Kukla's Korner

More Of The Same Schedule Next Year

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,

Bettman said there's little chance of any significant policy changes this summer. He says the top two complaints he hears from fans, especially in Western Canada, revolves around bumping the number of shootout players from three to five and a schedule that sees Eastern clubs here every three years. "If we decide we want more inter-conference play, then we have to sacrifice the rivalries. It's a balancing act. We'll probably do it again next season and then we'll take a deep breath, have a talk with our fans and see where we go from there.
read on

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The Race For The Calder

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Globe and Mail,

The race is far from over and anything can happen. Mr. Crosby has rallied, having put up five points in his past two games. He is on pace to put up 94 points, the highest tally by an 18-year-old in NHL history. Mr. Crosby entered the season as the NHL's new darling and odds-on favourite to win the Calder Trophy. More recently, however, Mr. Ovechkin has been seen as a lock, not only because he leads in points but also because he has scored the most memorable goal of the season.
more

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The International NHL

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,

The Swedish Red Wings, the Czech Rangers and the Finnish Stars aren't NHL franchises, and yet they are clearly visible in the league standings. All three teams lead their division, suggesting an advantage to the groupings.
read on

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Decisions For The NHLPA

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bob McKenzie of TSN,

There are two simmering issues that involve the NHL Players' Association and it's going to be interesting to see whether either of them boil over in the near future. The first concerns the leadership of NHLPA executive director Ted Saskin.... The second issue will come to the fore on Wednesday when a conference call with Saskin and NHLPA player reps will go a long way towards determining what the salary cap will be next season in the NHL.
more

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Mainstream Media Coverage

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Abel to Yzerman once again drives the point home how bad the Detroit media is when it comes to covering the Wings. I must agree and have expressed my thoughts in the past. Today, Detroit area sports radio stations are consumed with Detroit Lions talk. Who did they get, why didn't they get this guy, etc. All pathetic talk for a terrible team. The Wings on the other hand have not even been mentioned today, no update on the injury to Samuelsson, not a word on how practice went, nothing. With a team that is playing above expectations this year, the mainstream media in Detroit should be focusing on the Wings and the Pistons, but then again they are much better at reporting on the negative like the Lions and Tigers, which of course creates the controversy they are looking for. A2Y also points out what Tom Benjamin thinks about the NY media coverage of hockey, which in comparison makes the Detroit media look like awarding winning journalists.

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Integrity Of The Game Still Solid

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP via Slam,

Despite the NHL's ongoing investigation into an alleged gambling ring, commissioner Gary Bettman says the affair has not damaged the league's reputation. "What's becoming increasingly clear - and it was from the outset - is that this had nothing to do with hockey," Bettman said Tuesday. "It has nothing to do with the integrity of our game."
read on update 6:52pm, from Eric Dutaschek of the Globe and Mail,
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman was in Calgary Thursday to address a Chamber of Conference luncheon and then speak at a dinner honouring Harley Hotchkiss, the long-time Calgary Flames' owner and chairman of the NHL's board of governors. In a meeting with Duhatschek and others, Bettman addressed some of the league's more pressing concerns. Following is an edited transcript of his talk:
read on...the best question goes something like this, "Please explain it in laymen's terms" & for Pens fans, Bettman says the clock runs until December or January...

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Berard Not Returning This Year

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via TSN,

Columbus Blue Jackets' defenceman Bryan Berard will miss the rest of the season due to a back injury, team president and general manager Doug MacLean said Monday night. Doctors will decide if surgery is necessary.

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Forget March Madness

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from John Buccigross of ESPN,

It's Bracket Week in the United States. And while the Super Bowl might be the biggest sporting event here, the NCAA Tournament is unique with the interactive quality of the brackets. What about the opening round of the NHL tournament? We are still 20 games away from the end of the long regular season, but I'm going to take a stab at how the initial bracket might look with the possible opening-round games.
more

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Team USA Names Holmgren GM

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Yahoo,

USA Hockey named Paul Holmgren as general manager of the men's national team that will play at the 2006 International Ice Hockey Federation World Championship in Riga, Latvia from May 5-21. Holmgren had served as an assistant to general manager Don Waddell of the Atlanta Thrashers on the United States team that failed to win a medal at the Torino Olympics.

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AO In Action

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Paul Kedrosky blogs about money, venture capital, etc. but AO blew his socks off. Nice video but I am not sure if I have linked to it before or have just watched it myself. The highlight reel for Ovechkin just keeps on growing. image Thanks to a KK reader for the tip...

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