Kukla's Korner

Blues On The Road To Recovery

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,

It’s hard to believe that, less than 18 months after stumbling to their worst record in 27 years and third-worst in franchise history, the St. Louis Blues have as much going for them as they do.
But they do, and Western Conference playoff bubble teams – I’m looking at you, Dallas, Minnesota and Nashville – should realize this particular object in their rearview mirror is definitely closer than it appears.

continued

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Stan Is Back

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stan Fischler at the Hockey Journal,

• And how big a stiff might Penner – a former University of Maine standout – be in Edmonton? The occasionally lazy forward is mentioned in the same vein as all-time “flopperoo” Alexander Daigle by Sportsnet.ca’s Alan Adams. Maybe Adams knows something that Kevin Lowe overlooked in the large lad.
• The expansion lineup is as follows: Kansas City, Las Vegas, Portland, Houston. …

much more from The Maven…

added 12:16pm, from the Maven at MSG Network comes this information…

Hockey high-tech is about to end an institution. The era of goal judges – as we knew them – is over. The NHL’s red light-flickers no longer will be seated behind the nets.
In most cases, teams will relocate them to press boxes where they’ll still be able to push the goal switches. But goal decisions ultimately will be made by the referees or, if necessary, the league’s War Room in Toronto.

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Versus & NHL Both Have Out Options, But…

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Multichannel News,

Versus can ice its National Hockey League deal after the upcoming season, a move that could allow ESPN to skate back into the pucks sport.
The Comcast-owned service has the right to end its NHL deal after the 2007-08 campaign, according to league deputy commissioner Bill Daly, who also said the hockey circuit can pull out of the deal based on whether Versus reaches certain distribution thresholds.
Daly, though, expects Versus to pick up the three-year option that would give the network TV and broadband rights through the 2010-11 season.

continued

Filed in: Hockey Broadcasting, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Questions About The Lightning Sale

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lightning Strikes,

How much did they pay?
Hard to say, though former owner Bill Davidson, who in the summer of 1999 bought the franchise, the arena lease and the surrounding land for around $98-million, always has said he would never take less than $200-million. More realistic is that he wanted to recoup the $76-million his company says it has lost on its Tampa operation since its purchase.
Will the team stay in Tampa?
That seems to be the case. Also, the group likely would not have taken the building and surrounding land if it was planning a move. But that question will be asked.
What about front office personnel?
MacLean apparently believes John Tortorella is a great coach, so don’t expect any changes there. MacLean also apparently has had enough of being a general manager from his time with the Blue Jackets.

more

added 11:35am, from the Tampa Bay Lightning,

“The Tampa Bay Lightning is one of the most exciting teams in the NHL and its future looks incredibly positive,” said MacLean upon making the announcement. “Having won the Stanley Cup in 2004 as part of a string of four consecutive postseason appearances with the same core of young, talented players, we see a very bright season in 2007-08 along with many more in succession. The fans in Tampa Bay are very knowledgeable and passionate about their team. We look forward to building upon the existing winning tradition while keeping the Lightning and its management team right where they belong, in Tampa.”

more

Filed in: Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Athletes From Your City

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Today in my NHL.com blog, I ask readers to list the Top 5 athletes associated with their city.
Any sport, active of retired, you are the judge. 
Make sure to mention your city in the comments too!

note: post will remain sticky for a day.

Filed in: Hockey Bloggers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Bolts Sold

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Tampa Bay Lightning,

The Tampa Bay Lightning will host a press conference today at 11:00 a.m. in the XO VIP Club on the arena level of the St. Pete Times Forum to announce the sale of the team, the leasehold rights to the St. Pete Times Forum and adjacent properties. Thomas S. Wilson, Chairman and Governor of the Lightning, will introduce a new ownership group, Absolute Hockey Enterprises, which includes Doug MacLean, Jeff Sherrin and Oren Koules. A purchase agreement has been signed by Absolute Hockey, but the ownership transfer is subject to approval by the National Hockey League’s Board of Governors.

thanks to a KK member for the pointer…

added 8:28am, A little more on Oren Koules…
from Helena Bighorns Hockey,

A native of Chicago, Illinois, Koules has an extensive hockey background, playing his minor hockey in the windy city before making the leap to the Western Hockey League, playing for the Spokane Chiefs, Great Falls Americans and Medicine Hat Tigers. From there, Koules entered professional hockey, attending the Chicago Blackhawks training camp and playing for their minor league affiliates in Hampton roads, VA and Flint, MI.
Upon his retirement from pro hockey, Koules entered the world of finance as a top floor trader on the Chicago Mercantile exchange. It was this experience that drew him into the film business. Koules currently owns Evolution Entertainment, which represents several successful of that businesses top actors. Evolution also produces feature films. Koules has produced several successful Hollywood films such as “Set It Off”, “Dumb & Dumberer” and the current hit, “SAW.” Koules also appears in the film along with Bighorn President, Mike Butters.

continued

Filed in: Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Happy Birthday Budd Lynch

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Great story from the Detroit News’ Neil Rubin.

Now he wears a bulky ring commemorating the 2002 championship, with his name and a replica of the Cup and a thimbleful of diamond chips. “The players got mad,” Lynch says, setting up another punch line at his own expense. With his fingers swollen from arthritis, “I got more gold than they did.”

Lynch has seen more Red Wings games than anyone on the planet, and, as he likes to point out, he’s never bought a ticket. As best he can remember, he’s never missed a day at the microphone.

More

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Ducks Trying To Move Bryzgalov

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the LA Times (reg. req.),

Burke also said that he was still looking to trade backup goalie Ilya Bryzgalov but added that he would be comfortable going into camp with three goalies. The Ducks also have Jonas Hiller, whom they signed out of the Swiss League in May.
“Bryz has been a first-class stand-up guy about this whole thing,” Burke said. “He has never asked for a trade.”

read on regarding Giguere’s hernia surgery…

Filed in: Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Crosby Turns 20

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,

Can superstar center Sidney Crosby still be Sid the Kid at age 20?
“Good question,” general manager Ray Shero said with a slight laugh yesterday.
“I don’t know. It’s a nice handle. And 20 years old is still pretty young.”
As of today, he is no longer a teenage phenom.
Born 8/7/87—begetting his uniform No. 87 and the average salary of $8.7 million on his five-year contract extension that kicks in next year—Crosby wakes up this morning to his 20th birthday.
“It does make me step back a little,” Crosby said. “Just to have the opportunity I’ve had, I feel fortunate.

more

Filed in: Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Players Head To Germany To Extend Career

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Edmonton Journal,

While young, inexperienced National Hockey Leaguers take advantage of exorbitant offers—Dustin Penner and Thomas Vanek easily come to mind—other veteran athletes are taking their talents overseas in an attempt to continue making an honest living.
Germany has become a solid market for former NHLers not quite ready to hang up their blades and no longer interested in battling for positions in the minor leagues or experiencing lengthy bus trips across North America.

read on

Filed in: European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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