Kukla's Korner

Bravo Stan

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Stan Fischler has done it. He wrote an article without mentioning Goodenow. Congrats Stan and now read all of the vignettes from The Maven, including a bit on a fan favorite: from MSG Network,

One of Vancouver's most popular skaters, Harold Snepsts-- the anti-hero of the 1982 Canucks-Islanders Cup Finals-- is back with his favorite club. Snepsts leaves Central Scouting to scout for Vancouver. For those too young to remember, Snepsts became infamous during Game One of the ‘82 Finals. The Isles found themselves down a goal in the third. Mike Bossy gave the Islanders their fifth tally of the night and everyone at the Coliseum expected an overtime. With seconds ticking down, however, Snepsts fired the puck right at Bossy, who banked a shot off the post and into the twine. Game One belonged to the home team.

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Coming Back to Earth

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Darren Eliot of Sports Illustrated,

If you're looking for confirmation of the changing landscape in the NHL, then peruse the team Web sites, especially those of the previous big spenders. Transactions that would have historically served as afterthought footnotes have now become featured news, a signal that the big boys are coming back to the pack -- at least from a payroll standpoint. Take a trip to Hockeytown. The Red Wings, known for spending freely for household names, offer these news items: Delmore adds depth to blueline Williams Accepts Qualifying Offer Kronwall joins Red Wings blueline 2003 pick Howard signs with Red Wings Hardly the sizzle we've seen in the past from owner Mike Ilitch.

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Touching All The Bases

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

John Buccigross of ESPN touches on numerous subjects today; including Cammi Granato, The Hossa-Heatley trade and the NHL OLN deal. Buccigross mentions the favorite thing he does at ESPN is write his column about the NHL and I for one think he should follow his heart and go to OLN if he has the chance. You can tell he has a passion for the game!

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Slow Day in the Hockey World

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Many of us are still anticipating some signings and I imagine a few trades will soon take place but will any of this happen before camps open up in mid-September? It may be a team advantage to wait as long as possible to pull the trigger on trades. I am heading out to dinner and then will be catching the Detroit Lions in action at Ford Field tonight. I will update if any significant news happens.

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New Rules Explained

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I saw this a few days ago and was just reminded about if after receiving an email from a reader. The NHL and EA Sports have teamed up to explain the new rules changes that will be adpoted this season. To view these movies Quicktime is required.

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Off Topic- A Lot Of People Need Your Help

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Hurricane Katrina has hit the Gulf States very hard. Homes, like yours and mine, are completely under water and many others will be left homeless for months. If it all possible, I am asking you to make a donation to the Red Cross. They will accept a minimum donation of $5 by credit card and every little bit will help. This tragedy could not be avoided, it is an act of nature and these people need help. I am sure your donation will be much appreciated. update 1:15pm, I noticed through my stats tracker that about 40 people have clicked on the Red Cross link. If 20 of those people made a donation of at least $5, that means at the minimum a $100 went to the Red Cross that they did not have before. Thank you!!!

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Theodore Asking for $22.5 Million Over 4 Years

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from RDS (translated),

Theodore would like to obtain a four years agreement evaluated to 22,5 million, but it should be believed that Gainey and the Canadian one is not ready to be compromised for such a sum, or for a contract of so long duration.

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Nashville Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Tennessean,

The Detroit Red Wings' signing of defenseman Andreas Lilja last week came as a surprise to the Predators. Nashville had Lilja under contract for the 2004-05 season and could have retained his rights by making him a qualifying offer. But when Lilja told Trotz he planned to remain in Sweden this season, Nashville allowed him to become an unrestricted free agent. "I think we would have had some interest in him,'' Poile said, "but he said he wasn't going to be coming back to the NHL at all this season.''
From the same story and it just doesn't sit right with me.
Poile said he believes that when the Predators eventually sign forward Adam Hall — the last unsigned player on the roster — the team's payroll will sit right around $28 million. Owner Craig Leipold has said the Predators want to remain under $28.6 million in order to receive the most revenue-sharing possible at season's end. But Nashville would like to have some flexibility under that figure for potential roster changes later. "We'll just have to deal with that at that point,'' Poile said. "We'll see how competitive we are, how injuries affect us and so on. But for now, that's our budget.''
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Talking OLN

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

A couple of stories today. Fist we have Larry Brooks from the NY Post giving Cablevision viewers some good news.

Despite repeated OLN claims to the contrary, the NHL's new cable network partner does not have the contractual right to black out games carried by Cablevision on a digital subscription tier, unimpeachable sources have told The Post. As such, Ranger fans with Cablevision will be able to watch their team's Oct. 5 season-opener in Philadelphia that will be telecast exclusively over OLN. They'll also be able to see every regular-season and playoff game carried on an exclusive basis by the national cable network. According to sources with access to the contract between OLN and the NHL, the specific language granting the right to black out games that do not appear on basic extended cable applies only "on a going-forward basis." This is terminology in the cable business legally understood to mean any future agreements that might be struck between OLN and new cable system carriers.
more (reg. req.) and an alternative link... Then we have an article on how important the NHL is to OLN.
With hockey returning this fall after the 2004-05 season was canceled due to a labor squabble, there were legitimate questions about the value of the sport on TV. Disney/ABC's ESPN crunched the numbers and projected the ad and subscriber revenue and declined to exercise its option to match the OLN offer. If it were just about ad revenue and current sub fees, the critics would be right. However, the hockey deal is about a lot more than that. It will drive distribution of OLN from its current sub count of about 65 million to around 80 million over the next couple of years and allow OLN to significantly raise the fee paid by cable operators, which is currently around 12 cents per subscriber. ESPN, which has rights in other major sports, gets a reported $2.60 per sub, so there is a lot of upside potential. "It's a viewership play. It's a brand play. It's a distribution play," said Gavin Harvey, president of OLN. "There's so much the NHL brings to us. It all comes down to the value proposition." By "value proposition" he means the benefit that will be perceived by consumers, advertisers, the media and cable system operators. "Hockey is a tremendous crown jewel acquisition for us," Mr. Harvey added. "It is going to help our network in many ways. It's one of those transformative events."
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Impact Of The Shootout

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Al Strachan of the Toronto Sun,

Who knows what to expect when the premier NHL snipers are turned loose in shootouts? In the past, goalies have tended to do well on penalty shots, but those occur only rarely. What will happen when a goalie faces a shootout every three or four games? For starters, the rate of success will increase. Most NHL goalies are creatures of habit. They approach penalty shots in a specific way, and in the past nobody bothered studying their tendencies. The circumstance simply was too unusual.

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