Kukla's Korner

Not Afraid To Lead

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

Perhaps best of all, he'd welcome the C with open hands and the broadest of shoulders. ``It would be a big honor," Chara said. ``I would be proud to be the captain, especially in an organization like [the Bruins], an Original Six franchise. I am not afraid to lead, and there are many ways to do that -- with work ethic, dedication, and drive. I would try to be the very best captain."
read on

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A Look At Gaborik

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Pioneer Press, Over here,

Gaborik surrounds himself with friends and family while enjoying a lifestyle as one of his country's biggest celebrities. He draws satisfaction knowing his parents and brother are managing the arena he built and donated to the city, allowing more kids to pursue hockey dreams. And he is happily involved with a strong-minded woman who knows how to keep her famous boyfriend's feet on the ground. No one yet is rolling red carpet over the cobblestone streets so Trencin's most celebrated son can parade Lord Stanley's trophy through this historic 15th-century city for the first time. But Gaborik, 24 and entering his sixth NHL season, has the confidence to dream big. He can envision a 50-goal season and a homecoming party unlike anything Trencin has thrown. And it gives him chills.
more

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Bruins Need A Nucleus

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Nashua Telegraph,

Park said defenseman Zdeno Chara, signed as a free agent this summer, will help make up for some of the size lost by Thornton, without providing the points. Meanwhile, Park is impressed with new Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli. “I’ve met him, I’ve talked with him,” he said. “He’s a Harvard guy, he’s from Canada, you’ve got to like those two combinations right away. He’s got a big job ahead of him. Time will tell.” The Bruins, who start training camp in a couple of weeks, need one thing above all, Park said. “The problem they have is they have to establish a nucleus,” Park said. “They’ve signed a lot of good players, but they have yet to form a nucleus. So it’s going to be very key for them to start the season well.”
more

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Dave King Talks Compensation

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from George Johnson of the National Post,

"That day at customs, as everyone else was running around trying to find him, I just sat on the bus. I knew it wasn't a case of his being unable to find his boarding pass. I knew he was gone.'' The Russians are right to oppose the current IIHF-NHL agreement that will net their federation a paltry $200,000 for such a unique talent as Malkin. "And that figure,'' King reminds you, "is split between all the teams here. Which means $10,000 to Metallurg Magnitogorsk. A pittance, when you consider the time and money spent developing him.'' King says the ramifications of young superstars leaving goes far beyond any fee paid out.... "Teams are trying to generate sponsorship, there's an effort being made to bring in sponsors to televise games on TV. When the star players keep leaving, that makes selling yourself awfully tough.''
read on (reg. may be req.)

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Over The Boards

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the Detroit Free Press,

The Wings have 11 forwards under NHL contracts, and Holland doesn't anticipate signing another unless Anson Carter or J.P. Dumont -- unrestricted free-agent forwards noted for their offense -- drop their demands.
Robert Tychkowski in the Edmonton Sun,
Memo to the Russian Ice Hockey Federation: Stop crying like you're the only teams in the world whose star, players can walk out of their contracts by simply giving two weeks notice. Chris Pronger did it in Edmonton long before Evgeni Malkin ever thought of it.
Shawn P. Roarke at NHL.com,
A few minutes later, I followed Yashin's path back out into the blinding sun, leaving the unique sights and sounds of the hockey rink behind, but not forgotten. A similar -- although far less photogenic -- smile was plastered to my face. For me, hockey season has begun. Not even the brutal rush-hour traffic on the Long Island Expressway, the Van Wyck Expressway, the Belt Parkway and the slog across Staten Island to the Garden State Parkway could dampen that fact.
more

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Luongo Still Bitter

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Miami Herald,

Luongo still feels bitter toward the Panthers, saying they made him out to ''be the bad guy'' during the past negotiating period. Florida had been trying to get Luongo to sign a long-term contract, although Luongo's agent publicly said his client only wanted a one-year deal. With Luongo facing unrestricted free agency after this coming season, the Panthers didn't want to go into another season with uncertainty and rumors swirling around their franchise goalie. On the day of the trade, however, Luongo said he told the Panthers he would sign a four-year deal with the team. According to Luongo, he wanted $1 million more over the course of the contract than was offered.
read on

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Sens Interested In Axelsson

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

While Senators GM John Muckler has most of his roster in place as the Sept. 14 start of camp draws closer, sources say it's anything but completely set and he and could be making a pitch for Boston Bruins left winger P.J. Axelsson. A former teammate of Daniel Alfredsson with Frolunda during the lockout, Axelsson also played on a line with the Senators captain when Sweden won Olympic gold in Turin last February. Still, it's doubtful the Bruins will trade Axelsson -- who recently signed a three-year, $1.85 million (all figures US) deal with Boston this summer -- because he has played a big role with the club.
more

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Malkin Intends To Sign In Early September

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Darren Drager at TSN,

Evgeni Malkin has spent the past week in Los Angeles preparing for his first NHL training camp. I'm told Malkin expects to sign with the Pittsburgh Penguins in early September, following the Labour Day long weekend, and fully intends on being on the ice when the Penguins open rookie camp on September 7th. At least that's the plan Malkin, the Penguins and the NHL is following.
continued

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Tanabe Lunches In Carolina

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Triangle Business Journal,

Is former Carolina Hurricanes defenseman David Tanabe returning to the team? Tanabe, who recently became an unrestricted free agent when the Boston Bruins exercised their "walk-away" option, was seen having lunch at Restaurant Savannah with Hurricanes General Manager Jim Rutherford and Coach Peter Laviolette on Friday. Tanabe was awarded $1.275 million, one-year contract by an arbitrator on Aug. 3. The collective bargaining agreement made it mandatory for the Bruins to sign Tanabe at that amount within 48 hours or set him free.
continued

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What Would Friday Be Like…

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

...without hearing from Brett Hull! From the Dallas Stars,

What can the league do to try and make the game more marketable on television? They have to market the personalities. They need to get some people on television that will say something and give you a direct point of view from someone who really knows the game. We need a little more "hoop-la". It's not always the game. It's what's around the game these days that will help.
more Q & A with Brett...

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