Kukla's Korner

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Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sports Illustrated,

Any time something more distasteful than usual goes down, some fans walk away for good, but there are plenty more in the pipeline. For the rest of us, it's like having a nasty spat with a loved one. You eventually kiss and make up. There will always be cycles in every sport where attendance falls and franchises struggle. And I wouldn't advise anyone to start a major league of any kind unless they're keen on flushing bales of greenbacks and watching it go the way of the XFL and WUSA, but the major established sports are suicide-proof. The NHL's TV ratings are still under the dumpster, but the league will be just ducky as long as it nurtures its considerable niche and doesn't entertain any delusions of grandeur. So I've learned my lesson. The next time millionaires and billionaires start gouging eyes over a roll of quarters, or a noxious scandal consumes a sport, I'm just going to kick back and crack my knuckles until it all blows over and we get back to business as usual.
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Jagr And Ranger Update

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Sam Rosen was just on Leafs Lunch, said Jagr met with press today and mentioned it will take a miracle for him to play. Jagr said even if he can play a little, he will. Rosen felt Kasparaitis has a better chance to play tomorrow than Jagr and Renney is leaning towards Lundqvist in goal.

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No Suspension For Gauthier

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via TSN,

The National Hockey League will not be suspending Flyers defenceman Denis Gauthier for his hit from behind on Buffalo Sabres forward Thomas Vanek in the second period of Philadelphia's 8-2 loss to Buffalo on Monday.

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StrangleHold About To Be Applied

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Edmonton Oilers,

Despite outplaying the Oilers by a wide margin in Game 1 on Friday, the Red Wings got through by the skin of their teeth with a 3-2 double-overtime win.... Now the scene shifts to Rexall Place where, with a pair of home wins, the Oilers could take a stranglehold on the series.
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A Profit Ahead

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Helene Elliott of the LA Times,

Higher television revenue, booming attendance and "business fundamentals" related to a new labor deal will boost an estimated 22 of the NHL's 30 clubs to break-even or profitable status this season, Commissioner Gary Bettman said Monday, signs that the league is recovering from the labor dispute that wiped out the 2004-05 season. Final numbers will be compiled after the playoffs, which generate significant amounts of revenue. A league-commissioned financial review issued in February 2004 had said that 19 teams lost a total of $342 million in the 2002-03 season and that 11 teams made money, leaving cumulative losses at $272 million.
more (reg. req.)

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Black Ice

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Black Voices,

George and Darril Fosty planned a big splash with their new book, 'Black Ice: The Lost History of the Colored Hockey League of the Maritimes, 1865-1925.' The debut was to coincide with the start of the National Hockey League's 2004-2005 season. But the NHL drained the Fostys' pool when it shut down for the entire season as players and owners fought over salary cap, free agency and other issues. Now, the NHL is back, the playoffs have started, and hockey excitement is in the air. And "Black Ice" is rippling the waters of the hockey world with controversial claims that an all-black 19th Century Canadian league pioneered the style of play that dominates the NHL today.
continued image photo via Black Ice Book

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High Definition Update- First Round on OLN-HD

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

INHD has added a NHL area to their website. The only HD game listed is Rangers/Devils on April 30th. OLN lists two HD games before that date, April 26th Rangers/Devils and April 28th Flyers/Sabres. Does that mean INHD will not telecast those two games, or will they show up on INHD2 or maybe another channel? Again, questions, but no answers from OLN!

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Cuban Interested In Penguins

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,

Although there is no indication Dallas billionaire Mark Cuban will be buying his hometown Pirates anytime soon, he could be coming to a new arena near you as a limited partner in the Penguins' new ownership group. "I have told several people who have contacted me that, although I wouldn't be the lead, or largest investor, I would kick in some money if it would help," Cuban wrote in an e-mail interview.
continued

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Playoff Attendance

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The Predators' modest streak of four straight home playoff sellouts came to an end on Sunday, when a crowd of 16,707 — about 400 short of capacity at the Gaylord Entertainment Center — watched Nashville fall 3-0 to the Sharks.- The Tennessean I noticed a few empty seats at the Joe too, for both games. It appears the NHL has yet to win back all of the fans.

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Reviewing Last Night

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

A nice review of the action from last night... from the Hockey News,

- One thing is certain – when they decide who the MVP of the Avs-Stars series is, it won’t be a goalie. - We used to think the concept of “Ice Girl” cheerleaders at an NHL game was a lowbrow gimmick. Then we got a look at one of Carolina’s girls. - There must be something that happens to goaltenders when they pull a Flyers jersey on. From Ron Hextall to Robert Esche, the Orange & Black’s backstoppers have earned a reputation for being, shall we say, rather testy.
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