Kukla's Korner

Datsyuk Reportedly Signs With Awangard Omsk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from a poster at Red Wings Central, the same poster who has supplied numerous translations of Russian newspaper articles: He reports Datsyuk has signed with Avangard Omsk of the Russian League. No details have been announced but there is a possibility of an "out" clause. update 12:43pm, The Wings have laid out numerous scenarios for Datsyuk. Contracts anywhere from 1yr to 5yrs have been proposed. It is now up to Datsyuk to take it or leave it but it appears he is trying to gain as much leverage as possible. The Wings have no room to pay him anymore than what they are offering and it is time to move on. The next step in the give and take game is trying to sign a replacement for Datsyuk. It should be interesting to see how Datsyuk reacts when he receives word the Wings are about to sign his replacement. Holland has showed his hand, has Datsyuk done the same? update 12:56pm, Peter at Mlive found a link to the story of Datsyuk's signing. I tranlated it too and basically it says he has signed with Omsk but Dynamo has 10 days to match the offer. Article from Sovsport and translation: "advance guard" signed contract with tsentrforvardom by Pavel datsyuk. As reported RIA of "news" on Monday in the press- service of professional hockey leagues (PKHL), Omsk club officially presented the signed contract with the player, who now can be declared for the "advance guard". In this case the "hawks" were packed in the necessary periods. However, the capital "dynamo", whose colors Datsyuk protected in the past season, has the right during 10 days to propose to hockey player the agreement, analogous so that proposed the "advance guard", and to attempt to preserve rights to forvarda, they reported in the press- service PKHL. update 1:57pm, see the comments of this post to read another translation of this story.

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All Iggy

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Phil Coffey of NHL.com,

Through eight NHL season in Calgary, Jarome Iginla has been able to feel the love, becoming one of those special athletes who has a symbiotic relationship with the place he plays. The fans of the Calgary Flames have heaped plenty of affection on their team's captain and Iginla has been more than happy to return the embrace. It really is something to see. So, while Flames fans are delighted to have the NHL revving up for the 2005-06 season and delirious about the additions of Tony Amonte, Roman Hamrlik and Darren McCarty, they are positively beside themselves with the news that Iginla signed a three-year deal this summer.

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The Razzle Dazzle Lne

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Alameda Times-Star,

If you're a part of hockey history, a Stanley Cup champion, your name should be spelled correctly on the coveted Cup, especially when the NHL has had 61 years to make that correction. That's all Gerry Heffernan is asking, and it's not such a tall request even for a short hockey career, which happened to be his puck luck. Two years is all he had in the NHL, but he is satisfied. For two years and one Stanley Cup is better than 22 years and no Stanley Cup. However, did the NHL idiots have to make him suffer for his 1943-44 season in the sun with the Montreal Canadiens by botching his name on the Cup? He is Gerry Heffernan, not "Jerry Hefferman." Can't the league spell? "Does it bother me? Not really," Heffernan said a few days ago. "It was a means to an end. To get to the top of your sport, the apex, it's not only an honor but a privilege."

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Philly Fans Can’t Wait

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Philadelphia Business Journal,

After speaking to about 60 team sponsor representatives at a private luncheon last week, Philadelphia Flyers head coach Ken Hitchcock was asked if he is worried about any kind of fan backlash following the labor contract dispute that canceled last year's National Hockey League season. He isn't. "In hockey, you're either a hard-core fan or nothing," said Hitchcock, speaking outside the Wachovia Center's Victors Club. "There's no such thing as a casual hockey fan. ... We have a fanatical following, it's almost a spiritual kind of following." The loyalty of the Flyers' fans has shown itself at the box office, where the team has received more than 83,000 phone calls from people inquiring about season tickets.

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Prove It

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Tampa Tribune,

"We are going to crack down on all the clutching and grabbing that is slowing down our game. We have instructed the referees to call penalties on any type of obstruction infraction in order to showcase the skill of our game." That mantra has been repeated many times in the past five years of the National Hockey League. We've heard it so many times, in fact, that not a lot of people of put much credence into the statement when it was repeated again at the conclusion of the lockout. Not coaches. Not general managers. Not players. Not fans.

