Kukla's Korner

Atlanta Working On Contract Deal With Afinogenov

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the Twitter of Bob McKenzie, Free agent Maxim Afinogenov has earned a spot on the Atlanta Thrashers, who are in the process of getting a contract done.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: maxim+afinogenov

Atlanta Thrashers Ready For Some Hockey

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Rob Schremp Claimed By Islanders

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

In case you missed multiple reports, Rob Schremp was claimed by the Islanders today.

added 12:32pm, via Katie Strang of Isles Files at Newsday,

“It was something Scott [Gordon] and I talked about yesterday when he was put on waivers,” Islanders general manager Garth Snow said. “For us it’s a situation where we can give a highly-skilled player with great vision on the ice a new opportunity. It’ll be a good change in scenery for him.”

Said Scott Gordon: “He’s got incredible skill.”

“He has the opportunity of a second chance. What he does with it is in his hands.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: rob+schremp

Challenges Face Tavares

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damien Cox of the Spin at the Toronto Star,

Five years after announcing the 150-acre Lighthouse Project, Wang still hasn’t seen a shovel in the ground. The scheme would include a new arena, commercial and residential development including a canal and all kinds of goodies, so naturally there are multiple layers of bureaucracy and politics to wade through, just as there would be in the GTA if such a plan were ever proposed.

Wang has complained the process is taking far too long, which is why he has set an unofficial deadline, and why local politicos are balking.

“We don’t tell them when they have to bring in a Stanley Cup,” said one town official quoted in Newsday.

That’s nasty. The once-great Isles have a lease at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum until 2015, but we already know from Phoenix the NHL doesn’t much worry about that stuff.

So into this maelstrom of insolvency and uncertainty goes Tavares. Stamkos had to deal with a lot of on-ice and off-ice issues in Tampa last season and survived, so theoretically so can Tavares.

It won’t be easy. But it helps that not as many people are watching the Islanders as once did.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: john+tavares

Addressing The Red Wings ‘Decline’

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Craig Custance of the Sporting News,

The interview had been over for a good 15 minutes when Mike Babcock re-emerged from a nearby room.

“Let me edit that story,” the Red Wings’ coach said while walking briskly toward a reporter sitting behind a laptop. Something had irked Babcock, though the glint in his eyes suggested he also might be teasing—a little. Maybe.
“You guys have been writing that story since I got here,” Babcock said before being sidetracked by another interview request.

So what was the topic that bothered Babcock? It was the suggestion his Red Wings are on the decline.

It’s not a new idea, but this year there’s a new wrinkle: Pittsburgh has put itself in position to replace the Wings as the model NHL franchise, the team everyone wants to beat, the team on the cusp of a dynasty. All because of one Game 7 loss.

If the Red Wings win one more game last season, we’re talking possible three-peat. Instead, we’re wondering whether the reigning champ Penguins will become this generation’s Edmonton Oilers, with Sidney Crosby playing the part of Wayne Gretzky.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

NHL On Versus Begins Thurdsay

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NEW YORK, N.Y. (September 29, 2009)-VERSUS, the exclusive cable television home of the National Hockey League (NHL), kicks off its fifth year of NHL coverage on Thurs., Oct. 1, with a must-see night of hockey featuring three of the best teams during last year’s regular season.  Opening night will also showcase NHL superstar Alexander Ovechkin’s season debut and the Colorado Avalanche honoring 20-year NHL veteran Joe Sakic by retiring his jersey.  The double-header begins with a clash between Eastern Conference titans when the Washington Capitals visit the Boston Bruins at 7 p.m. ET, followed by the Avalanche hosting the San Jose Sharks at 10 p.m. ET.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

NHLPA Discusses Events Leading To Kelly Firing

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Darren Dreger of TSN,

The NHL Players’ Association held a conference call on Monday night which consisted of the player representatives and full membership.

A source said the call wasn’t contentious at all and the group talked about the procedure and events leading up to Paul Kelly’s firing and was asked to take the discussion back to their teammates for further analysis.

No NHLPA staff, advisory board members or even ombudsman Buzz Hargrove were allowed to participate in the 2 1/2 hour meeting.

Another conference call will be held on October 4, at which point the executive board will recommend how to handle Kelly’s firing.

If the board feels Kelly was fired with just cause, then the remainder of his contract may not be honoured. If that were to happen, it’s believed Kelly would swiftly challenge this decision legally and a new fight will begin.

continued

Filed in: NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Can The Wild Get Out Of The Gate Quickly?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rachel Blount of the Star Tribune,

If the Wild is to return to the playoffs after missing out last season, it cannot afford to get out of the gate slowly. Still, it’s impossible to predict just how soon this promising roster can get Richards’ system into its bones—and rid itself of the defense-first style that had become as natural as breathing. Center Mikko Koivu and left winger Andrew Brunette haven’t played a game yet because of injuries, and Pierre-Marc Bouchard, James Sheppard, Benoit Pouliot and Shane Hnidy also have missed valuable ice time.

When they haven’t skated, the coaches have been teaching them the fine points of a more aggressive, attacking offense by diagramming plays on a board and showing them video. But such a philosophical shift requires repetition in the crucible of competition in order to lock it in. Richards hopes his players’ experience and savvy can help them get up to speed quickly, particularly with the major changes on special teams.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Bloggers Preview The West

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from SlapShot at the NY Times,

We’ve recruited a new passel of independent bloggers to join our crew from last spring, and here they are, just in time for Thursday’s N.H.L. season openers. Below, the Western contingent of our Hockey Night in Blogdom gang takes a team-by-team, snide-remark-by-snide-remark look at the season ahead. Entries appear in order of their clubs’ finish in the regular season. Behold the future!

Sean Payton of Anyone but Detroit
Will the Avs be better or worse than last year, and where will they finish?

The Avalanche will be better — they finished 15th in the West last year so there is nowhere to go but up. I’ve got them finishing 13th, ahead of Nashville and the mess currently known as the Phoenix Coyotes.

What team would you most like to see fail this year, and why?

The name of my blog is “Anyone but Detroit” for a reason. The reason I want to see Detroit fail this season? Todd Bertuzzi is now a Red Wing.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

How Much Longer Will Owners Support Bettman?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Richard C. Powers is the associate dean and executive director of MBA and Master of Finance program at the Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto.

from Richard Powers at the Toronto Sun,

As we await the decision on the fate of the Phoenix Coyotes, there is an interesting angle to the story that should be front and centre—why does the NHL continue to push its southern U.S. strategy when everything seems to suggest it hasn’t worked?

More to the point, how has NHL commissioner Gary Bettman managed to keep his position despite numerous problems and fiascos south of the border? In just about any other job, he would have been turfed out with last week’s salad.

Let’s examine the facts. Phoenix is just the tip of the iceberg.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: gary+bettman

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