Kukla's Korner

New CBA Hurts Canucks

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Vancouver Sun,

The biggest challenge of the 45-year-old's business career is to provide value to Canucks fans, who spend the equivalent of a week's grocery budget for a pair of seats and expect much in return. They want players to work hard. They demand entertaining hockey. They expect the team to win and they want a Stanley Cup, which has eluded Vancouver since the Canucks joined the NHL in 1970 and Aquilini took on Imperial Parking soon after. And the fans aren't much interested what it might cost the Canucks' new co-owner to provide all this. They should be, because Aquilini insists the team faces far tougher economics under the NHL's new Collective Bargaining Agreement than it did under the old one. "The perception is, we're rolling in dough," Aquilini says. "It's actually the opposite. Financially, we're behind '03-04 because of the new CBA. It actually hurts us. It has made significant impact on us, but we're trying to cope."

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NHL ON TSN goes HD

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Broadcaster Magazine,

In its ongoing commitment to High Definition, TSN today announced an unprecedented initiative to produce and televise a record 27 of its 71 nationally televised NHL regular season games this year in High Definition on TSN HD, becoming the only Canadian broadcaster to air games in wide-screen HD format during the 2005-06 season. TSN's dedication to hockey in High Definition is strengthened by the fact that to-date, there has been only a handful of NHL games televised in HD by a Canadian network. TSN's NHL HD coverage gets underway on opening night (October 5) with a doubleheader, as two of the network's four scheduled games are available in High Definition.

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Thank You Martha

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Mercury News,

The NHL and Martha Burk, hurtling on separate paths toward sports irrelevance, on Wednesday unveiled a revolutionary plan in which they agree to share newspaper headlines. Sources hinted that a revenue-sharing plan could become part of the arrangement eventually, if either side has revenue to share. The heart of the deal is an NHL advertisement, scheduled to debut Saturday, that shows a woman in lingerie dressing a bare-chested hockey player. The woman appears in roughly four seconds of the 30-second spot. But that was enough to draw the ire of Burk, who made herself famous by trying to take the no-girls-allowed sign off Augusta National's treehouse and now plans to write a letter of protest to the NHL and NBC. ``I mean, is this great or what?'' NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. ``A week ago we're being grouped with arena football, Major League Soccer and the WNBA. Now we're mentioned alongside The Masters. The Masters! We couldn't buy publicity like that.

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NHL Carnival

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Kukla's Korner will be hosting the 10th Edition of the NHL Carnival this week. Since this will be the last Carnival before the opening of the NHL regular season, I am asking bloggers to thnik ahead. How will the NHL be viewed by die hard fans, band wagon jumping fans, the media, the non-believers and the average joe. Give me your take on the outlook for your team, the NHL and hockey in general. Will the 'My NHL' theme take off, will Iginla, Heatley, Lecavalier, Marleau, Datsyuk and Crosby become household names? Please submit your entries to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) by 10pm EDT, Thursday, September 29th. If you wish to stray off the requested topic, that is fine by me, but special attention will be paid to bloggers sticking to the format. Carnival #9 was hosted at Bolts Mag, and I must say, a job well done.

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Preds Goalie Pacing Himself

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Daily News Journal,

Tomas Vokoun is prepared to play 82 games — if not more — this season. Just don't expect him to be the Nashville Predators' goalie every time they take the ice. The combination of a regular-season schedule altered by a three-week Olympic break and the Predators' playoff aspirations has Vokoun thinking about how and when he will have time to rest. "I guess I'm going to play a lot, but there's a difference between playing a lot and playing too much," he said. "Hurting, getting worn out — it's a tough mental game. Once in a while you need a night off and you need to kind of step away from hockey. We have a great backup goaltender. Everyone has total confidence in (Chris Mason). So we'll see how it goes. It's a matter of how you feel and communicate with the coaches."

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blackhawks Like Speed Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Chicago Tribune,

Lost in the hand-wringing over the penalties called in exhibition games has been the impact of other changes the NHL is making this season to increase the flow and speed of play. While the zero-tolerance measures lurch along, the Blackhawks seem to approve of removing the red line, touch-up offsides, restrictions on where goalies can play the puck and barring line changes on icing. "It's great," winger Eric Daze said of allowing what formerly were two-line passes. "You have seen a lot of [scoring] chances. Especially on the power play, goalies are moving the puck and you go right back and almost have a breakaway or a two-on-one."

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Hasek Has Something To Prove

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Buffalo News

, Sometimes, there's no point in beating around the bush. You see Dominik Hasek, 40 years old, sweat pouring off him after a meaningless gameday skate in late September, and you get right to the question. "Why are you still doing it?" I blurted out Wednesday afternoon at HSBC Arena. "There's still something to prove," Hasek said. "There is always something to prove, especially at my age. I feel there is something I can prove to some other people, and to myself."

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Rob Ray Sues NHLPA & Receives Settlement

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Buffalo News,

Rob Ray, his back to the rink, craned his neck at the JumboTron before Wednesday night's preseason game between his former teams, the Buffalo Sabres and Ottawa Senators. He had heard his name mentioned during the replay of a 1993 Sabres-Senators game and turned around in time to see a young version of himself pulverize Darcy Loewen into the glass. "I was pretty good then," he cracked. Ray's playing days are done now - officially. The Sabres' all-time tough guy deposited a $70,000 check that settled his lawsuit with the NHL Players Association. He sued the union after it informed him in November he had been classified as retired even though he hadn't filed the required paperwork. The union's stance denied him the $5,000 and $10,000 monthly lockout stipends paid to other players.

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HDTV & Sports Go Together

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Cleveland Plain Dealer,

If you don't see the value in high-definition television because you don't watch movies or network dramas, you might be pleased to learn that programmers are gearing up for the fall and winter sports seasons with new HD offerings. The National Hockey League last week announced that 52 games will be shown in high definition on HDNet, a network found mostly on satellite systems. Coverage begins Wednesday with Wayne Gretzky's coaching debut as his Phoenix Coyotes meet the Vancouver Canucks. "No sport benefits as much from HDTV as hockey," HDNet president Mark Cuban said in a statement. That's pretty generous coming from Cuban, who owns the Dallas Mavericks in the National Basketball Association. The Outdoor Life Network, which will carry the NHL season in standard definition, is signing deals with some cable companies to carry NHL games in HD.
more..the article goes on to discuss basketball and football in HD.

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Stop The Diving

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Toronto Sun via Slam,

Maple Leafs coach Pat Quinn backs Ottawa Senators coach Bryan Murray's call for the National Hockey League to be more lenient about physical play in front of the goal. "You should still have the battles around the net," Quinn said. "Not the holding, nobody wants that. But you should be able to block a guy off. You are entitled to your area."

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