Kukla's Korner

The Best Value FA Signings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from TSN,

When the National Hockey League entered its new salary cap existence in 2005, free agent signings took on a heightened importance. With a salary cap in place, teams couldn't just throw good money after bad in an attempt to rectify personnel shortcomings. Thus, the value of pro scouting has to have increased around the NHL and the teams that make shrewd acquisitions -- productive players at cost-effective rates -- stand to reap the rewards.
see the top 10 signings based on value for the dollar...

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How “Easy” Is It To Get A Player

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Walking out of the Pengrowth Saddledome the other night, Vancouver Canucks' senior vice president and assistant general manager Steve Tambellini made as if he were Wal-Mart shopping. Pushing an imaginary shopping cart down an imaginary aisle, Tambellini was playfully mocking the upcoming frenzy that usually accompanies the NHL trading deadline. "Defencemen, on sale in Aisle 7," Tambellini called out. "Goaltenders, now featured in Aisle 4."
continued

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Flames Need A Scorer

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Calgary Sun,

Flames players and management should know one other thing: They're not going to advance far into the playoffs this spring if GM/head coach Darryl Sutter doesn't address his club's woeful offence before the March 9 trade deadline. According to some sources, Detroit's Robert Lang, San Jose's Patrick Marleau and Tampa Bay's Brad Richards are all available, but since they're all either facing restricted free agency or signed for another season, they won't come cheaply. The Flames are more likely to look at players a level below that trio. And that wouldn't be a bad thing. Toronto's Darcy Tucker could add scoring and act as an agitator, another element Calgary is lacking.
more

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More Blame On Bertuzzi

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Terry Frei of ESPN,

Wednesday will be the second anniversary of Bertuzzi's mugging of Colorado center Steve Moore. ...But the pertinent point now is that Bertuzzi's selection to the Olympics is indicative of a mind-set that helped diminish Canada's chances in Torino. It was a mockery of the Olympic ideal, and the fact that it gets mocked plenty is no excuse. It sent that inappropriate message to young players in a nation in which Hockey Canada's terrific ads promote the concept that it's only a game, opponents must be respected, and parents need not act like all games are Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals.
read on...and I wonder if Frei would be writing this if he wasn't based in Denver...

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The Best Of All Time

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sports Illustrated,

Since the NHL opened for business in 1917-18, many teams have clearly been in a class of their own during the regular season. Some did it with high-octane offense, others with a precision game plan, and others were at the top of their games at both ends of the rink. ...This list focuses strictly on teams that dominated the regular-season schedule. For sure, some great teams were excluded. But we think you'll agree that these elite performers are truly in a league of their own. (Cup winners are noted by an asterisk.) 1. 1976-77 Montreal Canadiens* (60-8-12, 132 points) read on for the other nine...
I am back by the way, took 8 stiches to the back of my head but other than a headache and a lower body injury, everything is fine!

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Nolan Not Coming Back

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Blogging from the emergency room... via TSN,

The Owen Nolan Sweepstakes are over almost before they began. The big winger has decided he won't try to come back this season to the NHL because his surgically-repaired knee isn't yet 100 per cent.
more

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Nice Fall

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

We received a nice layer of ice this morning in the Detroit area. I took a nice dive on the porch while getting the morning paper. Looks like stiches are in order, be back ASAP.

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Quinn Near The End & What To Do With McCabe

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Al Strachan of the Toronto Sun,

Pat Quinn is the defendant. The sentence is that he must go. And who was that prosecution witness who provided such damning evidence? None other than Quinn himself. If you listened to him after Tuesday night's loss to the Washington Capitals, you heard a coach admit his team no longer listens to him. And if that's the case, then the Maple Leafs must have a new man at the helm if they are to make the playoffs. It matters not that Quinn does his job better than most of his players do theirs. This is not the blame game here.
more from the Toronto Star,
The Maple Leafs have one week and three games to decide whether they will be a buyer or a seller at the March 9 trade deadline, and in that time they must decide what they are going to do with star defenceman Bryan McCabe. Sources say the Leafs started negotiating with McCabe and Tomas Kaberle earlier this season. The talks with Kaberle resulted in a four-year deal for the Czech defenceman just before the Olympic break. But the Leafs have yet to sign McCabe and there are growing indications McCabe and his agent, Jeff Solomon, are intent on testing the free agent market July 1.
read on

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Who Wants LeClair

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the Beaver County Times,

Forward John LeClair, who had a goal in Wednesday's 4-3 home loss to the Ottawa Senators, is one player who would welcome a trade to a team that had a chance to win the Stanley Cup. LeClair has eight points in his last five games and could interest a team looking for a veteran to help on the power play. Scouts from five teams - Columbus, Montreal, Los Angeles, Tampa Bay and the New York Rangers - watched Wednesday night's game at Mellon Arena.

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Pens Patrick Should Resign

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Reveiw,

Craig Patrick should do the right thing and resign as Penguins general manager the instant the season ends. This franchise desperately needs new blood. Patrick, in the final year of his contract, isn't solely to blame for all the losing the past four years. Remember, the Penguins' wisely opted to strip down and begin rebuilding in anticipation of an NHL work stoppage.
continued

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