spot is conceded to the Detroit Red Wings, but their recent injury problems and the strength of the Hawks, Predators and the improvement of St. Louis in the Central Division made it very difficult last season. The Wings’ health should even out, but the difficulty of winning points in that division is unlikely to change. It could become more difficult if Jaroslav Halak improves the Blues’ goaltending. But Detroit would still be favourite to win the conference if Jimmy Howard plays as well as he did last season.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Don’t Trade Cogliano

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from David Staples of The Cult Of Hockey,

Every few months the same rumours come up about the Oilers wanting to or needing to trade Andrew Cogliano, and every months I write the same post, that the Oilers will regret trading Cogliano, who has added enough crust and jam to his game that he’s close to being a full loaf of a hockey player.

So here we go again . . . but I suspect, unfortunately, this this will be the last thing I write about Cogliano while he’s still an Oiler….

How do I see this player contributing to the Oilers becoming a winning team? As the Oilers’ very own Dan Cleary, a valuable third liner who can step up to one of the top two lines if necessary.

Cogliano improved to win 43 per cent of this faceoffs last season, but I still see him on the wing, as a third line checker and scorer, a player who works hard, crashes the net, hits, checks, scores 15-20 goals a year.

That’s what Cleary does. That’s what I believe Cogliano can do.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: andrew+cogliano

Will We See Any Offer Sheets?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,

Last summer, the closest a GM came to throwing down an offer sheet was when Brian Burke loomed over Phil Kessel, which led to the trade that ultimately landed Tyler Seguin in Boston — and perhaps another high-end youngster next June, given the 2011 first-rounder Toronto included in the deal.

The offer sheet is a predatory mechanism that a poaching club, armed with cash and picks, can use to inject an instant upgrade to its roster. The Maple Leafs have serviceable prospects rising through their system such as Tyler Bozak and Nazem Kadri, but none with Kessel’s quick-strike goal-scoring acumen.

But the offer sheet, by its nature, is also an inflationary tool.

read on plus more hockey talk including a look at Rod Brind’Amour’s retirement…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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