Kukla's Korner Hockey
No NHL games tonight, so why not sit back and catch the AHL ASG?
Check out the TV, web and radio broadcast schedule. Broadcast begins at 7:00pm ET tonight.
from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,
On the heels of the Dion Phaneuf All-Star Love-in, let’s get one thing straight about the contract the Calgary Flames defenceman will eventually sign for employment next year.
If indeed he is going to remain in Calgary, he will have to leave money on the table. A ton of it.
Thanks to Kevin Lowe’s desperate attempts to throw money away by way of offer sheets to restricted free agents, today’s NHL is such Phaneuf would certainly attract open market offers this summer well over the $7 million a year captain Jarome Iginla makes.
continued and more NHL talk…
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
Every year the game is played and every year the same questions are asked. What can be done to make it more competitive? What can be done to make it more relevant? What can be done to make it more like a real NHL game?
And here’s the answer. Nothing. There’s nothing that can be done; nothing that will turn the all-star game into a showcase event that captures hockey’s best qualities.
You can hope for some speed and skill and a close, competitive affair, but you can’t replicate those things that make the sport attractive.
Once you accept this, you are free to appreciate this affair for what it is and even revel in its unique qualities.
from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,
Unfortunately, there are times when the city in general, and the Blue Jackets in particular, are not held in any esteem.
The NHL All-Star Weekend provided a case in point. First, goaltender Pascal Leclaire was left off the Western Conference team. Then, Rick Nash was denied the MVP award. Conspiracy? I can’t say there isn’t.
via the Detroit News,
Wings general manager Ken Holland , who is in Binghamton, N.Y., for tonight’s American Hockey League All-Star Game, said Sunday the team has not reached any agreement with Swedish prospect Fabian Brunnstrom.
“We’ve made our pitch,” Holland said. “My understanding is he’s going through his options and trying to make a decision on where he wants to play. The teams have made their offers, so it’s now really in his hands.”
This Brunnstrom is reminding me more and more of Sidd Finch...
from the Globe and Mail,
The stick, jointly owned by Brown and siblings Brydon and Sheila, was left by their late father, Charles, with nary a word as to its significance.
“Dad never talked about it,” said Brown, who as a youth played against a number of future pros.
The surprisingly well-preserved stick, which lay idle in Brown’s basement for years, bears the signatures of many hockey greats. Brown and his brother began to research the names and made an amazing discovery — all of them had participated in the first unofficial NHL all-star game in February of 1934.
The game took place in Toronto and served as a benefit for Ace Bailey of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Bailey was felled by Eddie Shore of the Boston Bruins in a game at Boston Garden in December of 1933 and never played again.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
Panthers GM Jacques Martin has been busy working the phones. He’s trying to move: D Branislav Mezei and RW Radek Dvorak. Florida officials can deny it all they want, but league executives insists that C Olli Jokinen could be moved.
more rumor talk and NHL notes…
Now, I wonder what league executive(s) he is referring to? The NHL list 5 people as Executives… Gary B. Bettman, William Daly, Colin Campbell, Craig Harnett (Sr. Exec. VP & CFO) and Debbie Jordan (VP Administration,Human Resources & Exec. Asst. to the Commissioner).
Since Garrioch writes “league executives insist…”, that means more than one, well, you decide which out of the above group who is insisting Jokinen “could” be moved. I don’t really know how you insist someone could be moved, but Bruce wrote it, now it is our job to decide where this leak could have come from.
My opinion, Garrioch could have talked to someone else who really are not league executives.
from Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News,
Bettman deserves a good share of praise for fixing the game, whether it was his own doing or hiring the right people around him to get it right. It’s half the battle. Bill Daly, second in command, has given him a major boost. Both are intelligent visionaries who have become better peer listeners.
The league has done a much better job marketing its players, which is to say it’s making a concerted effort….
By now, you must be wondering if Bettman bought me a beer or bailed me out of jail over the weekend. Over the past decade, there were times I couldn’t imagine giving him credit for being 5-foot-6, let alone leading hockey from the ruins.
For all of his flaws, Bettman’s biggest over the years has been connecting with the people. He has a way of alienating fans with selfrighteous speeches, legalese and stretched truths that made people question whether he had a genuine bone on his body. Predictably, he was booed after the game Sunday.
Quotes from some of the players involved in the ASG…
Q. Can you talk about the showcase aspect of this game and how it’s important to the league?
JAROME IGINLA: Well, yeah, the league has a lot of talent right now. They always do. But it’s a real nice wave of young players coming in. You could see it tonight. Every year there seems to be more and more guys that are ready to step right in. You know, it’s something that the speed of the game has gotten to play the game, it’s a lot more enjoyable. It’s always fun, but I think the speed and the lack of hooking and all of that has really improved the game.
To watch it I find is more fun, too.
from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution,
Nobody really remembers who wins the NHL All-Star game, but the Stanley Cup? That’s etched for eternity. So who, besides their own team, do some of the All-Stars think is the favorite to win it all this season? Judging by an informal poll, it will be either Detroit or Anaheim.
Manny Legace, St. Louis goalie: “Obviously, Detroit. Every year. Top to bottom, they’re just solid. The goaltending is unbelievable. It’s going to be a scary team.”
Staal, Carolina forward: “I can’t pick anybody besides us, it would jinx so. So I say Carolina.”
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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.
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