Kukla's Korner

The Trouble With Avery

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Heika at the Dallas Stars Blog,

I like Sean Avery’s game. He’s ultra competitive, he has some skills, and he can help a team win in the short-term.

My biggest concern is the Stars have tied themeselves to him for the long-term with the four-year, $15.5 million contract they signed this summer….

But here is my concern about Avery _ I believe he has bought into his own hype far too much. He is performing pretty much all of the time now. In interviews, in appearances, in games, he is trying to live up to the legend he has created. And, in my opinion, that will eventually wear on people (and probably wear him down).

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sean+avery

The Best UFA Shopping

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Wigge of NHL.com,

On the surface, you might ask, “which teams have been the best shoppers?”

Rangers—No matter what you think the Broadway Blueshirts will look like without star wing Jaromir Jagr after he bolted to big money in Russia, Markus Naslund has been ready for a new hockey life, and the Rangers are hoping it will begin in New York where centers Scott Gomez, Chris Drury and Brandon Dubinsky have a way of making wings perform better. Not to mention the 26 goals by Nikolai Zherdev that should improve in much the same way. What puts the Rangers over the top this offseason, however, is the signing of free-agent defensemen Wade Redden, Dimitri Kalinin along with the re-signing of Michael Rozsival.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Central Division Top UFAs

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Edward Fraser of the Hockey News,

As I’ve done with the Pacific, Southeast, Northwest and Northeast over the past four weeks, here are my picks for the top three ’09 UFAs from each team in the Central Division. I’ll finish the tour next Friday with the Atlantic.

DETROIT RED WINGS
Henrik Zetterberg ($2.9 million)
He’ll never get close to UFAdom; you can bet each of GM Ken Holland’s Stanley Cup rings on that.

Marian Hossa ($7.45 million)
Even if the Wings don’t repeat as champs and Hossa doesn’t get the Cup he so desires, don’t expect him to take another one-year deal. How does eight years and $68 million sound?

Johan Franzen ($1.15 million)
A shoo-in for the Conn Smythe if he didn’t go down with an injury in the playoffs, the 28-year-old is the heir apparent to an aging Tomas Holmstrom.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Detroit Red Wings, Nashville Predators, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Sabres Ranked Too Low

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Harrington at Sabres Edge,

Quite an exciting day to get the mail and get my copy of the annual yearbook from The Hockey News….

Be sure to check out their conference predictions on Page 64. They pick Detroit to win the Stanley Cup again. No biggie. But the game’s premier publication has the Sabres 11th—yes, 11th—in the East. At this point in the summer, I’m still on the fence about the Sabres as a playoff team but I doubt they’re going to get worse either.

read on with the complete conference rankings for both conferences…

On a side note, you can purchase the digital version of the Hockey News Yearbook here.  When you get to the page just click “Yearbook 2008 Issue $3.99”.

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

Sometimes They Just Don’t Get It

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ted’s Take,

From time to time, you have heard me rail against media pundits for their lack of criticality; original thinking; creativity; and basic non-understanding of what they are writing about.

Well here is another rant. This time against Ross McKeon and his blog post mentioning contraction of six NHL teams including the Washington Capitals. Read it here.

First, the throw away notion of shuttering six major league teams is just mean-spirited. Those six teams employ thousands and thousands of people and support tens of thousands of families. I guess Ross wants us to lay off all those people in the toughest economy ever. And those teams generate dollars for their cities in taxes and they generate dollars to hundreds and hundreds of small businesses as vendor/ suppliers.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ted+leonsis

Can Gordon Succeed With The Islanders

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Kelley at Sports Illustrated,

It’s possible it could all work out for Gordon. Owner Charles Wang might suddenly develop some patience and Snow might forge a relationship that would allow Gordon to grow as a coach while Snow grows as a general manager….

But at the end of the day, (Scott) Gordon signed on to coach a poor hockey team that struggles to attract talent from the ownership office on down. Want proof? Just dig up that picture of just two seasons ago when Wang was surrounded by Nolan, Milbury, former GM Neil Smith and advisors like Pat LaFontaine and ask where they—and the Islanders—are now. In less time than you can say “what the heck”, only Wang remains and the Stanley Cup is not in that picture.

more

added 11:45am, Thanks to Hockey This Morning on NHL Home Ice XM 204, we present an interview from this morning with Scott Gordon

Download or listen on the player below.


Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: scott+gordon

Blues Want Shanahan

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

After keeping mum on the topic in recent weeks, Blues President John Davidson on Thursday voiced heavy interest in returning one of the most popular players in club history to the city where he starred from 1991 to 1995.

“We’ve thrown our hat in the ring,” Davidson said. “When it comes down to it, Brendan has to make a decision that’s right for him and his family. It could be New York. But we hope he explores the Blues as a viable option.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brendan+shanahan

Trouble Brewing Again

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Evan Weiner at the NY Sun,

There is a scheduled meeting on September 4 in New York where representatives from the NHL, the KHL, and other ice hockey federations that is supposed to tackle issues such as the transfer agreements and the logistics of holding a hockey World Cup in 2012, but NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly isn’t so sure the league should be at the meeting.

“We are not certain we are going to go forward with the meeting at this point. Our position with the IIHF has been very clear. If the KHL doesn’t disqualify Alexander Radulov from playing in their league so he can abide to his contractual obligations to Nashville, we have no interest in meeting with them and or engaging in discussions over any broader cooperative relationship with them,” Daly told The New York Sun.

more

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

A previously secret meeting in Italy on Wednesday between Gary Bettman and KHL president Alexander Medvedev not only failed to broker a resolution on Alexander Radulov’s contractual situation, but rather ended with the parties an ocean apart on a working agreement, The Post has learned….

When Bettman threatened legal action, Medvedev essentially invited the commissioner to present his case in Russian court, reminding the commissioner that the NHL success rate in the Russian legal system is equal to the zero-percent success rate of Russian hockey interests in the US court system.

more

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: khl

Ferraro To TSN

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

Former Oilers SportsNet colour commentator Ray Ferraro is going to work for TSN, replacing Glen Healy, who took a paying position with the NHL Players Association. Two possible candidates to replace Ferraro are former Penguin winger Rob Brown, who has done some good Oiler pay-per-view work, and Rod Phillips’ longtime radio sidekick, Morley Scott.

Here’s another longshot name to consider: onetime Oiler coach and goalie Ron Low, who was dumped by the Senators.

more hockey notes including Geoff Sanderson looking for work.

Our favorite for the Sportsnet job would be Morley Scott.  Remember the day Alanah spent with Morley?

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ray+ferraro

Morning Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I think it is fine the way it is now, everything is always the goalies’ fault.  It makes me laugh.  Whenever there’s something wrong in hockey, it’s always the goalies’ fault.  Every player thinks our gear is too big.”

-Pascal Leclaire in the Sporting News Today

Heck, I thought everyone blamed Gary Bettman when something went wrong!

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pascal+leclaire

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