Kukla's Korner

Saku Koivu In A Different Place

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

The he NHL’s schedule maker occasionally shows a keen sense of timing – and nowhere is that more evident than in the first full week of the 2009-10 regular season.

We get to see Koivu v. Koivu right off the top and the chance to revisit the decision made by the former Montreal Canadiens captain to seek his fortune in sunny California….

Even with a game against younger brother Mikko’s Minnesota Wild next up on the schedule, Koivu’s inquisitors amounted to exactly two reporters. It is just one of the many culture changes for the 34-year-old, who was told by the Canadiens last June that after nine years as team captain, they were going down a different path.

Koivu pondered the Wild as an option, but ultimately chose to join old friend and Finnish countryman Teemu Selanne with the Ducks – about as radical a move as possible within the geography and culture of the NHL. Even though they’ve played together on national teams in the past, it so far hasn’t exactly been a match made in hockey heaven.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: saku+koivu

Khabibulin’s Game Can Be Better

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

Nikolai Khabibulin has had a stellar NHL career, but the new Edmonton Oilers goaltender concedes his work through training camp and the first league game has been spotty.

After an 18-save, 4-0 shutout in his first pre-season game against the Florida Panthers, he’s allowed 12 goals in his last 72 shots. It’s obviously early, and the alarm bells shouldn’t be going off, but he has to be better than that, for sure, if the Oilers want a playoff spot.

“There’s been some positives and some negatives ... right now it’s a little uneven,” said Khabibulin, who is one win shy of 300 for his career, which would put him in an exclusive club of only 24 NHL goaltenders.

“I haven’t played my best yet.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nikolai+khabibulin

Help Send a Minor League Team to the World Juniors 2010

Blog: KK Members Blog By timbrref

Hey there, hockey fans!

I’m writing to see if you’d be interested in helping a minor league hockey team make it to the 2010 World Junior Hockey Championships in Saskatoon. Through a recently launched website, http://timbrtube.ca you a,nd hockey enthusiasts across the country can make that dream a reality. We’re encouraging minor league hockey teams to shoot fun, whacky and outrageous hockey videos showing off their team spirit for the chance to score an all expenses paid trip for their entire team to the big event in December.

It’s easy! All the teams have to do is shoot a video, upload it to timbrtube.ca and rally their friends, families and communities to rock the vote. The top ranked video will win the big prize – a four-day pass for the entire team to check out watch the best of the best show down in Saskatoon!

Of course, the fun isn’t just for the minor league teams. For any hockey fanatic, the videos will be a blast to watch and ultimately it will be your votes that decide who gets to go. Tell your friends and keep checking back for the latest and greatest videos on timbrtube.

While you’re there, make sure you learn the ropes of hockey spectatorship from yours truly. I’d hate to have to call you for lipping, henhousing or hornblowing but that penalty box won’t fill itself!

Now hurry over to http://timbrtube.ca before I call you for slacking…

The Ref

Website: http://timbrtube.ca
Twitter: @timbrref
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/timbrtube

Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: 2010, contest, saskatoon, world+juniors

Havlat Brings His Game To Minnesota

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Brothers of the Pioneer Press,

Martin Havlat is no Marian Gaborik.

Many associated with the Wild believe that’s a good thing.

When Gaborik, the Wild’s all-time scoring leader and all-time leader in groin injuries, skated away to the New York Rangers through free agency last summer, Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher moved quickly to obtain Havlat, another Eastern European scoring sensation whose statistics are similar to Gabby’s.

Said Fletcher: “They’re different hockey players. The intention wasn’t to replace Marian Gaborik, but (Havlat) was one of the top free agents available.”

At 28, Havlat is “entering the prime of his career,” Fletcher noted. “He’s a talented player, a player who was nearly a point-a-game player in Chicago last season, a dynamic offensive player. He can score goals, but he’s also a terrific playmaker.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: martin+havlat

I’m A Wing Fan.  I’ll Damn Well Panic When I Feel Like It.

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Can someone remind me if I’ve ever told Mike Chen to STFU?  I seem to recall that I have.  If not?  It’s time.

