Kukla's Korner Hockey
From the AP via KDKA.com:
A person in the NHL tells The Associated Press that Mike Babcock and the Detroit Red Wings have agreed to a 3-year contract for the Stanley Cup winning coach.
The person spoke Tuesday night on the condition of anonymity because the team planned an 11 a.m. Wednesday news conference to announce the deal.
The Wings said Tuesday night they would hold a news conference, but didn’t release details.
From Aaron Portzline at Puck-rakers in the Columbus Dispatch,
The Pittsburgh Penguins won’t be able to keep their Stanley Cup runner-up club together because of salary cap issues. It looks like the Blue Jackets are prepared to offer a helping hand.
The two clubs have had preliminary trade talks, the Dispatch has learned. The discussions have involved Pittsburgh trading the rights to one or two of their pending unrestricted free agents—players the Penguins have decided they can’t keep because of the salary cap—to the Blue Jackets for draft pick or player compensation.
It’s unclear who the players are, but Ryan Malone and Brooks Orpik seem like logical choices.
From Ken Warren at Canwest News via the National Post,
The club already has $32.3 million US locked up in the ‘08-09 salaries of Heatley, Spezza, Daniel Alfredsson, Mike Fisher, Martin Gerber and Chris Phillips.
The Senators must re-sign restricted free agents Antoine Vermette and Andrej Meszaros, while also contemplating whether to re-sign unrestricted-free-agent centre Cory Stillman, winger Shean Donovan and defenceman Mike Commodore, or any other player who may become available on July 1.
Commodore, for one, wants to know who the club’s new coach is before weighing his options on whether to return.
read on… *negotiations with Chris Kelley not going well, either
The Los Angeles Kings have fired head coach Marc Crawford.
Kings president and general manager Dean Lombardi made the announcement Tuesday that Crawford will not return next season as the team’s head coach despite having one year left on his contract.
Note: Kings press release
From Michael Gluskin at The News-Dispatch,
Fans attending a playoff game, where the stakes are always high, shouldn’t have to be told how to dress or what to say during the course of a game. They should understand that their attire, and cheering especially, could help encourage their favorite team to victory.
Instead, many of these recent playoff games seem to be played in a scripted environment. When a crowd isn’t being told what to shout by a JumboTron, the group is often awkwardly silent. This is unfortunate because the beauty of sports is that it’s entirely unscripted and anything can happen.
John Buccigross’ final column of the season. From ESPN:
As fans of the game who give our money and time to the sport, this should make us proud. Nothing comes easy or cheap on the road to the Stanley Cup. Our champion is 100 percent deserving. This is also true for NCAA hockey, Canadian Junior, Minnesota high schools and every hockey trophy from mite to beer leagues.
Staying away from “boom thinking” has kept the Red Wings consistently excellent from top to bottom. Their portfolio has netted four Stanley Cups since 1997. They live in an old, rundown ranch, but they have no mortgage payments and, thus, live below their means.
Yesterday I posted reference to Joe Pelletier’s list of potential HHOF candidates this year. Today, David Staples at the Edmonton Journal took issue with Joe’s remarks about Glenn Anderson, whom Joe inferred might not be a good candidate because of his personal life history. Staples’ response:
Anderson was an offbeat guy, not the best interview, not a favourite of the media. He also had a major issue with child support payments, which will make some people think less of him as a man and certainly as a father.
Now, I would never argue Glenn Anderson belongs in the Fathers Hall of Fame. He has had his struggles in that regard and he has to live with his failings and, one would hope, make amends as he can.
But other players have black marks on their personal lives, from problems related to cocaine use to allegations of having sex with minors, from issues of tax evasion to just being a plain old jerk. If the committee investigated every player thoroughly, it would likely find some blemish on every man, some more serious than the problems caused by Anderson, some less serious.
But should issues of morality really be the deciding factor with Anderson? That doesn’t seem consistent or fair.
It’s a good question in general: How important should one’s personal life be when it comes to entering the HHOF?
From the Buffalo Sabres:
The Portland Pirates announced today a new, long-term affiliation agreement with the Buffalo Sabres effective with the 2008-2009 AHL season. The announcement was made by Pirates Managing Owner/CEO Brian Petrovek, Pirates Chairman/Governor Lyman Bullard, Sabres’ Managing Partner Larry Quinn, and Sabres’ General Manager Darcy Regier.
The Anaheim Ducks made the decision to sever its ties with the Pirates earlier this month for reasons of wanting their AHL team in closer proximity.
Looking at the map, I’d have to say Buffalo didn’t share the same concern.
Update 2:47pm ET: And as a commenter just pointed out… the Portland Pirates play in Maine. More coffee for me! Let me kill that map…
From an interview with Adrian Dater at the Denver Post, actor Mike Myers:
“Any time I meet an NHL player, I get all tongue-tied. I’m like, eight years old again. I have to say, it’s only about five years ago that I gave up my dream of playing in the NHL. It’s something that a Canadian man holds onto for a very long time, well past the appropriate age.”
(Or in some cases, Canadian women. We all have our own inappropriate NHL dreams, methinks.)
From Allan Maki at the Globe & Mail hockey blog,
Lanny McDonald graduated Tuesday.
After a lengthy and productive NHL career, and another as a businessman and Special Olympics advocate, McDonald took part in the University of Calgary 2008 convocation exercise and received an honorary doctor of laws degree.
Technically, that makes the former Calgary Flames’ forward Dr. Lanny King McDonald. But to hockey fans he’ll always be the guy with the Yosemite Sam mustache who won the Stanley Cup in his final NHL game.
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org