Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Kim Severson of the New York Times,
Although hockey players enjoy a reputation as rowdy partiers at many high schools, the sport often keeps children here on the straight and narrow, much the way football and basketball do in other places. When Dan Johnston sold raffle tickets for his son’s team, his sales slogan was, “Help keep the kids on the ice and off the streets.”
But hockey can also be a roiling pressure cooker, full of big expectations and even bigger disappointments, especially across south-central Alaska where the sport is highly competitive and many parents harbor hopes that their children might get a college scholarship and maybe even make it to the National Hockey League.
from the Buffalo News,
Sabres.com, which will be linked to the NHL Web site, NHL.com, also will have a feature that enables fans to call up every goal scored in every Sabres game and eventually every player shift or hit.
The online expansion could be bad news for local TV sports departments, which generally show the goals in each game. Viewers with a high speed internet connection won’t have to wait for the sports reports to see the goals.
In addition, the Sabres plan to put morning skates and interviews with coach Lindy Ruff online on game days. It also will introduce the team’s new jersey Sept. 20 online when it carries the Puck Drop festivities surrounding the first day of training camp.
from Steve Zipay of Newsday,
After one season on Broadway, Gomez is settled. “Last year, I didn’t have my apartment ready; it was New York and all,” he said. “Now you know what to expect, how the fans are going to react. I’m not the new guy anymore.”
Just one with more responsibility.
“It’s a big year for a lot of us,” he said. “Talking to Chris and the guys all summer, the pressure’s on . . . The way we finished [losing in the second round of the playoffs] is still there, so it’s a big challenge. We’ve got to step up. We’ve got to be at our best.”
Retired hockey player Eric Lindros is among the world’s top 10 most generous celebrities.
Lindros made No. 9 on the list, which is compiled annually by The Giving Back Fund, after contributing $5 million to the London Health Sciences Centre, a London, Ont.-based hospital where he was treated.
“The bottom line is there’s only one National Hockey League,” Gretzky said. “When I retired I got an offer to go play in Switzerland and it was a crazy amount of money. I remember thinking, ‘You know what, it’s all fun and that’s great but there’s only one National Hockey League.’
“And if you can’t play with the best and against the best it’s just not the same.”
-Wayne Gretzky… more from Wayne from the CP via the Sporting News.
The Chicago Blackhawks today announced the team has acquired a second round draft choice in the 2010 National Hockey League Entry Draft from the Montreal Canadiens (via the Toronto Maple Leafs) in exchange for center Robert Lang.
“Robert is a quality guy and we appreciate that he gave us everything that he had but this move gives one of our great young players an opportunity to step up,” Blackhawks General Manager Dale Tallon said. “We are excited about adding a second round draft pick in 2010 as we continue with our philosophy of building from within.”
Update 6:05pm ET (alanah): From the Habs—
Canadiens General Manager Bob Gainey announced today the acquisition of forward Robert Lang from the Chicago Blackhawks, in return for a second-round selection in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft (acquired from Toronto along with Greg Pateryn, in return for Mikhaïl Grabovski, July 3, 2008).
The Canadiens also re-signed Patrice Brisebois today for one more year.
from Ray Slover of the Sporting News,
Let’s admit this much: An NHL presence in Europe makes sense, if only to fend off the Continental Hockey League (KHL). We don’t need to see KHL czar Alexander Medvedev pounding a shoe at an IIHF conference to know there’s a cold war on between the old boys of the western world and the mother Russians.
But the last thing the NHL needs to do is pull its attention away from its own nest. At the risk of sounding protectionist and isolationist—but yes, I am a bit ist about this—Gary Bettman’s crew must take care of its own before it goes off on some overseas adventure.
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Radulov – caught in the middle of a fight that he couldn’t have anticipated and said to be weighing heavily on him – has, according to sources with knowledge of the situation, hinted that he would like to return to the NHL. That came to light in an interview between Paul Kelly, the NHLPA executive director, and Toronto radio personality Bill Watters on Thursday. What hasn’t been reported yet is Radulov’s preferred timetable – not necessarily now, but by the start of next season. That’s partly because the regular season is under way in the KHL; Radulov has already received substantial bonus monies up front and feels an obligation to play it out in Ufa, for this year anyway.
Ideally, he would like to negotiate some sort of settlement between the Predators and Ufa in the interim that would permit him to do just that - play a year in Russia and then return to the NHL for the start of the 2009-10.
“I think all your viewers know that hockey is the greatest game in the whole wide world. It’s actually not a game. It’s a religion. So I think you can understand it’s a religious obligation to be involved in the game. It’s fun, it’s a passion. I play it regularly. I played it Friday night, and I’ll play a couple of times this week. It’s passion.”
—Jim Balsillie speaking to Tech Check at CNBC this week, when asked about his continuing aspirations to own a NHL team
from Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated,
As training camps convene across the land, we continue with our tour of each division and the pressing questions that await each team. So far, we’ve covered the Northeast, Southeast, Northwest and Pacific. Now let’s dive into the Atlantic, where the going promises to be choppy for the majority of its five inhabitants.
Coming off a surprise trip to the Eastern Conference Finals, Flyers GM Paul Holmgren settled for a few minor roster tweaks, mostly cap-related, to improve his team’s chances in 2008-09. But even without a big move, his lineup looks to be much improved this season, thanks to the return of perennial All-Star Gagne, who can key the first-line offense.
Assuming, of course, that he’s physically able.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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