Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
At some point between now and next Tuesday, Maple Leafs interim GM Cliff Fletcher will go to captain Mats Sundin on bended knee and ask him in the nicest possible way to waive his no-trade clause so Toronto can begin the long task of rebuilding its rotted vessel.
No one knows what Sundin will say when this offer is presented to him, but the Leafs’ course of action should be very clear if he maintains his stated position that he has no intention of leaving Toronto.
First, Fletcher should immediately strip Sundin of the captain’s “C”. Then, Fletcher should make it very clear he will not re-sign the unrestricted free agent this summer or strongly recommend to the next full-time GM that Sundin not be re-signed.
After all, what kind of role model is Sundin if he refuses to commit the ultimate act of leadership by helping the team he professes to love get better?
from Bruce MacLeod of Red Wings Corner,
Tonight will be spent as most Red Wings fans will, wondering what tomorrow morning’s MRI would reveal about Nicklas Lidstrom’s ailing right knee. Lidstrom was knocked woozy, Monday in Denver, when Avalanche forward Ian Laperriere ran the Detroit captain hard into the boards. Laperriere’s forearm landed on Lidstrom’s jaw and the defenseman bounced back off the boards.
(That was a dirty hit, by the way. Any time a player gets a forearms up on another player’s jaw and slams him against the boards, it’s dirty. It might have been accidental, but Laperriere sure didn’t act like it was.)
Abel to Yzerman has much more on the Lidstrom talk…
from David Kolb at Game On,
It always seems like there is something going on with Avery in the extracurricular realm; however, in-game he’s been the Rangers most important and effective player both down the stretch last year and now during the current playoff push
This is why in this space I will chronicle Avery’s game-to-game activity, be it zany or just productive, from this day until the Rangers either win the Cup, or get eliminated from the playoffs.
Every time he hits the ice, his legs are moving. There’s no standing around or loafing, if you will. His defensive coverage is one of the most overlooked aspects of his game, while on offense he has been nothing less than a sparkplug for the Rangers.
from Stan Fischler at the Hockey Journal,
If a talent such as Simon Gagne suffers three concussions in one season – among many other big-leaguers similarly suffering, you know that the head wound situation sadly has become epidemic – with no solution in sight. Boston’s Patrice Bergeron and Andrew Alberts are a couple of other victims.
Interesting Idea Dep’t. In the next CBA, why doesn’t the NHL itself just abolish the “no-trade” clause in contracts? …
much more from the Maven…
from Lightning Strikes,
Feaster isn’t trading Vinny Lecavalier. He probably wants to keep Boyle. To do that, he has to cut salary somewhere. Richards has underperformed, Forsberg seems out of the equation, so it seems logical Feaster wants to see what Richards’ market is like before deciding if he can sign Boyle, because if Tampa Bay can be out from under Richards’ salary, that makes Boyle’s contract doable.
As we have said, there are a lot of moving parts here, including how the Lightning does Wednesday and Thursday in what will be a difficult back-to-back against the Sabres and Islanders.
From Pat Hickey at The Gazette,
The question now is whether to keep Huet or put him on the block. He’s eligible to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1 and the Canadiens run the risk of losing him without compensation.
That’s a risk they should take. While Price has demonstrated why he’s the Canadiens’ hope for a bright future and Jaroslav Halak is playing well in Hamilton, the Habs need all their resources if they hope to make a run in the playoffs. It’s a bigger risk if they go into the post-season with a pair of goaltenders with no NHL playoff experience.
from NHL.com writer Dan Rosen at NHL Connect,
I thought it was great to see George McPhee and Don Maloney chatting for close to 30 minutes during lunch. “Trying to make a trade,” Maloney joked to me. Probably not considering both teams are in a similar situation with young players and on the cusp of the playoffs. Still, good fodder.
I thought it was great to see Ken Holland walk out of the lunch area with Toronto interim GM Cliff Fletcher. “So, how’s it going?” Holland asked.
read on... Now more rumors can be created…
The Top 10 goals of the week in a little over 6 minutes.
from John Buccigross at ESPN,
If you canvassed the NHL standings at the start of this week, you could make a case (albeit some are a bit flimsy) that every team except the Los Angeles Kings has at least a dream of going on a big run and finishing in the playoff money.
There are three reasons for this:...
3. Evolution of the “almost-foolproof draft era” and depth of front-office talent…
There are only nine more teams than there were during the 1979-80 season, but there are probably 90 people better qualified and trained to run an organization. The NHL is deep in talent on and off the ice and the bunched-up standings should be a yearly occurrence. That’s the point.
from Naples News,
So will something happen this year to change the size of the equipment?
“I’m not telling you that it will,” said Colin Campbell, NHL vice president and director hockey operations. “It needs a buy-in by our GMs and our players, particularly the goaltenders.”
“We’re tired of hearing about it ... we understand it all comes down to wanting to win, but we have to do something when you’re illegal.”
Outside of trades and goaltender equipment, other issues discussed at Tuesday’s meetings involved relations with other hockey leagues and potential rule changes.
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 email@example.com