Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bob Ford at the Philadelphia Inquirer,
The losing streak has taken the Flyers from first place to last place in the Atlantic Division and has taken them entirely out of the playoff seeding in the Eastern Conference. Where they go from here is unknown. The trading deadline is Tuesday, and general manager Paul Holmgren couldn’t be blamed for taking advantage of it.
With Simon Gagne out for the season, the Flyers have extra money available for salaries, but that isn’t so easy, either. Every team looking for players is also looking for wingers and defensemen, just like the injury-riddled Flyers. They are loath to offer any of their younger players in trade, although there is an increasing sense that, if they do, it could be Jeff Carter who is moved.
more... In my opinion, the goaltending in Philly has been average at best, get better goaltending, the team gets better.
Mats Sundin has stated he does not want to leave Toronto, over and over again. So why this?
from Darren Drager of TSN,
Sources tell TSN that Toronto Maple Leafs interim general manager Cliff Fletcher and captain Mats Sundin met on Thursday to discuss his future with the team.
It’s believed Fletcher asked Sundin for a list of teams he would consider playing for, although the Leafs GM stopped short of officially asking him to waive his no-trade clause.
from the Edmonton Sun,
Dwayne Roloson hasn’t come right out and asked for a trade, but he’s already moved his family out of town and says if a choice has to be made between sitting in Edmonton and playing somewhere else, there’s no choice to be made.
At some point, and he’s been at that point for some time, the need to play outweighs a guy’s fondness for a city and an organization.
“Definitely,” said Roloson, who hasn’t played a game in 21 days, and isn’t scheduled to start tonight in Dallas. “It’s outweighs it big time.”
from the Tampa Tribune,
If Columbus is considered to be among the front-runners for Richards, then the presence of two Blue Jackets scouts, including the team’s director of player personnel, Don Boyd, will only fuel that speculation.
At the same time, the team continues to discuss a contract extension with D Dan Boyle, although there is no progress to report. If terms of a new contract cannot be agreed upon before Tuesday, it is widely known that the Lightning will explore trading him rather than risk losing him to free agency with any type of compensation.
Other players believed to be in play on the trade market include LW Vinny Prospal, D Filip Kuba, C Chris Gratton and possibly LW Jan Hlavac and G Johan Holmqvist.
Who gets traded, who do you want to get and give-up?
Today you are the hockey expert, let your views be known on the upcoming trade deadline moves.
Is you team still in the playoff race or is it time to be a seller? If your team is considered a lock to be playing in mid-April, do you need to get stronger or stand pat?
Let KK readers and myself know what your strategy is for the next few days!
from the Globe and Mail,
Graeme Roustan is an admitted hockey nut who has always been on the margins of the sport, first as a kid playing on the outdoor rinks of Montreal and then as an adult running a U.S. company that builds and equips indoor ice rinks.
He also believes what sporting goods giant Nike Inc. doesn’t: That the game he loves has plenty of room to grow and produce big profits for equipment suppliers.
Now, the 47-year-old Canadian expatriate has a chance to prove it after teaming up with private equity firm Kohlberg & Co. in a $200-million (U.S.) cash deal for Nike’s hockey subsidiary.
from the Toronto Star,
TSN is boasting of having 20 ``insiders” to dissect trades and rumours. Joining the usual suspects are former Leafs GM John Ferguson Jr.
Sportsnet will cover things more traditionally this year, including doing some of the show from Vancouver. It has added NHL types Doug MacLean, Keith Primeau and Brian Lawton.
The Score will focus on viewers, with call-in and email segments. Former Leaf Mike Johnson has been added.
It all seems a bit much, but there is demand. Last year, TSN was the big winner, averaging 150,000 viewers over a paltry eight hours – more than four times what it normally draws at that time. And that represented the lowest ratings since 2002.
Update 9:26pm ET: More analysis on the trade deadline TV coverage in Canada from William Houston at the Globe & Mail.
from Bill Lankhof of the Toronto Sun,
When the Maple Leafs missed the playoffs last year it was the closest thing to a national disaster to hit Toronto since Mel Lastman spotted a snowflake over North York.
But even that does not come close to the travesty and abuse of a public trust being perpetrated by this season’s Maple Leafs, who are closing in on becoming the first NHL team in Toronto to miss the playoffs three consecutive years since 1927-28.
How embarrassing was that? Don’t know, but they changed the name from St. Patrick’s to Maple Leafs. These days fans just walk around with paper bags on their heads.
from the News & Observer,
There’s only one problem with Rod Brind’Amour’s recovery from knee surgery, as far as his father is concerned: holding him back.
“He got operated Friday afternoon. Saturday morning at 7:30, he’s lying on the floor in his bedroom and he’s lifting 55-pound weights. He’s got his leg up on a chair,” Bob Brind’Amour said before the Carolina Hurricanes’ 5-3 win over the Atlanta Thrashers on Thursday. “I went up there and said, ‘You idiot. What are you doing?’ He’s so dedicated. He knows his body, but in this case he’s got to tone it down a bit.”
thanks to a KK reader for the pointer…
from Greg Logan of Newsday,
Simon was booed by a segment of the crowd when he took his first couple of shifts in the first period, and there was no discernible applause to counter that negative reaction….
“For me to be effective and play the way I can, I have to be in the moment and focus on each game, each shift,” Simon said. “I can’t control what other people think. All I can do is work hard and play hard.”
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