Kukla's Korner

Devils Still In A Bind

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the NY Post,

When injury or ineptitude strikes, Lamoriello will have to make a move, and will be tipping the cap again. Lamoriello will be looking for some flexibility soon, and the way to that is by trading a high-paid player. Unlike other teams, however, the Devils have no overpaid slugs, so subtraction would be costly. The first place to look would seem to be Scott Gomez, who won a $5 million deal in arbitration from Lamoriello, and can turn unrestricted next summer. It will be a surprise if he re-signs with the team and goes to Newark, and that uncertainty, combined with his salary, makes him seem the most likely to be dealt.
read on

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Brown Leans On Sharks Family

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the San Francisco Chronicle,

Curtis Brown went through a season last year that was terrible on the ice and tragic off of it. Everything began with such promise. Signed to a big-money, multiyear deal by the Blackhawks before the NHL lockout, Brown was eager to impress as his wife and their three young children prepared for a new life in Chicago. Then, during training camp, something awful happened. Brown and his wife, Ami, put their 4-month-old daughter, Aubri, in her crib to sleep. She never awoke, a victim of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.
continued

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Ottawa Dealing With Issues

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

The Senators have some issues, no doubt about it: Top scorers such as Dany Heatley, Jason Spezza, Daniel Alfredsson, Peter Schaefer, Mike Fisher and Patrick Eaves aren’t putting the puck in the net on a consistent basis. Defencemen Wade Redden, Chris Phillips, Anton Volchenkov, Tom Preissing, Andrej Meszaros and Christoph Schubert are making mistakes that are turning into goals. It would also help if goaltender Martin Gerber, who signed a three-year, $11-million contract in the off season, was more consistent and came up with a big save or two ... quick.
more

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Canadian Holiday

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Happy Thanksgiving to all of the Canadian KK members and guests. Is it true the reason the 2nd Monday of October was chosen to celebrate this holiday is that it once coincided with the opening of the NHL season?

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Fighting Canes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the News & Observer,

Kevyn Adams suffered a cut over his left eye in a fight with teammate Bret Hedican midway through an hour-long skating session as the tension of a winless season overflowed on the RecZone ice. On what had been a scheduled off day, the Hurricanes went through an unscheduled rough day as Hurricanes coach Peter Laviolette attempted to take corrective action after only three games to prevent things from getting worse in the next 79. "We have to start playing the game the right way," Laviolette said. "The biggest thing that I can take from exhibition season and the first three games of the year is that we're not paying a price to be successful. If we're not going to do it in games, we have to do it in practice."
read on

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KK- A Mention In Newsweek

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Thanks to Nick Summers for mentioning Kukla's Korner in the current online edition of Newsweek.

As traditional media outlets devote less and less coverage to the NHL, the hockey blogosphere gets bigger every day. Fans write their own analysis, cut their own highlight reels—and sometimes have more influence than their professional counterparts.
read on...other blogs mentioned too... Also a more in-depth look at hockey bloggers from Newsweek,
The league, still dwarfed by the NFL, NBA and Major League Baseball, is focusing on a smaller base of more-intense fans. Officials cite statistics that say hockey followers are the most tech savvy and most likely to consume content via new platforms like wireless devices, as compared with fans of other sports. "Our demographic is younger, and that's what they want," says Doug Perlman, the NHL's head of new media. "We went as viral as possible during our relaunch."
more

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Best Buy No Longer NHL Sponsor

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sports Business Journal via the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal,

Consumer electronics retailer Best Buy Co. Inc. is out after spending about three years as an NHL sponsor. Without Best Buy as a balloting sponsor, it's unlikely the league will have a retail distribution point for all-star balloting, which normally begins in early November. That means the NHL will likely resort to in-arena, online and cell-phone voting, with new sponsor Verizon Wireless getting a piece of that action.

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Belfour Looking For Answers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Palm Beach Post,

Although Saturday night's meltdown was a team effort, a large share of the blame had to fall to Belfour, who set the stage for the collapse when he gave up a pair of soft first-period goals. He was pulled early in the second after giving up four goals on nine shots. A team source said last week that the plan was to start Belfour tonight against the Leafs, for whom he played the past three seasons, but that may no longer be the case. "I don't think it gets any easier as you get older," he said Saturday before declining to address the media after Sunday's hourlong workout at Ricoh Coliseum. "You're still angry and disappointed. (You) just try to learn from it, try to take something from it." If things don't improve, there's a chance Belfour could reach the conclusion that former All-Stars such as Brett Hull and Ron Francis reached just about this time last year: that he just doesn't have it anymore.
read on

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Pittsburgh City Officials Can Control Pens Destiny

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,

Isle of Capri is the best plan for Balsillie and the Penguins. The money all comes from the licensee. But there is more than one way for things to work, and it's up to local politicians to ensure that. What the sale of the team really means is that the owner no longer has any sentimental ties to Pittsburgh. Balsillie didn't become a billionaire businessman by being a bleeding heart. If he doens't get his building, make no mistake, unlike Mario Lemieux -- who was left waiting hat in hand well beyond his promised deadline -- Balsillie will leave town. The ball has been dropped on this issue too many times. Somebody needs to pick it up and run with it before Balsillie does the same thing with the hockey team.
more

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Wings Back Tigers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the blog of Shawn P. Roarke at NHL.com,

Babcock said Saturday morning that he had put a call out to Jim Leyland, the Tiger manager. Babcock has never met the larger-than-life Tiger skipper, but wanted to wish him well. "No, I've never met (Leyland), I just left him a message," Babcock said. "I called him. He's done a heckuva job there. (Tigers GM) Dave Dombroski, too. Mr Ilitch has gotta be proud as hell." The Red Wings flew home after Saturday's game and knew they would find a mob scene downtown as the city eagerly embraces the renaissance of the Tigers. To a man, they were looking forward to the still-rollicking celebrations in the city Saturday night, as well as the tense games to come as the postseason drags deeper into October in Detroit -- a most unlikely scenario at the start of this season. For the Red Wings, like the rest of the city, will be happy to suffer Tigers fever for another three weeks.
more

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