Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Chris Russell at the Sporting News,
That is why commissioner Gary Bettman did the smart thing for his league in the long term. He went to Versus and NBC, two networks that were willing to show him much more love than ESPN was. It’s about amount of coverage, and promotion and dedicated set nights that hockey fans know they can count on.
It’s all hockey, all the time on Versus. As Sydney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin and countless others continue to amaze, the NHL will be what the NBA became. It’s a new era, and it is absolute must-see TV.
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star:
“Look, I was just commenting on what I’ve seen for 51 games now,” he said. “Believe me, I’m not asking for a special rule book for the Rangers or for Jaromir Jagr.”
Here’s Shanahan’s problem.
When he was working in concert with the league to fix an ailing game, he was widely viewed to be a player putting the good of the game first.
But after ripping into league officials for supposedly ignoring obvious fouls on Jagr, it’s inescapable that Shanahan will now be seen more as a player simply attempting to use the process for the benefit of himself and his teammates.
Yes, and we should all be shocked to find out that Shanahan has biases…yeesh…
from the CBC,
A 13-year-old Alberta girl is about to make NHL history, when she becomes the first person to sing O Canada before a game in Cree.
Akina Shirt, who lives in Edmonton but is originally from the Saddle Lake First Nation, will sing the national anthem in Cree before the puck drops for the Calgary Flames-Vancouver Canucks game on Saturday night.
Thanks to a KK member for the tip…
from the Laconia Citzen,
For 13 seasons the fearless right wing with a fierce mean streak set the tone for the B’s with his bone crushing hits and his physical play. On Thursday, O’Reilly had a chance to share some of his experiences here in the Lake City at the Greater Laconia-Weirs Beach Chamber of Commerce’s 88th annual Awards Dinner and Membership Meeting.
Terry’s views on the current NHL…
“They are calling penalties that are invisible to me,” continued O’Reilly. “By doing that they are confusing the players and interrupting the flow of the game and making the outcome of a lot of important games on the specialty teams ... that’s not what the game is all about. It’s a game that’s meant to be five-on-five competition and a power play for a flagrant penalty. Now there’s so many incidental penalties and double minors there are just too many strong scoring opportunities that can tilt the direction of a game.”
from Johnette Howard of Newsday,
So is the NHL’s problem Bettman? Or is the problem that hockey is still hockey?
Teasing out the answer is complex, but developments in the past year don’t augur well for Bettman.
His decision to move the league’s TV rights to NBC and the barely known and unevenly distributed Versus network rather than take a concession-laden deal to stay with ESPN could go down as the most disastrous move of his career. Ratings are minuscule; the national audience for Versus games is less than 200,000.
from Allan Maki of the Globe and Mail, News flash:
The Stanley Cup champion Carolina Hurricanes visit the White House today to be honoured by U.S. president George W. Bush.
Aid: “Mr. President, the Carolina Hurricanes will be in the East Room this afternoon for their special ceremony.”
Bush: “Hurricanes in the White House? Get those federal emergency folks ready. We don’t want another Katrina, if you know what I mean.”
Aid: “Ah, no sir. The Carolina Hurricanes are a hockey team. They won the Stanley Cup last season and will be here so you can congratulate them.”
Bush: “Where are these Hurricanes from, anyway - East or West Carolina?”
Aid: “That would be North or South, sir.”
from Vancouver Sun via Canada.com,
The subject cried out for a little investigative work and the questions were simple. Is there too much swearing in hockey? Could anything be done about it?
“Of course, there is too much swearing,” conceded Vancouver Canucks defenceman Mattias Ohlund. “Hockey is an emotional game. You have 20 guys on each team and three or four coaches and they all want to win. Guys are jacked up and, at times, you get upset. It doesn’t matter if you play in Sweden, the NHL, the East Coast League or in a beer league, swearing is just part of the mentality of the game.”
But does it have to be so, uh, frequent? Children may be watching and listening.
from the Ann Arbor News,
That’s similar to how Johnson has analyzed and improved his play in his 1 1/2 seasons with the Wolverines. Johnson said he’s more concerned with just doing his own job in the defensive end instead of running around wherever the puck went as a freshman.
He has also adjusted better to how he’s officiated, dropping his penalty minutes dramatically from the school-record 149 he had a year ago.
Michigan coach Red Berenson points to other improvements in Johnson’s game, such as better puck touches on the power play, better defensive positioning to stop odd-man rushes and his blossoming offense.
via the LA Times (reg. req.),
Scott Niedermayer, who sat out the last two games because of a stress fracture in his right foot, will be back on skates Saturday and could return to the lineup as early as Tuesday when the Ducks play at San Jose.
Niedermayer, who consulted with team physician Ronald Glousman, said he was given the OK to return to the ice after X-rays proved negative.
Niedermayer will travel with the team to Nashville but said he doesn’t plan to play in Saturday’s game against the Predators, even if he doesn’t have any problems with his foot during the morning skate.
Niedermayer played coy when asked if the fracture had totally healed. But he admitted there was some concern over playing on consecutive nights next week against the Sharks.
“You want to … try and be smart about it,” he said. “You want to make sure you’re there for the long haul.”
from the Calgary Sun,
Iginla, sidelined nearly a month with a knee injury, skated on a line in practice yesterday with recently re-acquired centre Craig Conroy. Alex Tanguay rounded out the trio on the left wing.
Iginla and Conroy were a dynamic duo for most of three seasons with the Flames, including the 2001-02 campaign in which Iginla won both the Art Ross and Rocket Richard trophies.
If Conroy does skate on a line tonight with Iginla when the Flames host the Colmbus Blue Jackets, it would separate the captain and Daymond Langkow.
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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