Kukla's Korner

Thrashers Still Have Flexibility

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

You may recall the ruling earlier this week that the Thrashers (and Atlanta Hawks) could not sign anyone for more than 1 year, well here is a follow up... from CBS Sportsline,

However, the ruling does not impact any negotiations already begun by either team, and since it came nearly a week after NHL free-agency began, it will allow the Thrashers to sign any free agent they have already spoken with. "One thing that was clear was that any player we initially started conversations with for contract negotiations, we can continue on with that," Atlanta general manager Don Waddell said. "Quite a few players fall in that category." Waddell said he wasn't concerned about having his options restricted in the short term since most of the team's players are already under contract. Atlanta has one player, Niko Kapanen, scheduled for arbitration, but even then, the two sides can settle on a multiyear deal because they have already talked contract, Waddell said.
more

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Not Good To Be Ordinary

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Philadelphia Inquirer via the Mercury News,

It's OK to be Ordinary. That is, if you're the Carolina Hurricanes and you've won the Stanley Cup. It's OK because all you had to do if you were general manager Jim Rutherford was re-sign your key players, such as Eric Staal and Erik Cole. It's not OK to be Ordinary if you're Bob Clarke. That's because his Flyers haven't won a Cup in three decades. Some people, including Clarke, are facing the prospect of having to choose between season tickets and disability insurance.
continued

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Theodore Demands Apology

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP via TSN,

Former Montreal Canadiens goalie Jose Theodore and his girlfriend have demanded a retraction from French television station TQS over a story the network aired reporting the couple had separated. Theodore and Stephanie Cloutier are also seeking an on-air apology, saying the June 20 report by Marie-Christine Proulx was "false and deceitful," their lawyer said in a news release.
continued

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Finding Tom Poti

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Is Tom Poti an Islander? Both the NHL and NHLPA websites list him as a NYI. The Islanders website, which releases news quickly, has nothing. You decide, and I have an email into the Islanders. Can I go 2 for 2 in the last 24 hours? update 3:32pm, via TSN,

The New York Islanders have signed veteran defenceman Tom Poti to a one-year contract. Last season with the Rangers, the 6-3, 210-pound Poti played 73 games and registered three goals and 20 assists for 23 points. Poti ranked first on the Rangers with 123 blocked shots and first among all team defencemen with 122 shots on goal. "Tom Poti is a perfect fit for us," said Islanders Vice President and general manager Neil Smith.

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Raising Awareness For Autism

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Russell Levine of NHL.com,

The NHL off-season, though achingly short for those players who go deep into the Stanley Cup Playoffs, is nevertheless a time when many of the League's players give willingly of their free time to benefit some great causes. The players -- Olie Kolzig of the Washington Capitals, Scott Mellanby of the Atlanta Thrashers and former NHL goaltender Byron Dafoe -- played host to fellow athletes from the worlds of hockey, baseball, basketball and football, as well as Hollywood celebrities and others from the autism community, in an effort to continue raising awareness of autism and to fund efforts to improve the lives of those dealing with autism today, and ultimately, to find a cure.
read on

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Shanny Good Bet To Return To Detroit

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ansar Khan, Wings beat writer for Mlive,

My opinion hasn’t changed from the start: I think he’s coming back, and I don’t think he ever seriously intended to leave, as long as the Red Wings told him they wanted him back and were willing to increase his salary. My guess is he’ll sign a two-year deal for slightly less than $4 million a season ($3.5?). Like Nicklas Lidstrom, I never thought Shanahan would leave over a few hundred thousand dollars. Just doesn’t make sense.
more My take on this is the same as Ansar's. It would take a huge difference in salary for Shanahan to consider leaving Detroit. Plus, the team would have to be considered a "player" for the Stanley Cup. Shanahan has made enough money and wants a shot at winning the Cup again. He has mentioned numerous times what a thrill it is to play for an original 6 team, just thinking about all of the playes who played before him is something he doesn't forget. The Canadiens, Rangers, Bruins and Leafs all fit into that scenario, but is there enough money being offered that would sway him from returning to Detroit? I don't think so.

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NYR Interested In Shanahan

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Boy, my eyes must be deceiving me. I went to the NY Post today and found nothing hockey related. After Lyle (Spector) commented in the previous post, I went to his site and lo and behold, Larry Brooks has learned the Rangers are interested in Shanahan.

Ten years after failing to ante up and acquire Brendan Shanahan from Hartford to play with Wayne Gretzky, the Rangers head into this weekend as one of three teams bidding for the 37-year-old free agent left winger, The Post has confirmed. Sources have told The Post that Shanahan has one-year offers of varying degrees from the Blueshirts and Canadiens in addition to one from the Red Wings...
continued (reg. req.)

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Open Thread

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

A very slow NHL news day, so this thread is for you. Feel free to leave a comment, rant, question, etc... Keep it hockey related! Also an update on the next few weeks. Many of you know I will be cutting back to re-charge my batteries. KK will also undergo some minor tweaks and changes. A hockey related forum will be added, membership (free) will be an option too. I have always stated 99.9% of the comments made on KK have been informative and done without the name calling many of us have experienced on other sites. I would like to think the same will hold true when the forum opens up. It is refreshing and true testament to you that we can talk hockey without all of the childish chatter.

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Poti Not In Rangers Plans

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Journal News,

Tom Poti will eventually sign somewhere. But the veteran defenseman, an unrestricted free agent and the Rangers' longest-tenured player, won't be coming back to the team. "He made it clear to us that he wanted to move on," Rangers assistant general manager Don Maloney said yesterday. "We wanted to explore whether we were a consideration but, for all considered, he needs to move on to somewhere else. So the answer is, no, he's not on our radar screen."
continued

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So True

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun had a one-on-one interview with Ottawa GM John Muckler. One answer from Muckler seems to repeating itself throughout many of the NHL teams...

SUN: Do you think you still have enough elite players that you're going to be a good team. MUCKLER: Yes, but the trick is how are you going to be able to keep these guys beyond this year? I would just like to see the message sent for the general public to understand what is happening: I don't think people understand that cap system dictates change and trades are going to be done in a different manner now. You are not going to see teams receive the compensation that you think they should receive. Sometimes you're not going to trade players because you want to trade players, it's because you have to trade players because you can't afford (their contract) and you have to remove that from your payroll. All those things are going to happen and at the same time you want to keep the best players you can.
read on for the rest of the intervew...

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