Kukla's Korner

Waiting On Scott Niedermayer

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Wood of Ducks Blog at the OC Register,

Ducks defenseman Scott Niedermayer and his family are planning to travel Sunday from Orange County to their off-season home in Cranbrook, British Columbia.

Sometime between then and next weekend’s NHL entry draft in Montreal, Niedermayer is expected to reveal his intentions for the coming season to Ducks general manager Bob Murray….

News from Niedermayer, of course, could be that he wants to continue to play, but is interested in entertaining offers from other teams.

“I haven’t thought a lot about that,” Niedermayer said. “First, I need to get to the spot where I’m going to play or I’m not going to play. Am I considering other possibilities? I definitely haven’t thought a lot about it. It’s been good here, and our family is comfortable here.”

Murray expects Niedermayer’s younger brother, checking-line right wing Rob Niedermayer, and defenseman Francois Beauchemin to explore free-agent options beginning July 1.

“I’ll get a chance to see if I can match (any offer to Beauchemin) after a couple of days,” Murray said.

more including Murray has had contract talks with James Wisniewski.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: scott+niedermayer

Islanders Beat Writer Feels Duchene Will Be Taken #1

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Greg Logan of On the Islanders Beat at Newsday,

I don’t think the Islanders are putting up a smokescreen. I believe their interest in Brampton center Matt Duchene is real. At the beginning of the season, I think he was considered a cut below the top two. But as the season progressed and Duchene combined with Cody Hodgson, last year’s No. 10 pick, to lead Brampton to the Ontario Hockey League finals before losing to Windsor, I sensed the stealth pick might be making a run up a lot of draft boards.

Suddenly, Duchene’s comparables became “Steve Yzerman” and “Joe Sakic.” While the critiques of Tavares focus on his one-dimensional play and less than stellar skating ability, Duchene now is portrayed as the “most complete” player in the draft….

My gut feeling is that the Islanders will pick Matt Duchene and worry about the fallout from the fans later.


Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: matt+duchene

More Spin

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

Today is Make it Seven Day in Hamilton. Yesterday, was send a letter to Gary Bettman Day. We’re not certain, at this time, what tomorrow may bring.

We do know this much: Every day seems to be Annoy the National Hockey League Day for Jim Balsillie.

It’s as if he can’t help himself. The harder he pushes, the farther away the NHL gets from him, and by extension, from southern Ontario.

He may not know this because he may not know the NHL people all that well: But I can tell you with almost certainty that they hate him. More and more with each passing day, they hate his publicity stunts. They hate his overt public relations campaigns. They hate the way he disregards whatever may be going on around the NHL—like last night’s award show, for example—and continues in his bull-in-a-china-shop kind of way, blinded by everything but his own ego, hell-bent to bring a seventh NHL team to Hamilton.


When all of this first came out, Balsillie wants to buy the Yotes, I was leaning towards saying, ok, fine with me, but all the marketing spins he has come out with has completely turned me off.  Not sure what he is trying to do, but it sure isn’t working for me.

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jim+balsillie

Could The Canucks Be Better Without The Sedin Twins?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,

...But the issue isn’t whether the Canucks will collapse if they fail to sign the Sedins. The issue is whether they will be better positioned to win the Stanley Cup if they don’t sign the twins. That, after all, is supposed to be the goal here and, to that end, things become pretty clear.

If the recent history of the NHL has taught us anything, it’s that any attempt to assemble core players through free agency is a loser’s game. This was true in the pre-cap world when the Detroits, New Jerseys and Colorados were largely home-grown enterprises. It’s certainly true in the salary-cap world, where it’s a given that free agency represents the most inefficient, and dangerous, method of team-building.

Teams might be able to fill one or two holes in their lineups by dipping into the free-agent pool.

But no one in their right mind would try to sign their best players that way.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: daniel+sedin, henrik+sedin

So Don’t Tell Anyone

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Most of us know some ot the NHL players participated in the PokerStars.net Charity Shootout on Wednesday in Las Vegas.

The winner was supposed to be kept a secret, since it will be shown on ESPN on a later date,  but our very own commish broke the news on his radio show yesterday that Scott Hartnell won the event.

I also found this story on the Hartnell win this morning….

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

How’s The Hate? Want Some More?

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

I’m not sure the Gore could handle it, but George Malik points us to a Pittsburgh Tribune-Review ditty that focuses on the joys of a Wings/Pens trifecta.

The loathing between these teams and their cities has only begun to boil, so, no, it cannot end now.


Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

How The Voting Turned Out

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The day after the NHL Awards are announced, emails start flowing in asking for a breakdown of the voting for each trophy.

Below you have your answers…

Continue Reading »

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

NHL Awards Announced

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

The NHL had their awards ceremony in Las Vegas tonight.  Here were the people I would have voted for to win the awards if I had a ballot.  Here were my comments when the award nominees were announced. 

The voting results can be found here for the awards and here for the all star teams.  Usually, the award results are well enough established that the addition of one further ballot changes little.  This year, if I had voted I would have caused two changes.  Mike Richards would have won the Selke Trophy instead of Pavel Datsyuk and Pekka Rinne would have been the third Calder nominee in place of Kris Versteeg.

Let’s run down the awards.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

My Highlight Of The Night

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Jean Beliveau receiving the NHL Lifetime Achievement Award.

I have been a strong believer the NHL needs to honor the great players of the past and involve these types of players in any way possible.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jean+beliveau

Russian Party In Las Vegas

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Barnes of the Edmonton Journal via the Montreal Gazette,

Alexander Ovechkin and Pavel Datsyuk led a Russian assault on the podium at the NHL Awards and will be leaving Las Vegas with armloads of hardware and winning smiles.

Ovechkin copped the Hart Trophy as the league’s most valuable player and the Lester B. Pearson as most outstanding player, in a vote by his peers, while Datsyuk waltzed off with the Selke Trophy as best defensive forward and the Lady Byng Trophy as the league’s most gentlemanly and sportsmanlike player.

“It’s pretty important when people and players give you this. I don’t want to stop. I want to be the best next year,” said Ovechkin, the Washington left-winger who easily outpolled countrymen Datsyuk and Evgeni Malkin. It was a repeat Hart win for Ovechkin and the fourth straight Lady Byng for Datsyuk and his second Selke. It was a big night worthy of celebration.


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

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