Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Empty Netters at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
According to James Mirtle, Crosby isn’t even anywhere near the league leaders in secondary assists.
So while there are plenty valid complaints of Crosby’s game (he tends to go down a little too easily sometimes in order to draw penalties in our book), ripping him for loading up on secondary assists in order to bulk up his points totals is stupid and inaccurate.
more, including a graphic breakdown showing Sid’s primary and secondary assists this season
from Mike Brophy of the Hockey News,
But what if Ovechkin doesn’t want to play in Washington any longer? What if the young superstar tells the Caps he’d prefer to play someplace a little more cosmopolitan than Washington? You know, it could happen.
And frankly, I think Caps GM George McPhee should, at the very least, explore the possibility of trading the 22-year-old sniper.
From Evan Weiner at MCN Sports,
The new Medvedev league isn’t going to create anymore interest in hockey in Europe. The existing Russia Super League is widely considered to be the second best level of competition circuit in the world behind the NHL. There is also a second league in Russia, the Premiere League. There are leagues throughout Europe and the National Hockey League has been hiring players from European countries for decades.
Getting players to perform in a new and what appears to be an eastern European league will not be a problem; there are more players than jobs available always. Getting teams properly financed is a major challenge. With the exception of London, Europe does not have North American style arenas with luxury boxes and club seats and in-house eateries that produce extra revenues. If Medvedev is serious about challenging the NHL financially, he better have deep pocketed owners who can afford to lose a lot of money.
Calgary Flames right wing Jarome Iginla, Dallas Stars defenseman Sergei Zubov and Philadelphia Flyers right wing Joffrey Lupul have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending December 16.
from the Thrashers Blog,
So, four consecutive losses, I think it’s safe to say we can expect some changes. What are they? We’ve seen the last of Kovalchuk and Hossa on the same line, for now. The addition of Mark Recchi gives Kovalchuk a potential scorer on the right wing, so that enables Don Waddell to move Hossa back to the second line. Perhaps this will help spark Slava Kozlov and boost Marian Hossa’s production. Hoss hasn’t been bad, but I don’t think he’s approached the production he had at this time last season. He’s on pace for under 80 points this season.
more on Atlanta…
Watch the NBC promo for the Winter Classic on January 1, 2008.
added 1:03pm, NBC Sports today announced that Bob Costas will host NBC’s broadcast coverage of the AMP Energy NHL Winter Classic between the Buffalo Sabres and Pittsburgh Penguins.
Costas has a history broadcasting hockey, serving as the play-by-play commentator for the Syracuse Blazers of the old Eastern Hockey League in 1973-74 and also occasionally filling in for the late, great Dan Kelly on KMOX’s St. Louis Blues radiocasts in the last 70s and early 80s.
from Tripp Mickle at SportsBusiness Journal (paid sub.),
NHL Players’ Association Executive Director Paul Kelly has invited NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to attend and address players at the union’s summer meetings. The invitation is the first Bettman has received in 15 years as commissioner.
Kelly informally extended the invitation when he met Bettman for the first time this fall. He later repeated his invite when he spoke before the league’s board of governors Nov. 29. A written invitation to the commissioner followed in an e-mail early this month.
“I was pleased to be invited,” Bettman said in an e-mail. “We believe that this represents a constructive development in our relationship.”...
“In past years, my appearance at the board of governors or the commissioner’s appearance at one of our meetings would not have been an enjoyable event,” Kelly said. “The players now hold the same view I hold. It’s time to grow the revenues and look at new markets and work with each other instead of against each other.”
The last time the Washington Capitals played the Wings at the Joe Louis Arena, they won the game 4-1 with goals from Jaromir Jagr, Robert Lang, Dainius Zubrus and Peter Bondra. That was in November of 2003 and it seems a lot longer than that.
Boy, how things have changed. The Caps decided to unload some high-priced players, taking on the attitude of building from with-in the organization. They have been active in the UFA market, but are spending wisely instead of throwing big money at big names. In the very near future, the Caps will become a team to fear, as long as they sign Alexander Ovechkin to a long term contract, something I see happening by the end of this season.
Today is also a day the Red Wings organization should have taken a look at their stance on the Hockey Bloggers. The Wings continue their refusal to acknowledge reputable hockey blogs and are paying the price for it. Heck, today is a perferct example. The University of Michigan hires Rich Rodriguez to coach their football team, the Detroit Lions lose again, the Pistons win again and we have 15 inches of snow to battle with today.
The Wings are hosting Alexander Ovechkin tonight, and yes, that is a the story for hockey fans, but sports radio hasn’t even mentioned it, the Wings beat writers do their typical work about it and that is all we have here in Detroit.
How refreshing it would have been if the Wings had invited or allowed a few hockey bloggers into the press box tonight. But then again, they would not be able to control what they write, and THAT folks is the story.
via the Vancouver Province,
Just compare the New Jersey Devils’ air (and bus) miles since Dec. 1 to the kilometres racked up by the Canucks.
- Canucks: Vancouver, St. Paul, Chicago, Nashville, Vancouver, Los Angeles/Anaheim, San Jose, Edmonton, Vancouver—13,705 kilometres;
- Devils: Newark, Manhattan, Washington, Boston, Newark—1,440 kilometres.
from Allan Maki of the Globe & Mail,
Dave King can see the possibilities because he’s seen the way hockey is changing in Europe and Russia - the emergence of rich owners, the advent of new arenas and now Russia and Sweden refusing to go along with the IIHF-NHL player transfer agreement, one they believe doesn’t reward them enough for the players they produce.
So a new European hockey league rising out of opportunity or even defiance? Having coached throughout Europe and with Mettalurg Magnitogorsk of the Russian Super League, King knows the mindset, can see it happening.
He can also see the NHL doing little if anything, as a new league proposed by Russian energy mogul Alexander Medvedev is being planned for Russia, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Ukraine and perhaps Finland.
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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