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Deal For Kesler Was Close

from the Province,

Dave Nonis expected to fly to the NHL board of governors meetings today in Chicago with the confidence that his hockey house was in financial order. Then Bob Clarke messed it up. Now Nonis has to decide whether to spend $1 million US to clean it. Clarke, the aggressive Philadelphia Flyers general manager, signed restricted free agent Vancouver Canucks centre Ryan Kesler to a one-year offer sheet of $1.9 million US Tuesday. It came as Nonis and agent Kurt Overhardt were close to finalizing a two-year extension for Kesler, who didn't participate in an informal skate with Canuck veterans.
continued added 8:26am, also from Tony Gallagher of the Province,
The first words out of most mouths around the NHL upon learning of Philadelphia's offer sheet to Ryan Kesler on Tuesday surely were: "It's about time." Hard to believe it's taken a team this long to figure out the advantages of making contract offers to the good young players, and hard to believe somebody started with a player coming off a year as humdrum as that of Kesler.

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Ruutu Talks Improve

from the Chicago Tribune,

Blackhawks general manager Dale Tallon and the agent for winger Tuomo Ruutu, Chicago-based Bill Zito, had another round of negotiations on a new contract Tuesday, with Zito saying progress had been made. Zito and Ruutu, who is still in his native Finland, were to discuss two offers, a one-year deal and a two-year deal, with Zito and Tallon speaking again either late Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. If Ruutu accepts one of the Hawks' offers, he likely will be in Chicago in time for the start of training camp Thursday at the United Center. "I always expected to get something done," Zito said. "I would be really surprised if we can't."

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Primeau Expected To Retire

from the Philadelphia Inquirer,

Flyers captain Keith Primeau is expected to announce his retirement before the end of the week, the player confirmed today. "I've had those discussions with my wife and I will have something more to say about it either tomorrow or Thursday," Primeau said. "I have not talked to the club since last week. I had been looking to get myself back into a position to play."

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Panthers Settle Keenan Contract

from TSN,

Mike Keenan and the Florida Panthers have found a way to part peacefully, although it took several days for the two sides to get to this point. ''I am pleased to report that I have resolved all outstanding issues with the Florida Panthers relating to my employment and my departure on an amicable basis,'' Keenan told TSN. The two sides have agreed on a settlement that satisfies the balance of his recently terminated contract.

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Savard And Dryden’s Numbers Head To Habs’ Rafters

from RDS (translated):

RDS learned that the Canadiens will retire the jerseys of Serge Savard (18) and Ken Dryden (29) this season. The whole will be confirmed in press conference Wednesday.

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Oilers Re-sign Lupul

via the AP,

The Edmonton Oilers re-signed winger Joffrey Lupul for a contract worth about $6.9 million over three years.

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All Walkom

from the New England Hockey Journal, In a recent interview, Walkom addressed the following issues:

YOUNGER AND OLDER REFEREES “Over time we gained an awful lot of experience with our four-man system. If there were complaints that the younger referees were overzealous calling penalties as opposed to the seasoned veteran referees, who were calling less penalties, I don’t know if there’s a real basis for such a claim. Sometimes we would have the under-calling of a game and other times we had over-calling of games. But I’m not splitting the referees up into groups.”
many more topics...good read...

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What Is Going On

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Just because a television station runs a Three Stooges marathon doesn't mean the program director is a genius. It just means he has more Three Stooges tapes than he knows what to do with. And while we don't necessarily mean to draw a comparison between DiPietro and the comedic trio, there is certainly an element of the slapstick when it comes to this deal and this franchise. "It means the owner is a moron," one NHL executive told ESPN.com Tuesday. "It makes no sense. This is all about Charles Wang's ego." The most salient point in this tragic-comedy is that DiPietro simply isn't that good a goalie.
more added 6:30pm, from Stan Fischler of MSG Network,
Wouldn’t you like to be Rick DiPietro today? Or any day, for that matter, for the next 15 years. Whoosh! What a deal this 24-year-old (25 next week) goalkeeper has obtained from Islanders owner, Charles Wang. Starting when DP The Dauntless exhales, he will be cruising on a 15-year $67.5 million deal that should be able to pay his rent at $4.5 million a year – with some change for the chamber maid.

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First Offer Sheet

from TSN,

It was bound to happen. One NHL general manager taking advantage of another under the rules of a hard cap in the new NHL. Sources tell TSN the Philadelphia Flyers have signed 22-year old forward Ryan Kesler to an offer sheet worth $1.9 million for one year.
update 6:14pm, The same link is now updated stating TSN has learned the Canucks will match the offer.

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Anyone Up For A Road Trip

The Acid Queen points out...

In the wake of that announcement (Kaberle injury), a new addition was made to the training camp roster: Unsigned free agent Cale Hulse, late of the Calgary Flames and third husband of B-movie starlet and ex-Baywatch bimbette (not to mention Playboy centerfold) Gena Lee Nolin.

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com


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