Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News,
The Sabres can trim by shopping Maxim Afinogenov and Jaroslav Spacek and saying goodbye to Teppo Numminen and rental Dainius Zubrus. Afinogenov, Spacek and Numminen made $8.825 million combined last season. Afinogenov and Spacek are scheduled to cost the Sabres $6.975 million next season. It’s too much for a team that was 16-7-3 without Afinogenov, 9-6-2 without Spacek and 7-4-1 without both.
My money’s on Drew Stafford.
Buffalo also needs to account for restricted free agents Nathan Paetsch, Derek Roy, Daniel Paille and Andrew Peters. Peters will gladly accept his 10 percent raise. And this doesn’t account for Clarke MacArthur and Patrick Kaleta, whose NHL salaries for next season are $1.125 million combined. The Sabres need a little more Kaleta and a little less Max, and they also need depth for the blue line.
from the LA Times,
Meanwhile, the Ducks have stepped up their efforts to lock up goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere to a long-term deal. Both Burke and Giguere’s agent, Bob Sauve, said they had a productive meeting last week at Sauve’s office outside Montreal.
“We’ve since exchanged proposals,” Burke said. “I’d say things are going well. But it’s not done.”
Giguere is believed to be seeking at least $6 million a season. Sauve said the Ducks are serious about signing the 30-year-old, who has a 31-13 postseason record and will be an unrestricted free agent come July 1.
more on the retirement talk of Niedermayer but nothing new, still waiting for an answer…
from Stephen Brunt of the Globe and Mail,
The NHL hierarchy right now seems determined to do anything in its power to prevent a blue-chip potential owner from moving a moribund franchise in a dead American market to a Canadian city where folks are falling all over themselves to offer up deposits on season’s tickets.
To that end, various league sources have started trying to demonize Jim Balsillie, referring to him off the record as “a clown,” sending out the message that he’s a Mark Cuban in waiting, perhaps an Al Davis, that he’d be a destructive influence on the league. (Unlike, say, the various former NHL owners who have been led away in handcuffs.)
from the AP via Fox Sports,
Timonen and forward Scott Hartnell agreed to give up an opportunity at securing a free-agent contract windfall to accept a trade from Nashville to Philadelphia, hoping to play a part in transforming the Flyers from the worst team in the National Hockey League to a playoff contender next season.
“I really feel we’re a playoff team,” Timonen said on Tuesday. “If we can add a couple more players, a first-line center, maybe some experience, we’re going to be even better.”
from the AP via Sports Illustrated,
The Sabres retained the rights to forward Thomas Vanek by issuing a qualifying offer to their leading goal scorer.
It will take more than a one-year, $942,000 deal—the offer matching Vanek’s salary last season—to keep him playing in Buffalo.
The move, announced by Vanek’s agent, Stephen Bartlett, on Tuesday, is considered only the first step for the Sabres, who are expected to attempt negotiating a long-term contract with Vanek to prevent other teams from luring him away.
from the Ottawa Citizen,
Seeing Gary Roberts in an Ottawa Senators uniform might not be a long shot after all….
Last February, when the Florida Panthers were shopping him before the trade deadline, Roberts indicated a preference for Ottawa or Toronto, since that would put him close to his 17-year-old daughter Jordan, who attends a boarding school in Toronto.
It’s believed Roberts would still like to play in Ottawa, but Curran wouldn’t offer a commitment.
“A number of people have speculated about Ottawa and they’re entitled to their opinions,” he said.
“But we haven’t committed to anything, whether we’re able to get something done in Pittsburgh at this late date or whether we’ll wait until July 1 to see what’s available.”
Is Japers’ Rink onto something regarding the Capitals new jersey?
from the Ahwatukee Foothills News,
Ed Kastelic is Ahwatukee Foothills’ version of Arnold Schwarzenegger, constantly reinventing his career.
But instead of becoming a bodybuilder turned actor turned politician, Kastelic has gone from professional hockey tough guy to fitness expert, and now from fitness expert to entrepreneur.
Six months ago, Kastelic received a patent for a new brand of exercise equipment he invented, called Eskalation, which consists of multi-tiered blocks that can be adjusted in seconds during a workout and used for specific movements….
During 220 career games in the National Hockey League with the Washington Capitals and Hartford Whalers, Kastelic racked up 719 penalty minutes. He played in an era during the late ‘80s and early ‘90s when the NHL may have been at its roughest, and Kastelic personified the style.
Kastelic was suspended numerous times during his career and has duked it out with some of the game’s most famous fighters from the last two decades. He even knocked out legendary brawler Bob Probert during a junior league game in the early ‘80s.
from the Barrie Advance,
While admitting Raycroft did have some bad moments, Tucker believes Raycroft may have been a little overworked, and needs to get a solid backup – someone who has the confidence of his teammates and who can fill in without the quality of the team’s performance suffering.
“I think obviously you’ve got to find somebody that can jump in and win us some hockey games when Andrew’s not in the lineup. When he’s in there, we need him to be great. Every team needs good goaltending. We had it for the most part last year, but there’s games where Andrew could be better, as well as a lot of the rest of us who could have been better,” said Tucker.
“I don’t think you can ever create good chemistry on a team if you’re blowing it up constantly. And I think that our team needs that sort of chemistry to be a good hockey team, especially in the City of Toronto,” he asserted. “We’ve got a good group of guys, and if we can augment that with some good young guys and some free agents, I think we’re fine.”
Many of you know the long hours I put in at KK, but this is not a complaint. I love what I am doing but thought I would be able to get a little break.
Not… see my NHL blog today.
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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