Kukla's Korner Hockey
Feel free to join him around 12:15pm ET and check NHL.com for the TV broadcast schedule for today.
from the Edmonton Journal,
After a long period of economic dark days, Canadian NHL franchises are suddenly a hot commodity.
So what has changed?
Owners, academics, business journalists and financial experts say a number of factors have combined to make Canadian teams a better risk—namely the strong Canadian currency, the financial stability brought about by the 2005 collective bargaining agreement (CBA) between the players union and the league and, finally, a new kind of development model for NHL arenas that is seeing them built not as lonesome, stand-alone structures but as catalysts for larger commercial and residential developments in city cores.
from the Daily Herald,
Patrick Sharp was only too happy to re-sign with the Blackhawks for four more years.
Now, Sharp will be interested to see what happens this summer and if free agents feel as he does, that the Hawks are a franchise on the rise, making Chicago a prime destination.
“The way the organization treats the players is first class, and anyone that’s been to the city of Chicago knows what it’s all about,” Sharp said. “Attendance is growing at the United Center, the Hawks are on the way up, and hopefully that attracts some free agents that want to come to Chicago.”
from Chuck Gormley of the CourierPost,
The Flyers are believed to be at the top of Forsberg’s list and if Paul Holmgren can devise a suitable contract offer, Forsberg could be wearing orange and black as early as Valentine’s Day, when the Tampa Bay Lightning visit the Flyers at the Wachovia Center.
With a few tweaks, the Flyers can create between $2.5 million and $3 million in cap space. If they offer Forsberg $1 million to play the final 26 games (52 days) of the regular season, his prorated salary of $3.54 million would count against the cap.
If they offer him $750,000 to play the remainder of the season, $2.65 million would count against the cap.
Judging from Forsberg’s recent comments, he’ll want a contract that includes next season and perhaps another, taking him through the 2009-10 season. If that is the case, the aforementioned salary figures (between $2.6 million and $3.5 million) would likely count against the Flyers’ cap….
Which brings us back to our original question: Should the Flyers do it?
from Tony Gallagher of the Vancouver Province,
...Hell, Leonsis would have been better as far as his fellow owners were concerned to wait for a team to make an offer to Ovechkin, then match it.
He could then claim he was dragged kicking and screaming into doing such a thing, all the while proclaiming he is delighted to have Alex in the fold. To volunteer this kind of money seems bizarre. And with Ovechkin getting this much money and this much of the cap space, how the hell do you build a team around him?
And if you don’t build a team, how do you bring in fans and stop being a perpetual drain on the other the owners? In short, why are the rich teams putting up with this?
from Red Fisher of the Montreal Gazette,
The Penguins now stand No. 2 overall in the East, seven points behind Ottawa, 2-0 losers to Tampa Bay last night - but for how long?
You don’t lose a player like Crosby without paying the price, just as the Senators are learning now that Dany Heatley is sidelined with a long-term injury.
The best Pittsburgh can hope for is that Crosby won’t be sidelined too long. The extent of the injury won’t be known for several days, but normally it’s measured in terms of weeks and even months - but you don’t need an MRI reading to understand how much Crosby is going to be missed.
He is the NHL’s golden boy. He is everything that is good about this game, but the Penguins aren’t the only losers. He sells tickets wherever the game is played, so teams in double-digit numbers are losers. Major sponsors of the game are losers.
from the Detroit Free Press,
Last year, the hosts of a popular home-makeover television show arrived at Henrik Zetterberg’s house in Bloomfield Hills to begin remodeling his kitchen. As cameras showed viewers the inside, hosts talked with Zetterberg and his girlfriend, singer/model Emma Andersson, about the project.
It was MTV “Cribs” meets IKEA. And almost no one saw it, at least not in the United States. The show, called “Room Service,” aired in Sweden, where Zetterberg grew up, and where he has become one of the most celebrated athletes.
added 9:24am, Another “What’s Wrong With Hockeytown” story by Ryan Pyette of the London Free Press via Slam Sports.
from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
Apparently it’s that time of year for those who cover and follow the NHL to let their imaginations run wild.
Time for the laundry list of asinine Alex Tanguay trade rumours out of Montreal and the ol’ Olli Jokinen speculation out of Florida.
This year, the pulp fiction is being spiced up locally by fabricated contract offers for Dion Phaneuf, manic mentions Mats Sundin could land here and even talk there is a snowball’s chance in hell Kristian Huselius will re-sign in Cowtown.
Yet somehow, through it all, no one is talking about Daymond Langkow.
from Rick Westhead of the Toronto Star,
On a steely cold December morning, Blackhawks defenceman Brent Seabrook stumbled out of bed at 4:45 and quickly made his way to a TV station in downtown Chicago for a peculiar assignment: sharing a recipe for penne and chicken with pink vodka sauce – and winning new hockey converts.
The 22-year-old Seabrook has since appeared on the ABC affiliate station for a segment about New Year’s Eve fashions, while several of his teammates in recent weeks have been guests of a rival channel to tout holiday gift ideas.
“It’s pretty early, but that’s morning TV,” says Seabrook, in his third season with the Blackhawks. “I got a chance to sleep later in the day. Hey, it’s just nice being recognized around the city these days.”
That the networks would covet appearances by Seabrook and other Blackhawks players speaks to the team’s startling reversal of fortunes. Suddenly in Chicago, where, in recent years, news about the Blackhawks was relegated to the last page of the sports section when it was covered at all, the Blackhawks are surging both on and off the ice.
from Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
This disaster, on the heels of the 6-1 loss at Chicago, gives coach Andy Murray and his staff plenty to work on as the team readies for the road.
“The message today was not to shun your responsibility, to take it seriously, acknowledge that you weren’t good enough today to get the job done,” Murray said. “Myself, as a coach, I have to acknowledge when my team doesn’t play as well as it needs to play. Then I have to take responsibility.
“It’s all about responsibility. We’ll go to work and prepare them for the next game in Nashville and review what we need to do better. We need to have their effort. We need to have a high determination level. We’re that type of team that cannot be successful if we’re not operating at full power.”
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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