Kukla's Korner

Canadiens Have Money To Spend

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette,

For the first time since the lockout, the salary cap won’t rise. But it is expected to be in the $54 million-$56 million U.S. range, and the Canadiens have 11 NHL players under contract with a commitment of only $23.5 million.

General manager Bob Gainey gave himself a great deal of flexibility by finishing the season with 10 players who could become unrestricted free agents on July 1 as well as three restricted free agents. But there is also the potential of gaping holes in the roster.

For starters, Gainey must make decisions on which of his own potential UFAs to keep, and hope that the keepers also decide they want to stay in Montreal.

Once that task is completed, the next step will be to assess the available free agents and hope he can lure some of them to Montreal. This has proved to be a difficult task in the past, but money shouldn’t be a problem.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Why Zdeno Chara Was A Poor Norris Trophy Choice

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

The NHL awards were announced on Thursday.  One award winner, which I think was chosen poorly, was Zdeno Chara of the Boston Bruins who won the Norris Trophy.  He was nominated alongside Mike Green of the Washington Capitals and Nicklas Lidstrom of the Detroit red Wings.  Either of them would have made a better selection.  In the First All Star Team voting, Green did defeat Chara, which shows that the race was close in the voter’s minds.  Slightly changing the parameters in which they vote, changed the result (for the Norris they get one first place vote and for the all star team they get two).

Zdeno Chara was considered a Norris favorite before the 2008/09 season began.  He had been a nominee in 2008, where he finished third behind Lidstrom and Dion Phaneuf of the Calgary Flames.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

Remember The NHL/NHLPA Partnership?  Well…

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Basement flooding at 12:30am is not good, may as well do some posting while drying out some large towels…

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

The stability and financial future of the Phoenix Coyotes was one of several topics discussed by members of the National Hockey League Players’ Association at its annual summer meetings for North American players, held here Friday, and according to Glenn Healy, the NHLPA’s director of player affairs, there is frustration that they have no say in the matter.

“You need to have leverage and rights before you can take a position,” Healy said. “We have no ability to dictate anything.

“We were told in September that the team was okay. We were told in February that the team was okay. In fact, at that point, [the NHL] had already infused tens of millions of dollars into the team. Any media outlet that wrote that the team was in trouble was ridiculed.

“So from that standpoint, we basically had the burlap bag over our heads with regards to the Phoenix situation, which is disappointing because we consider ourselves major stakeholders in the game, and it affects not only our 23 players there, but a whole bunch of players who used to play there as well.”

continued

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

Wild Must Decide On Gaborik

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants at the Star-Tribune,

As for Marian Gaborik, Chuck Fletcher said he “intends to push the process forward next week so we try to get a sense from them” whether or not he’s willing to re-sign in Minnesota.

Fletcher won’t put a deadline on Gaborik, but he did say, he’s working the phones on trades, and a lot of what he does will depend on what he hears from Gaborik. There are things out there “that make sense for us,” he says.

If Gaborik isn’t re-signed by the Draft and a trade is available to make, Fletcher may just have to pull the trigger even if it means definitely closing the door on Gaborik.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: marian+gaborik

Don’t Add An Additional Winter Classic Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Burnside of ESPN, I

nstead of protecting and nurturing one of the league’s shining success stories since the end of the 2004-05 lockout, the NHL is now entertaining the notion of destroying the very uniqueness that has made the Winter Classic so compelling by trying to jam another outdoor event onto the schedule.

Two? Why not three or four outdoor games?

The idea Canadian franchises and/or the CBC are forcing the NHL to essentially give Canada its own outdoor game is ludicrous.

No Canadian outdoor game? Boo-hoo. Get over yourselves.

more

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

NHLPA Will Turn Down Staged Fight Rule

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Burnside and Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

It appears the “staged fights” rule recommended by the NHL’s 30 GMs will not see the light of day.

The players discussed it at their meeting here this week and they recommended to their members on the competition committee to vote against it. The committee needs seven of 10 votes to pass a new rule and they won’t get it if all five players vote no next Thursday when the group meets in Montreal.

The union brought in a number of tough guys Wednesday and they shared their universal thumbs down on the “staged fights” rule proposition.

continued plus some goaltender equipment & Pronger talk too…

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

Sabres Still Talking Foot In The Crease Goal

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from WIVB,

Ten years ago, most of us were watching the same thing on television, game six of the 1999 Stanley Cup finals.

Now some members of the Buffalo Sabres are talking about the triple overtime thriller that ended with “no goal.”

continued

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

Players Have Questions For Bettman

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP via TSN,

Gary Bettman is about to get a rare audience with the NHL Players’ Association. He better come ready for some tough questions.

The NHL commissioner will speak to players during their annual North American meetings on Saturday morning, marking the first time in his 16 years on the job that it has happened.

The players are looking forward to it.

“I think he’ll probably come in and talk to us for 10 minutes and then I’m hoping he does open the floor up for questions,” Calgary Flames defenceman Robyn Regehr said Friday.

“Because I think as players we have some really good questions for him.

continued

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

At This Point, Predators UFAs Not Close To Signing

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from John Glennon of the Tennessean,

The closer the calendar creeps toward July 1, the less likely it appears the Predators will sign many of their more significant potential unrestricted free agents.

That was the sentiment expressed Friday by Predators general manager David Poile when asked about the status of players including Steve Sullivan, Joel Ward, Vern Fiddler and Greg Zanon.

Poile said he planned to speak with the agents for all four players in the coming week and didn’t rule out any re-signings.

But he added that “it just feels like we’re going to July 1 (unrestricted free agency) with everybody unless somebody comes back to say they’re changing their positions. We haven’t had any of that.

“What we’re offering and what they’re asking for is a substantial difference, and that’s why those deals haven’t been done.’’

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

NHLPA In The Dark Regading Talk Of Winter Classic Game In Calgary

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Darren Dreger of TSN,

While there have been preliminary discussions about the possibility of an outdoor game, January 1 in Calgary between the NHL and Calgary officials, the National Hockey League Players Association says it’s unaware of the planned doubleheader.

‘‘This is all news to me. We are breaking news, this is an insider moment that Calgary is potentially going to get an outdoor game and this is the first I’ve heard of it,’’ Glenn Healy, the NHLPA’s director of player affairs told TSN.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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