Kukla's Korner Hockey
For too long, the NHL has tried to woo the disinterested masses. That needs to stop. Bettman's decision to jump from ESPN to OLN is a good first step. By switching from the world's No. 1 sports network to an obscure cable channel, the NHL has lowered expectations. In America, hockey will always be the ugly stepsister when it's sitting alongside football, baseball, and basketball. But put the NHL on a channel that's more commonly associated with hunting, fishing, and competitive barbecuing, and it actually stands out.read on...sometimes with a story from Slate, you have to click on an ad to continue reading, but this one wasn't like that, so it may work for you too...
Davidson was on WXYT in Detroit, making the talk circuit rounds, and stated he has heard that Toronto is interested in Manny Legace. Of course, after the conversation, Art Regner, self appointed Wings expert, stated that too. But of course he never mentioned that in the last month. J.D. said the Wings may be interested in Martin Gerber. Davidson had high praise for him, almost like he would go after him if he were involved with a team. He said Gerber had a bad virus and lost about 12 pounds right before the playoffs and lost all of his strength. He was also asked about Yzerman. Regner again said "J.D., you once had to make this type of decision, when age starts creaping up." Davidson said no, I had to retire at 29 due to knee and back injuries. Good job Art. J.D. went on to say Yzerman will come to the right decision. Leave it at that. added 4:20pm, A note on Leafs goaltending from the CP via TSN,
The Toronto Maple Leafs picked up the one-year club option on goalie Mikael Tellqvist's contract on Thursday. The 26-year-old Tellqvist played in 25 games for the Maple Leafs last season and posted a record of 10-11-2 with a 3.13 goals-against average. He registered career-highs in games played, wins and shutouts (two). Tellqvist and J.S. Aubin are both under contract for next season and will probably be the team's two goalies if it doesn't sign any free agents.
from the NY Islanders,
At a press conference this afternoon at the Long Island Marriott Hotel and Conference Center, Islanders owner Charles Wang introduced the team's new Hockey Operations staff. Neil Smith, a 1974 Islanders draft pick, the owner of a 1981-82 Stanley Cup ring from his days as an Islanders scout and the architect of the Rangers' 1993-94 Stanley Cup championship team, has been named the fourth general manager in Islanders history. Ted Nolan, the head coach of the 2006 Memorial Cup Finalist Moncton Wildcats, the 1996-97 NHL Coach of the Year while with the Buffalo Sabres and the head coach of the 1993 Memorial Cup champion Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, is the Islanders' new head coach. In addition, Islanders Hall of Famer Pat LaFontaine, who played for Nolan in Buffalo and Smith as a member of the Rangers, has been named Senior Advisor to the Owner.continued
Red Wings ticket prices will remain unchanged for the 2006-07 season. "The new collective bargaining agreement with the players has allowed us to stabilize ticket prices, and for that we are very happy," said Wings vice-president Jim Devellano.
It appears one of the New York Islanders' most-beloved players was partly responsible for brokering the deal which allowed coach Ted Nolan another shot in the NHL. Sources told Sportsnet Pat LaFontaine, with Neil Smith's blessing, was instrumental in bringing aboard Nolan as the Islanders new coach. LaFontaine is also reportedly in line for a full-time position down the road with the Isles, either as an executive vice-president or, eventually, team president. It was announced that LaFontaine would be hired as a special consultant for now.continued
from the Orangeville Citizen,
The sign at the entrance to Teen Ranch, on Highway 10, south of Orangeville, welcomes the Florida Panthers to the Ice Coral and for 18 NHL wanna-be's, the sign may be seen as a beacon of things to come. A development camp put on by the Panthers, is underway at the ranch, for players who have already been recruited and signed by the team in previous junior drafts. From this crop of young hopefuls, the coaching staff hopes the next generation of Panther players will emerge. "It's a chance to get started on some team building and refine the skills from the selection in the last draft," said Duane Sutter director of player development for the team. The goals of the camp include; on and off ice training, team building, nutrition advice and allowing both the players and coaches to get acquainted.continued
from Mike Brophy of the Hockey News,
• The NHL should suspend Georges Laraque for his late hit from behind on Carolina’s Andrew Ladd. It was a blatant attempt to injure and has no place in the new NHL. Besides, the removal of Laraque would open the door for Todd Harvey’s return to action and he would be more effective. • When it became obvious the Oilers weren’t going to win, why on earth did Edmonton keep playing workhorse defenseman Chris Pronger? The last thing the Oilers needed was to lose him to an injury in a game that was already decided. Pronger played 11:21 in the second period and finished the contest playing 28:21. The Oilers would have been smarter to rest Pronger late in the third period.more
from Black Athlete,
He began skating in his hometown of Montreal, Quebec, Canada, at age four. Like most Canadian kids, he loved and played hockey, and his idols growing up were hockey players, Mario Lemieux and Wayne Gretzsky, who at that time played for the team that Georges plays for now, the Edmonton Oilers. Laraque not only played hockey, but football and soccer. His father was a soccer coach in Canada. At age 16, he decided to forget about football and soccer and concentrate on hockey. Unlike most players who grow the infamous beards during the playoffs, he doesn't. But let's get it straight. He doesn't wear dreadlocks.continued update 4:28pm, The link appears to have been pulled. It was working earlier in the day. Sorry, not sure what happened.
from the blog of Ted Leonsis,
Three years ago I predicted that the Southeast Division would be very competitive and could well be the best division in hockey. It was filled with great young players as well as star players that were hungry, hardworking, key members of well constructed teams. Tampa Bay went on to win the Stanley Cup in 2004 and now Carolina has a 2 to 0 lead in this years Finals. We could see back to back world championships for our division, and the teams are only getting stronger. Atlanta is on the cusp of playoff respectability, Florida is stocked with great young assets, and the Capitals are quickly rebuilding our team.continued Ted also mentioned how strong the Southeast was in the interiview I did with him about 2 months ago.
He realizes the Southeast division is getting stronger with players like Staal, Luongo, Jokinen, Lecavalier and Kovalchuk and must get his team stronger to compete with them.added 11:57am, I just discovered KK has been added to the Washington Capitals website along with the hockey blogs Off Wing Opinion, Japer's Rink and general sports blog DCSportsChick. The link is very much appreciated.
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org