Kukla's Korner

Bouwmeester Talks Continue

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from George Richards of the Miami Herald,

There is a thought the Panthers secretly hoped Bouwmeester would sign an offer sheet with another NHL team this summer, giving the Panthers a chance to match the deal and lock Bouwmeester in long-term.

Since Bouwmeester elected to go to arbitration, he cannot sign with another team; Martin said the Panthers aren’t going to trade him.

‘‘We’re confident we’ll get something done,’’ Martin said. ``That’s our approach right now. That’s the way we’re going. We still are having discussions. It’s been a process that’s been good on both parts. It hasn’t been ugly. It’s been healthy discussions from both sides. We’re just trying to find a meaningful pay scale he’ll be happy with.’‘

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jay+bouwmeester

Playing With The Kids

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Cruickshank of the Calgary Herald,

To have hockey-playing giants show up in their villages must have been stunning for kids in Mozambique.

Last month’s encounters were no less eye-opening for said giants—Robyn Regehr and Zdeno Chara.

The National Hockey League players’ one-week tour through the nation on Africa’s southeast coast—on behalf of Right To Play (motto: “Creating a healthier and safer world for children through the power of sport and play’‘)—provided more than a few stunning moments.

continued

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: robyn+regehr, zdeno+chara

Best Sports Logos

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from InventorSpot,

Some sports teams have had logos that have lasted for what seems like an eternity; whether for more than half a century full of glory or a few struggling decades. But no matter what criticisms or financial issues a team has faced, the logo still stands on strong.

The following are 10 great logos that have solidified teams and major league sports.

continued and three NHL teams listed including the Winged Wheel as #1.

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Most Important Signing

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rob Oller of the Columbus Dispatch,

The biggest offseason signing in Blue Jackets history—the face of the franchise, mind you—doesn’t score goals or play defense, isn’t much of a skater and struggles to move the puck. His weight hovers around 275 pounds, on a 5-foot-10ish frame, and the only time he has worn the C is when jokesters liken him to Captain Kangaroo.

This is the guy the Jackets are pinning their hopes on? Yes, and it’s hard to argue against them. Ken Hitchcock, who signed a threeyear extension yesterday to coach the Blue Jackets through the 2011-12 season, is more important to the team than any recent free-agent signing or draft pick.

continued

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

Barry Smith and His Team

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News,

“It was a new frontier that I had a new chance to explore,” (Barry) Smith said Wednesday. “I wasn’t going to be a mercenary and go there for the money. I wouldn’t have done that. It is a new frontier in hockey. You’re seeing what happens with the new league and the new process of North Americans.”

The league had its hiccups, but it’s growing. On his first road trip, his team was forced to walk a mile from its plane to catch a bus after a bomb scare at the airport. On his second road trip, the team hotel caught fire and, with no fire department nearby, was extinguished by employees.

“It was like walking into 1950,” he said with a laugh.

more

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: barry+smith

Canucks Still Talking Contract With Demitra

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province,

I’m still very good friends with Pavol and talk to him all the time,” (Geoff) Courtnall, a former Canuck, said Wednesday from Victoria. “I hadn’t seen him in a year and he came out before he went back to Slovakia.

“We only had one day and night together and he told me he loves coming to Vancouver. I told him if the Canucks are one of the teams that comes around July 1 [free agency], you should definitely think of playing there.”

Demitra has done just that.

Not only has the former Minnesota Wild forward stated that the Canucks top his wish list—a Slovakian newspaper has reported he’s close to signing a three-year, $12-million-US deal—general manager Mike Gillis has acknowledged contract dialogue with his former client.

The only problem might be term, and it wouldn’t be surprising if Gillis is trying to get Demitra to commit to two years instead of three.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pavol+demitra

What Happened To Ray

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

Before Emery was bought out of the final two years of his $6.75-million contract by the Senators, some league executives were predicting that teams “would be lined up” to sign the netminder, but it never happened.

It’s believed Emery was offered nothing more than a tryout by a couple of teams, with no promise of a contract.

This is the goaltender that led the Senators to the Stanley Cup final two years ago and now he can’t even get a sniff in the NHL. Why is that?

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ray+emery

Leclaire Contract Update

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Puck-rakers,

Talked to agent Don Meehan today (Wednesday). He’s expecting to talk with Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson again on Thursday regarding goaltender Pascal Leclaire, and it sounds like the talks are heating up ... in a good way. It’s believed to be a three-year deal. Money is the issue, but they might be getting close.

I’ve been saying all along that Leclaire signing an offer sheet is unlikely. I still believe that’s the case. But if you’re looking for a candidate, look no further than the Colorado Avalanche. First off, the Avs have quite possibly the worst goaltending tandem in the NHL…

more on Columbus

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pascal+leclaire

Islanders Surprise Witt With Contract Offer

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from On the Islanders Beat at Newsday,

(Brendan) Witt wondered, too, which is why the decision by general manager Garth Snow and owner Charles Wang to give him a two-year extension worth $6 million that will keep him on Long Island through the 2010-11 season is so meaningful. “I was surprised when they told me,” Witt said last night from his summer home in Florida. “I was like, ‘Wow.’ Most teams, the way they operate is they don’t make that decision until Christmas when they realize which direction the team is going, and they ask what you can get for them.

“Snowy has always complimented me on the way I play, the ‘warrior-type mentality.’ I appreciate that, and I appreciate Charles agreeing to do it, too. That shows a lot of loyalty, which you do not find in major league sports too often….

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brendan+witt

Pittsburgh Won’t Forget Laraque

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Empty Netters,

Laraque was unlike anything we’ve seen here in Pittsburgh. He was a black hockey player of Haitian heritage who had corn rows, spoke two languages and dominated just about any fight he was a part of. He was so dominant of a fighter, many opposing goons just simply weren’t all that eager to drop the gloves with “BGL.” And when Laraque did get a chance to go at it, more often than not his fights were fairly boring due to Laraque’s immense strength.

Our first chance to see Laraque ply his craft came in a game against the Rangers March 10, 2007. Colton Orr was the brave soul who decided he wanted to test Laraque:

more with many fight videos…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: georges+laraque

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