Kukla's Korner

Atlanta Advancing

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Phil Coffey of NHL.com,

The Atlanta Thrashers have the potential to be not only one of the most interesting teams in the NHL this season, but one of the most improved as well. It has been quite the summer for Thrashers GM Don Waddell, who jumped into the free-agent market and then swung a blockbuster trade. In that deal, Waddell acquired winger Marian Hossa and defenseman Greg de Vries from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for Dany Heatley. It was a good, old-fashioned blockbuster, a swap that had folks around the NHL going "Wow!"

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Stanly Cup On Tour To Raise Funds

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The Stanley Cup will tour East Coast Hockey League franchise cities to raise funds as part of the National Hockey League's ongoing effort to assist those affected by the Hurricane Katrina disaster. Details of the season-long tour, which will be coordinated with the ECHL to maximize fund-raising opportunities in such ECHL franchise cities as Biloxi, Mississippi (Mississippi Sea Wolves), still are being formalized. The NHL and NHL Players' Association also will be making significant monetary donations to the effort, complementing activities already undertaken by individual NHL franchises such as the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, who, in conjunction with the Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim, the American Red Cross and other organizations collected more than $400,000 for those affected.

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Habs Sign Theodore

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from TSN,

Montreal Canadiens General Manager Bob Gainey announced today the signing of goaltender José Théodore to a three-year contract. As per club policy, financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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Carolina Hurricanes To Host Katrina Relief Weekend

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Jim Rutherford, President and General Manager of the Carolina Hurricanes, announced today that the team will host a special “Katrina Relief Weekend” from Sept. 16-18 in Raleigh. The weekend will feature several events designed to help raise much-needed funds for the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund to benefit the victims of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and along the Gulf Coast.

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Pens Sign Odelein

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via TSN,

The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed free agent defenseman Lyle Odelein. Terms of the contract were not released. Odelein, 37, has appeared in 1,029 NHL games in 14 seasons with Montreal, New Jersey, Phoenix, Columbus, Chicago, Dallas and Florida, recording 251 points and 2,266 penalty minutes. Odelein played in all 82 games with Florida in 2003-04, recording 16 points (4+12) and 88 penalty minutes. Odelein has played in at least 68 games during each of the past nine seasons.

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IIHF President Hopes To Boost Asian Hockey

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from China View,

The 2005-2006 ice hockey Asian League, which includes a Scandinavian team, will boost the development of this sport in Aisa, International Ice Hockey President said here on Friday. Rene Fasel told a press conference here that AHL is accepting the Nordic Vikings from Sweden as a special participant in order to improve the level and popularity of the league. The Vikings was started in Beijing by a Swedish financial and event company Nordic Vikings Group. The cooperative program is supported by IIHF and Fasel extendedhis congratulations and hopes for the sport's progress in Asia. "The Vikings' coming would make the league more interesting andadd to its competitiveness. Also, it would facilitate this sport in Asia," said Fasel. "IIHF will support any project that would make our sport more popular."

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Atlanta Inks Dunham

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the AP,

The Atlanta Thrashers have signed unrestricted free agent goaltender Mike Dunham, according to Executive Vice President and General Manager Don Waddell. "In signing Mike, we have added a solid, veteran goalie with more than 300 games of NHL experience to our club," said Waddell. "This addition is a great complement to our goaltending corps, and gives us the talent and experience in net that is necessary to be successful in this league."
According to the NHLPA, Dunham signed for $750,000.

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New Era For Blues

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

The NHL's free-agent frenzy has crawled to a stop as teams get set to open training camp in two weeks and then drop the puck for real in 33 days. Only four transactions were reported Thursday, down from more than two dozen on the busiest August days. "It was active," Blues general manager Larry Pleau said. "There were lots of spots to fill, so you knew it would be active. Most teams are going to have a lot of different faces. For the fans, it will be real exciting." Blues fans may be among those excited about the return of hockey, but the enthusiasm has been curtailed by their team being one of the least active in the free-agent market since it opened Aug. 1.

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Fans, Players Looking Ahead

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Star-Telegram via Yahoo ,

Having just completed a 12-hour drive with five children from southern Mississippi to North Texas, Kristin Williams found a tiny bit of relief at the Dallas Stars' first event in more than a year. "I don't know if I have a house," said Williams, 31, who lives in Hurricane Katrina-ravaged Biloxi, Miss. She fled to Arlington to be with her sister-in-law. "We enjoy hockey. And it's good to be able to find anything for five kids to do right now." On Thursday at the American Airlines Center, more than 10,000 hockey fans returned to partake in what amounted to a meet-and-greet with the Stars. And for about four hours, the Stars did entertain a fan base that appears eager to move on, and forget the lockout-laden past.

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Rags May Make Offer To Kovalchuk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from 640 Toronto,

Interesting story coming out of New York, may see the Rangers be the first team to offer a contract to an RFA. Ilya Kovalchuk who is without a contract in Atlanta and is threatening to play in Russia this year, may get an offer from the blue shirts next week. The Rangers concern is that there isn't a lot of UFA's coming up in the next two years so why not take a shot at Kovalchuk now?

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