Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution,
lya Kovalchuk missed the first full week of Thrashers training camp and contract talks are going nowhere. The two parties have not spoken since last Thursday. On his Friday morning "Breakfast with Bernie" appearance on 680 The Fan, the Thrashers' corporate broadcast partner, Atlanta Spirit CEO Bernie Mullin spoke about the two sides' differences. Kovalchuk, the league's co-leader in goals in 2003-04, is currently playing in Russia and, if the dispute is not settled by Oct. 5, plans to play a full season there. Mullin said he did not think Kovalchuk could make an equivalent sum in Russia, saying on the radio, "I don't think the economics are there compared to whatever he could average here, $5.5 or $6 [million]." Agents and players say while salaries in Russia might be half of what they are in the NHL, players secretively take home the entire sum tax-free — which makes the true knowledge of those salaries such a shadowy business. In the NHL, with taxes and other deductions, players take home roughly half of their gross.
Center Ice is now available for $129, $30 of the regular price. That offer is good through 10/31 and a free preview will be available for the first week beginning 10/5. You can call Comcast direct to order but if you get a CSR who doesn't know what you are talking about, ask for someone who does. update 6:48pm, Jim, a reader from the Philadelphia area just commented the same package is available there too. I would think Center Ice for cable subscribers in North America is now available or will be soon. CI for satellite has been available for a couple of weeks.
from the Boston Globe,
Bruins netminder Andrew Raycroft finally came to contract terms this afternoon, agreeing to a one-year deal for approximately $1.2 million -- essentially the figure he was offered prior to beginning his holdout when training camp opened on Monday.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
This is the story of a star hockey player who's lost his star and a beleaguered hockey town banking its future that he can find it again. The story of Paul Kariya and the Nashville Predators is the story of a marriage of convenience that both sides hope blossoms into a full-fledged, honest-to-goodness romance. Whether it happens, whatever happens, promises to make this surprising relationship one of the most interesting stories of the coming NHL season. For both parties, the stakes are high.
The storied Montreal Canadiens are getting a mascot - and not just any old one. Youppi!, who was the Montreal Expos' mascot for years before the team moved south, is coming out of retirement to join the National Hockey League team. The super furry animal is still orange but is expected to wear the Canadiens' white or red jersey when he entertains fans at the Bell Centre. There was no immediate comment from Canadiens management whether they believe the new signing can help the team win its first Stanley Cup since 1993. Youppi! was once ejected from a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Canadiens will be hoping the lumbering giant can keep his temper in check.
from the National Post,
As a foreign student of the game, Vancouver Canucks defenceman Bryan Allen spent the NHL lockout in Russia last winter and learned many things. The name of his coach was not among them. "I still don't know," he admits. "I never found out. I called him coach. He did a lot of yelling. A couple of times he screamed at me. It didn't bother me; I had no idea what he was saying." Allen did a lot of screaming, too, during three months -- the second half of last season -- playing for Khimik of the Russian Superleague. Khimik is from the industrial city of Voskerensk, about a two-hour drive from Moscow, which is Rio by comparison.
from the Maven of MSG Network,
Without having stepped on National Hockey League ice, scoring an NHL goal or taking a penalty, Sidney Crosby already is a remarkable major leaguer. Remarkable, like Wayne Gretzky. Remarkable, like Bobby Orr before him. And, if you like ancient history, remarkable like the supreme center, Jean Beliveau. Like the aforementioned terrific trio, Crosby has gotten more attention before playing in the bigs than 99 percent of those who spent a decade playing NHL hockey.
from Phil Coffey of NHL.com,
When you're the Montreal Canadiens, expectations are always higher. That's the price you pay for being one of the most dominant franchises in sports history, one that has 24 Stanley Cup championship banners hanging from the rafters of the Bell Centre. Scrutiny becomes all the more acute for the Canadiens because they haven't had a victory lap with the Cup since 1992-93 -- an eternity in a city where championships were expected for generations. But Montreal fans can breathe a sigh of relief, because someone who knows just how hard and exhilarating winning in the NHL can be is running the show.more Also, from NHL.com, Dandenault excited to play in front of the home crowd.
You want another reason that the NHL's lockout was the worst thing to happen to sports since Terrell Owens developed his own line of motivational-speaking tapes? Try this: It just killed nearly a century's worth of hockey greatness. Oh, that's not the company line, at least not exactly. On the surface, most people would probably look at the retirements of Ron Francis, Mark Messier, Scott Stevens and Al MacInnis and say, "Old school. It was time." No argument there -- on the surface. On the surface, these are four hockey dinosaurs coming to a well-earned rest after years of classic service. Between Francis, Messier, Stevens and MacInnis are a dozen Stanley Cup championships, some of the most prolific scoring totals in NHL history and defensive excellence that essentially set the standard for a generation to meet. Good stuff. And yet not one of these four guys felt fully ready to leave the sport. Until the lockout, that is.
from the CP via Yahoo,
Remaining National Hockey League free agents (note: some players whose names appear on this list may recently have signed with their respective clubs but contracts have not been filed with the League):
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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