Kukla's Korner

Tough Financial Times

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sean Gordon and Paul Waldie of the Globe and Mail,

Montreal Canadiens owner and Colorado-based debt-financing king George Gillett is engaged in another financial high-wire act that could have an impact on Canada’s most storied hockey franchise.

According to a lien filed in Delaware, Gillett has taken out a high-interest, $75-million (all currency U.S.) personal loan from a U.S.-based private investment fund, putting up his heavily-leveraged share of British soccer giant Liverpool Football Club as collateral….

But it’s clear Gillett is among the many NHL owners facing stormy financial seas because of the economic downturn.

Hockey industry sources say at least three other teams - the Florida Panthers, Tampa Bay Lightning and the Phoenix Coyotes - have recently taken out high-interest loans with distress lenders or private equity funds because of tightening credit in the United States.


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

Catching Up With Claude Lemieux

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

“I’m having a great time,” said Lemieux, once the focal point of Boston fans’ ire, in part the result of some legendary confrontations with Cam Neely at the old Garden. “I think I can be very helpful to any club, based on what I bring to the ice and to the dressing room. That said, I’ve waited a long time to do this, so I’m also looking for a good fit.”...

Suffice to say the Red Wings, who still smart from his ugly hit on Kris Draper years ago, likely won’t dispatch a scout to check out No. 32 in Worcester teal.

“Yeah, he’s 43, but I think that’s all a state of mind,” said Worcester coach Roy Sommer. “If you look at him, he’s got the body of a 27- or 28-year-old, and in the brief time he’s been with us, he’s helped us win [2-1-0 over the weekend].

“I think the question will be, is his mind into it? So far, it sure seems that way.”

To this point, noted Sommer, the reacclimation has been seamless.


Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, Minor League, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: claude+lemieux

Morning Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“This goes beyond hockey and beyond the game on the ice, and that’s what bothers me.  We have talked and talked and talked about being on the edge within the game, but not going over the line. We told him from the start that he can not do things that would embarrass the organization. Ever since the start here, this organization has been built on class, and there is a responsibility to the organization, to the owner and his family, and to the city and the fans to maintain that class. Play hard, push the game on the ice, but do not embarrass the organization.”

-Brett Hull on Sean Avery.  More from Mike Heika at the Dallas Stars blog.

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

Havlat May Be On The Move

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Tim Sassone of Between the Circles,

It’s interesting that Marty Havlat skated on the third line at practice Tuesday with Dave Bolland and Andrew Ladd.

Are the Hawks preparing for life after Havlat? Maybe. There are rumors out there that Havlat might be the guy GM Dale Tallon tries to move to create cap space. Havlat makes $6 million and is an unrestricted free agent after the season.

Do the Hawks need Havlat to make the playoffs? Not if they think of him as a third-liner. Besides, if they are able to trade him Tallon could turn around and use that cash on a top-six forward or a defenseman, or both.

More and more, this is looking like the way to solve the cap problem - as long as Tallon can find a team that wants Havlat and as long as Havlat stays healthy.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: martin+havlat

Hey Scott, You Should Have Thrown Your Helmet Too

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Phil Sheridan of the Philadelphia Inquirer,

It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Scott Hartnell was tired. He couldn’t catch Tampa Bay’s Ryan Malone, who was closing in on Flyers goalie Marty Biron. So he did the first thing that came to mind.

He threw his glove at Malone, giving the Lightning veteran a penalty shot with 16 seconds remaining in a tie game.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: scott+hartnell

Digging Homer and Even Sammy

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Lost in the shuffle today?  Homer, Sammy and some hard-working Diggers.  They’re taking a backseat as men across two nations discuss the merits of sloppiness.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Really?  For “Sloppy Seconds”?

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

For the love of God, Hippy Frigging Dave beat me to it.  Here’s what he had to say at 0039 EST, “Jack Bauer is gonna kick his ass.”

Exactly.  Haven’t the idiots out there learned that Bauer will take you down for slights far simpler than calling his daughter “sloppy seconds?”

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Augusta Lynx Fold

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The Augusta Lynx of the ECHL folded in mid-season today.

The team was affiliated with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

more from the AP via CBS Sportsline.

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, Minor League, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: augusta+lynx

What Could Have Been

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Russell Brooks of PhoenixCoyotes.com,

The Coyotes put about 15 months of thought and hard work into their new third jersey, which they debuted on Nov. 28 against the Colorado Avalanche.

The process for creating the new black sweaters started in August of 2007 when the team approached SME Branding about an idea for a third jersey.

“We were looking for an alternate jersey that complemented our home and road jerseys, but that was unique and something the fans would like,” Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Michael Bucek said. “We hope our fans take as much pride in this jersey as our organization does.”

continued with a slide show of numerous prototype sweaters like the one below.


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

What To Do With Kovalchuk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Farber of Sports Illustrated,

“I put thinking in the future (on the back burner) because I love hockey so much,” Kovalchuk told On The Fly. “Sometimes I get frustrated, but it’s not like I go home and cry in my pillow. We’ll get through this and be a better team.”

The question: Will Kovalchuk be around to see it?

read on with some Oiler and Norris Trophy talk too…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ilya+kovalchuck

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