Kukla's Korner Hockey
NEW YORK (March 1, 2007)—The National Hockey League posted its strongest aggregate February attendance ever as more than 3.2 million fans, a record total for the month, attended the 187 games. The per-game average of 17,146, which represented 92.4% of capacity, was the highest for February in a non-Olympic year (minimum 100 games).
League-wide average attendance has increased month by month in 2006-07: 16,537 in October, 16,538 in November, 16,850 in December, 17,075 in January and 17,146 in February.
From Steven Lienert at The Phanatic Magazine,
And there was. And it was awesome. And if there’s a God, the Sabres and Senators will meet in a seven-game bloodbath for the Eastern Conference crown.
Because that’s what hockey needs. It’s the only sport where, if you fight, they put you in a little box for five minutes to cool down.
In baseball, if you fight, you’re kicked out of the game and suspended. In basketball, not only do you not know how to fight, the fans will kick your ass, you’ll get kicked out of the game, you’ll get made fun of on television and you’ll get suspended.
Fighting in football is just dumb because everybody wears helmets. Duh. And if you’re one of those guys that takes his helmet off during an altercation, you deserve what you get. But I digress.
from the LA Times,
General Manager Brian Burke has said that he wants his bottom six forwards to display the “requisite level of pugnacity, truculence, belligerence, hostility and testosterone.” Brad May fits that blueprint down to the last syllable….
n May, Burke said he believes his true value will be measured in the postseason.
“Your toughness has to play in the playoffs and Brad May can do that,” Burke said. “He’s done that for me in the past.”
read on (reg. req.)
Thanks to all of the KK readers, KK experienced a super month.
Take a look at the day before the trade deadlline and the day of, simply amazing and who said hockey is fading?
KK statistics for previous month’s start here...
The National Hockey League announced today the Anaheim Ducks and Los Angeles Kings will open the 2007-08 NHL regular season in London, England at Europe’s most state-of-the art entertainment venue, the O2 Arena.
“Our commitment to grow the game globally has never been stronger,” said NHL Deputy Commissioner, Bill Daly. “The NHL is extremely proud to be represented in London by two great hockey organizations in the Ducks and Kings as well as to be recording NHL history at such a fantastic facility in the 02.”
After three successful Game One events in Japan in 1997, 1998 and 2000, NHL Premiere will mark the first time the NHL will have played regular-season games in Europe.
The NHL’s history overseas goes back a long way. Below is a list of NHL games played in Europe and Japan since 1938, with various details about each event.
From Tony Gallagher at The Province,
It’s the NHL’s version of Night of the Living Dead. There’s one tonight at GM place, in fact.
We speak here of the Phoenix Coyotes, one of the legion of teams that have pulled the pin and now are officially going through the motions until the season ends.
And thanks to the fact that the league moved up the trading deadline this season, we have an additional two-weeks-plus of these pillaged teams in NHL rinks looking like the Milwaukee Brewers in September, all the while charging regular rates for tickets.
Of course, nobody in any of these organizations will ever admit they’re a group of zombies wandering about.
from Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun,
Did we mention respectable? First order of business for Sportsnet has to be getting rid of “blogger” Eklund who was billed as an expert but instead brought down the credibility which the network’s legitimate pros offered.
Bad enough that Mr. Eklund appeared to be guessing most of the time. Worse that he almost always guessed wrong.
more on Sportsnet…
from the Chicago Tribune,
Matt Keator, Handzus’ agent, said he and his client have had “initial discussions” with Tallon regarding a new contract, but the Handzus camp seems content to wait to see how a number of matters play out.
“[Handzus] is still assessing how his knee is feeling, which is better every day, and we’re still assessing where the organization is headed,” Keator said.
Keator said Handzus likes Chicago and the Hawks have treated him very well.
“There’s a chance he will re-sign, but that’s for a later date,” Keator said.
from the Montreal Gazette,
“I’m not sure whether the Canadiens will want to keep me, but I want to talk to them when the season is over,” Souray said after the Canadiens’ 4-0 loss to the Rangers Tuesday night.
There has been speculation Souray wants to play on the West Coast to be closer to his daughter, who lives with Souray’s estranged wife, Angelica Bridges.
Souray said he and Bridges have a cordial relationship and have discussed living in Montreal should he stay here. He said their relationship is complicated by the fact Bridges is expecting the couple’s second child in May.
from Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star,
It is not a workout for the faint of heart, a category into which Karel Pilar was once exiled.
It is purposeful. Slicing sounds, the hard carving of ice, fill the empty arena when things are going well. A staccato curse echoes to the rafters when they aren’t.
Comebacks are tough business. Particularly from coronary problems that, logic seemed to dictate, ended a promising career before it had found its rhythm.
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