Kukla's Korner

What’s Happening Now

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bob McKenzie of TSN,

The NHL trade deadline is four weeks tomorrow, the NHL general managers’ meeting is three weeks today and all across the league, there is much happening, some of which is going to dictate just how busy things are at the deadline. To wit:

Atlanta GM Don Waddell is expected to take one final stab at signing forward Marian Hossa to a long-term deal that would take him out of unrestricted free agency. If Waddell can’t sign Hossa on this next effort, it’s likely the Thrashers’ GM will initiate trade talks that would make the talented winger the highest-impact rental player available at the deadline. Atlanta is not likely to let Hossa skate into unrestricted free agency on July 1 without getting something for him at the deadline.

Buffalo GM Darcy Regier will try to get the Brian Campbell negotiations back on track. The Sabre defenceman publicly declared a week or two ago that there would be no more in-season discussions, but Regier will try to jump-start things to get a deal done. Like Hossa, if Campbell spurns the Sabres in this next go-round, he could become a big chip in the trade deadline dealings.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Average Won’t Cut It

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

To make the playoffs this season, the Blues will have to play extraordinary hockey down the stretch. Ordinary won’t cut it these days in the NHL’s Western Conference.

There is one great team on this side of the league, the Red Wings. One team, the Kings, appears to be a dead team skating.

And you can put the other 13 teams into a giant pile -– since very little separates them. Let’s take a quick look at the Blues’ competition:


Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Stars of the Week

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From NHL.com,

Ottawa Senators right wing Daniel Alfredsson, Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin and Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Pascal Leclaire have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending January 27.

Go here to check out their video highlights.


Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+ovechkin, daniel+alfredsson, pascal+leclair, stars+of+the+week

Final Words on the ASG

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Ray Slover at the Sporting News,

Young talent is, like cream, rising to the top. And like cream, it’s pretty sweet. They may struggle a bit with English, but Alexander Ovechkin, Ilya Kovalchuk, Evgeni Malkin, Anze Kopitar and other 20-something foreign-born players have a language all their own. Better yet, it’s a common language, one shared by Eric Staal, Rick Nash and the cast of characters who have something to say. And it comes across loud and clear, even without poster-boy Sidney Crosby on the scene.

We saw plenty of the NHL’s future here and it, like the Georgia morning sun, is bright.

From Ken Campbell at The Hockey News,

It has been very easy and convenient to rip the NHL All-Star Game for, oh, the past 20 years or so, but for at least one night, the league and its players seemed to grasp the importance of showcasing its stars by actually staging a competitive game.


Update 9:04pm ET: The THN story above was changed since I originally linked it.  An important feature near the top of the piece was Campbell’s concern about access to Eric Staal after the game.  There has been some suggestion that the original article was altered. Perhaps not a big deal, but it’s worth mentioning now because the allegations prompted this official response from Mike Sundheim of the Carolina Hurricanes later in the day.


Finally, below is a transcript from post-game Q&A’s with All Star MVP Eric Staal and goalie Tim Thomas.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: all+star+game, asg, atlanta+2008

Yotes Sponsor PGA Golfer

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via SportsBusiness Journal (paid sub.),

The Phoenix Coyotes signed a one-year marketing deal with PGA Tour player Jeff Quinney to wear the team’s logo on his shirt during all tournaments, beginning with this week’s FBR Open in Phoenix.

Quinney, a 29-year-old graduate of Arizona State and resident of Scottsdale, Ariz., won the U.S. Amateur in 2000 and is starting his second full year on the PGA Tour. He finished 57th on the money list in 2007.

While Quinney is not the first golfer to wear the logo of a professional team during tournament play, the deal is believed to be the first in which a team has directly signed a golfer.

Financial terms were not available, but Coyotes President and COO Doug Moss called an estimate of low-to-mid-six figures “not too far off.”

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

2008 AHL All-Star Classic

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

No NHL games tonight, so why not sit back and catch the AHL ASG?

Check out the TV, web and radio broadcast schedule.  Broadcast begins at 7:00pm ET tonight.

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, Minor League, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Home Team Discount

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,

On the heels of the Dion Phaneuf All-Star Love-in, let’s get one thing straight about the contract the Calgary Flames defenceman will eventually sign for employment next year.

If indeed he is going to remain in Calgary, he will have to leave money on the table. A ton of it.

Thanks to Kevin Lowe’s desperate attempts to throw money away by way of offer sheets to restricted free agents, today’s NHL is such Phaneuf would certainly attract open market offers this summer well over the $7 million a year captain Jarome Iginla makes.

continued and more NHL talk…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dion+phaneuf

The Unique Qualities Of The ASG

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,

Every year the game is played and every year the same questions are asked. What can be done to make it more competitive? What can be done to make it more relevant? What can be done to make it more like a real NHL game?

And here’s the answer. Nothing. There’s nothing that can be done; nothing that will turn the all-star game into a showcase event that captures hockey’s best qualities.

You can hope for some speed and skill and a close, competitive affair, but you can’t replicate those things that make the sport attractive.

Once you accept this, you are free to appreciate this affair for what it is and even revel in its unique qualities.


Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: all-star+game

No Respect For Columbus

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,

Unfortunately, there are times when the city in general, and the Blue Jackets in particular, are not held in any esteem.

The NHL All-Star Weekend provided a case in point. First, goaltender Pascal Leclaire was left off the Western Conference team. Then, Rick Nash was denied the MVP award. Conspiracy? I can’t say there isn’t.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink

No Deal With Fabian

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the Detroit News,

Wings general manager Ken Holland , who is in Binghamton, N.Y., for tonight’s American Hockey League All-Star Game, said Sunday the team has not reached any agreement with Swedish prospect Fabian Brunnstrom.

“We’ve made our pitch,” Holland said. “My understanding is he’s going through his options and trying to make a decision on where he wants to play. The teams have made their offers, so it’s now really in his hands.”

This Brunnstrom is reminding me more and more of Sidd Finch...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: fabian+brunnstrom

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