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Wings Closing In On Datsyuk Decision

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I happen to be in the Traverse city area this weekend and while in downtown T.C, I happened to run into a Wings management type. I introduced myself, told him about the blog and talked hockey a bit. Conversation turned to Datsyuk and Zetterberg and I was basically told Wings want a decision tomorrow from Datsyuk and then will direct their efforts into signing Zetterberg on Tuesday. Wings have made numerous offers to Datsyuk, with different lengths of contract, but the only stumbling point seems to be the dollar amount. Datsyuk is shooting for the moon, and feels he is worth more than the Wings think he is. Wings will not budge on the money part and the decision is in the hands of Pavel. They have not received any trade offers but of course will listen but they hold the cards. No RFA offers either, teams do not want to lose the draft choices on Datsyuk just yet, other players with more talent are or will be available next year, and besides, no other teams feel Datsyuk is worth what he is asking.

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NHLPA Morale Low

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from alan Hahn of Newsday,

During NHLPA members' heated five-hour conference call Wednesday involving the debate over Ted Saskin's promotion to executive director, many players were against not Saskin, but the process by which he was appointed. The NHLPA constitution says the executive committee can only nominate a person for the lead position and that it must go to a vote to approve it. The response from the executive committee, which includes the likes of Trevor Linden and Bob Boughner? "How can we be governed by a constitution that's 40 years old?" To which one infuriated player shot back, "I don't know, the U.S. seems to be doing all right." The players' union continues to crumble in the wake of the lockout, and morale is as low as it was back in the Alan Eagleson days. Many players are upset with how quickly Saskin was moved into Bob Goodenow's seat without a search or consideration of other candidates.

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Shooting An NHL Commercial

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Chilliwack Progress (B.C. newspaper),

While they didn't exactly arrive in droves, a steady stream of Chilliwack residents dropped by Prospera Centre Wednesday night to be a part of an upcoming NHL commercial shoot. Some were there for the paycheque, while others were looking to fill some idle time. Others still were excited just to be a part of something - anything - hockey related. Hopes were high for most that the commercial will feature real NHL stars, but Tony DiMarco, a talent director from Circle Productions, says it's unlikely any big name hockey players will be on set. "That's just a rumour. It would be cutting it pretty close to the beginning of the hockey season," he says of the Sept. 8 through 14 work schedule. "They are all focused on training, and the Chiefs are busy with their training for the team." What will be needed for the shoot are several six foot guys, ideally over the 200-lb. mark, to sit on the bench during shooting. No hockey skills necessary. "They just need to look like an NHLer," he quips. They were also looking to fill the stands, at least in part, with about 350 hockey fans.

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Wings Heading To Camp With New Faces

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Traverse City Record-Eagle,

The new Collective Bargaining Agreement is quickly changing the landscape in the National Hockey League. "In the past you felt there were six to eight teams that could win the Stanley Cup," Red Wings General Manager Ken Holland said. "There's probably 15 to 20 teams that can win it now. "It's going to be an exciting season." After a one-year absence, National Hockey League teams return to the ice this month. The Wings report to camp at Traverse City's Centre ICE next week. "I can't wait," Holland said. Prior to that, a five-team NHL prospects tournament will be held here, starting Tuesday. Teams will be operating under new rules and new budgets. A $39 million salary cap resulted in unprecedented player movement during the off-season.

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Crosby Taking Off

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

, There is the on-ice side of hockey, which 2005 No. 1 overall draft pick Sidney Crosby proved he had an exceptional handle on even as a 16-year-old. Then there is the business side of hockey, which for Crosby also started around the age of 16. Now, with Penguins training camp opening on Sept. 13, Crosby already has a broad appeal as unique as his talent. At the age of 18, Crosby has three major endorsement deals, including one that's made him the face of Reebok's new Rbk Hockey line. He has his own professionally managed Web site, www.crosby87.com, with a link to the Crosby e-store where fans can pre-order an autographed Penguins jersey (Crosby won't actually sign any Penguins merchandise until he makes the team) for close to $700. Agent Pat Brisson said the site averages 140,000 hits per day.

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