Kukla's Korner

Money Is Always On The Minds Of General Managers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News,

Long gone are the days of the quick fix, in which general managers across the NHL would evaluate their rosters through 20 games and address needs with a quarter-pole swap meet. Back in the day, trades were mostly completed based on need and talent over the almighty buck.

Not anymore.

GMs these days are all about dollars and sense with a four-step thought process that generally goes in this order: annual salary, length of contract, years remaining before unrestricted free agency, hockey ability. If the first three don’t add up, the fourth doesn’t make a bit of difference.

“It isn’t about just hockey,” Sabres GM Darcy Regier said. “It’s about years on the contract, dollars in the contract and a lot of things that weren’t there before. You can say, ‘I love that player,’ but that’s not the first place you look. The first place is, ‘What’s his contract?’ ”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Sunday Morning Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

• Greedy owners have contributed to the early problems of the Maple Leafs. Not the Leafs owners—they are greedy enough on their own—but all NHL owners, who insist on too many pre-season games played which doesn’t leave enough time for practice. When you change almost half your roster, the way the Leafs have, you don’t get better playing meaningless games, you get better practising.

• Funny, the Maple Leafs’ so-called tampering of Canucks players is huge news in Vancouver and sidebar stuff in Toronto. If every general manager who leaked a name or two of players available, or in this case broadcast it, is thought to be tampering, the whole league would end up in jail ... If the NHL wants to deal with tampering, why not hammer some of the teams that sign players in the first minutes of free agency?

• The more I see of Steven Stamkos’ shot, the more I think the Canadian Olympic people have to seriously consider him for a place on the Olympic team in Vancouver.

more hockey notes…

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

Ice Edge Watching The Coyotes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Andrew Bagnato of the Arizona Republic,

Ice Edge chief operating office Daryl Jones attended the Phoenix Coyotes’ home opener Saturday night.

Someday, that might not be newsworthy - if Jones’ Ice Edge group buys the team.

Jones and Ice Edge investors have been discussing lease options with Glendale officials with an eye toward reviving their bid for the financially ailing Coyotes, whose sale has been tied up in a complicated bankruptcy proceeding.

“Our intention is to buy the team,” Jones told The Associated Press. “I think people are sort of not sure whether we’re serious, just because maybe they don’t know a whole lot about us. But the fact that we had a $10 million deposit, the fact that we’ve been in this for three or four months, spending the money you need to be involved.”

continued

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

Has Ron Wilson ‘Lost’ The Leafs?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star, I

t’s been decades since the Leafs actually ruled the hockey world, of course. They were a team to be reckoned with not that very long ago, but now this club, which hasn’t played a post-season match since 2004 and is by far the NHL’s most expensive to watch, has sunk to bottom of the standings after two weeks of this season.

The only good news is that Nazem Kadri wasn’t forced to be part of this.

“It is depressing here right now,” Leaf head coach Ron Wilson admitted after a 5-2 loss to Pittsburgh on Saturday night.

That verdict was hardly a shocker. The Leafs are plagued by substandard goaltending and kill penalties less efficiently than any other NHL club, and those two factors alone probably doomed the team to defeat at the hands of the champs.

That said, the time has come to really start wondering about the impact Wilson is having on this squad.

In a nutshell, after one full season and four games, the Leafs either aren’t listening to what Wilson is preaching or can’t execute his instructions.

read on

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

Kaleta Went Headhunting

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

There was déjà vu all over again on Thursday night with Patrick Kaleta headhunting and Petr Prucha laid-out and groggy on the ice after leaving himself vulnerable to such a malicious blow.

Kaleta, the Buffalo winger, represents the worst in this game. He appears to have no compunction whatsoever about injuring his opponents with hits that are somehow declared legal when broken down into hundredths-of-a-second video frames that obscure real life and real time intent but do not ameliorate real life consequences to the victim.

In allowing Kaleta to skate free, NHL VP Colin Campbell is off to a depressing start in the league’s effort to protect its players from malicious blows to the head. What effort (?), is right. Why is it that Campbell always gives the benefit of the doubt to the perpetrator rather than to the victim?

Why won’t the NHL take a stand here? Why won’t Campbell use the smell test as the basis for exacting punishment against Kaleta and his ilk? Who’s going to object, the remnants of the Players’ Association? That’s a good one.

more hockey topic discussed….  If you missed the Kaleta hit, you can watch it here.

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: patrick+kaleta

Meech…Boarding…3 Penalties

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Hockey Hall of Fame passes go to ITDeuce…and we had to go to the second tie-breaker (number of penalties the Wings will take against the Caps).

Hank from Buckets and the Tuz.  Kronner and Stu on the ice.  Draper takes the 19th penalty for a hook. Wings take 3 penalties and the score was 3 - 1.
Posted by ITDeuce on 10/09/09 at 10:03 AM ET

Deuce…email address is on the starboard side. Send me your mailing info and we’ll get your passes to you.

Oh, and if we’d needed the third tie-break? It was 1-0 Chicago.

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I think the club needs to continue to work to improve its performance ... but they should be OK. Barring something extraordinary that nobody anticipated and I’m not suggesting that’s going to happen, they should be fine.

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman of the state of the Florida Panthers.  Much more from Bettman on the Panthers and the league by Sarah Talalay of the Sun-Sentinel.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Hockey Notes On A Saturday Night

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

• This season, we were supposed to see the integration of “size-to-fit” or “form-fitting” goalie pads to go along with goaltenders’ size-to-fit pants and upper-body equipment.

But the pads, the most controversial item, have not been changed. Two NHL governors I spoke with are upset about it. The governors voted for these changes back in June 2008. Hockey operations man Kay Whitmore, who is the goaltending supervisor for the league, has done a ton of work on this. All the equipment manufacturers were on board with the new pads, but the NHL Players’ Association has put it in limbo because it balked last spring at how the new pads were measured….

• There’s a Jack Adams Award for top coach of the year, so why not an award for GM of the year? Last season, Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke proposed that the league establish an award for the GMs, and the GMs agreed to move on it in June. But it wasn’t clear when exactly it would happen. It now appears as though it is a go for this season and should be awarded for the first time in June at the NHL awards.

• The Penguins met with Sergei Gonchar’s agent, J.P. Barry, just before the season started, but both sides have agreed to postpone the next round of talks until January, when GM Ray Shero will have a better idea of next season’s salary cap.

more topics...

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

According To Garrioch

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

• Stan Bowman could end up being his own worst enemy.

The Blackhawks GM did Maple Leafs counterpart Brian Burke a favour by giving him back his second-round pick in 2010 to make the trade for restricted free-agent centre Phil Kessel.

The Leafs signed Kessel, 22, to a five-year, $27-million (all terms US) contract — a deal that could come back to haunt Bowman when he tries to lock up pending RFAs Patrick Kane, 20, and Jonathan Toews, 21.

“You have to think that Kessel’s contract is going to be the absolute minimum those two will accept,” said a high-profile agent. “If (Bowman) doesn’t give Burke that pick back, then the Leafs can’t do the (Kessel) deal.”...

• The Thrashers have held contract talks with pending UFA Ilya Kovalchuk, but the two sides are nowhere near a deal….

• There are whispers the NHL is talking to teams about a mandatory $10-million deposit to finance operations and minor-league teams during a potential lockout in three years. Yes, relations with the union are getting worse.

more

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

Don Cherry Tonight

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

On Coach’s Corner, Don talked about the first period Pens/Leafs, touched on the Pat Quinn fine, Flames defensive system, had a few words for Kris Letang and a few other topics.

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: don+cherry

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