Mike…don’t tell me when to stress about my Wings.  Don’t tell me when to panic and don’t tell me it’s not time to drink in the street.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

The NHLPA Will Try To Negotiate A Settlement With Paul Kelly, After That, Who Knows

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Allan Maki of the Globe and Mail,

The National Hockey League Players’ Association conducted its fair share of business Sunday night, including an executive board vote in favour of negotiating a contract settlement with former executive director Paul Kelly.

That much is clear.

What’s open to debate is how the 30-member executive board voted on tearing up the five-year contract of legal counsel Ian Penny and firing ombudsman Buzz Hargrove and advisory board chairman Ron Pink. Sources have said the executive did precisely that only to learn the vote didn’t count since several players had dropped off the call because of its six-hour length. Others have said it was more a straw poll than an official vote.

The NHLPA’s constitution calls for 25 players to form a quorum and 20 votes to pass a motion. Sources said there were votes on the future of Penny, Hargrove and Pink but that the 25 and 20 numbers were not reached thereby rendering the process meaningless.

continued

Filed in: NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Fired Ref Dean Warren Gets His Hearing

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Robert Cribb of the Toronto Star,

Warren, who was fired last year and is seeking reinstatement, has filed a complaint against the league claiming he was wrongfully terminated for his union work on behalf of the NHL Officials Association.

The league claims Warren was fired for “substandard performance.”

“In my mind there was a number of penalties called in the last two games that didn’t exist,” said Walkom, a former president of the officials’ assocation and who remains an on-ice referee with the league.

Those calls led players to react to Warren in a “contemptuous way,” he said.

Asked why Warren was chosen as one of 22 officials to serve in the playoffs that year, Walkom said Warren “was one of the top guys focused on calling the (NHL) standard.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Officiating, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dean+warren

Never Thought I Would Be Using ‘Goose Loonie’s’ In A Headline, But I Am

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star,

With the Detroit Tigers facing the Minnesota Twins in a tie-breaker for the Central Division title today, slugger Miguel Cabrera’s drunken escapades Friday night have engulfed the club in the biggest sporting controversy in Detroit since the Goose Loonie’s incident in Edmonton involving the Detroit Red Wings in 1988.

The clock seemed to spin backwards 21 years for Detroit-area sports fans Monday as word leaked out about Cabrera staying out all night drinking at Birmingham’s Townsend Hotel with friends on the Chicago White Sox.

In 1988, Windsor native Bob Probert was among eight Wings who broke curfew drinking in an Edmonton bar the night before Game 5 of their NHL semifinal versus the Oilers. Edmonton won the game 8-4 and the series the next evening.

“To compare Cabrera to Bob Probert would be a real disservice to Miguel,” said Jimmy Devellano, who is a vice-president with both the Tigers and Wings and was Detroit’s NHL general manager in 1988.

“Bob was in trouble every week. Cabrera doesn’t have a problem to the extent Bob Probert did. Believe me, if he did, I’d know it.”

continued

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

12.9% Is Final Escrow Number For Last Season

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Bob McKenzie of TSN,

The final escrow number (basically the percentage of player salaries the players gave back to the NHL for league overspending) for last season has been made official and it’s 12.9 per cent.

That means whatever the face value of a contract was for 2008-09, the player actually receives 12.9 per cent less than that.

But since the amount of escrow money withheld last season was around 18 per cent, the players will be getting a cheque cut, worth about five per cent of their salary. It’s not a refund per se, since the money collected belonged to them in the first place.

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

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“We had a good practice yesterday and guys were jumping again today.  But from everything you read in the paper, we better be jumping because it seems like every time we come into this building there’s a crisis and we end up in the middle of the damned crisis.”

“I wish it was just a normal time, just a normal game but we seem to come in here always when they’re trying to right their ship.

“This is three times in a row we’ve done this and we don’t want to be the brunt of it again.”

-Columbus Coach Ken Hitchcock talking about facing the Canucks tonight.  More by Gordon McIntyre at the White Towel.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ken+hitchcock

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