Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Pierre LeBrun of the CP via Slam,
The NHL has come out of last year's lockout with a new collective bargaining agreement, a new game and now new contenders. "Interesting, exciting and not totally unexpected," NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said Thursday of the remaining Stanley Cup contenders. "The system has created the type of competitive balance that we envisioned," he added from New York. On Nov. 30, 2004, the commissioner stood in front of the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce and told the city's business people and Oilers fans that the lockout would be worth it. "I promise we will get you what you need and most importantly, what you deserve," Bettman said that day. The payoff didn't take long. The Oilers are in the final four, for the first time since 1992.more
from Barry Melrose of ESPN,
The conference finals are set, and while some of you might be skeptical about the matchups, believe me when I say that they will be fun to watch. Right now, I am going with the Hurricanes and Oilers in the Stanley Cup final. You have to have at least one Canadian team playing for the Cup!continued
from Rick Jeanneret of MSG Network,
This series is going to come down to goaltending. How many times do you hear somebody say that? But I think, in the end, the series probably will come down to the play of Ryan Miller and Cam Ward because both clubs are a mirror image of one another. I mean, this can be one heck of a series and I'm sure it'll be gung-ho, fire wagon hockey all the way. This is sure to be a hard-fought series and, boy, would it bring the city of Buffalo to a frenzy if the Sabres can move on to the Cup Finals. If the Sabres were to win the Stanley Cup, I think it'd mean more to the team and to the area for its psyche more than anything else. Economically, things haven't been so great in Western New York and Buffalo.more
Scott Burnside of ESPN breaks down both conference finals. Eastern:
Forget the small-market/miniscule television ratings angle of this series. If ever there was a series designed to sell the new NHL, this is it. Even the most casual of fans can expect to be blown away by the speed and derring-do of the Buffalo Sabres and Carolina Hurricanes.Western:
Let's just say this about the Western Conference final between the Edmonton Oilers and Anaheim Mighty Ducks -- better hope they have double, reinforced boards because they're in for a workout.
This morning, OLN has posted the Conference Finals schedule. No high definition games are listed and INHD has nothing either. Hopefully this is just a mistake and they plan on adding a few HD games for the NHL fans. added 12:29pm, Hockey Fights has the complete release from OLN and this is included:
During the conference finals, which will take place from May 19-June 1, the network will present both series, anywhere between 7 and 13 games, depending on series outcomes. OLN’s Stanley Cup coverage will culminate with the first two games of the Stanley Cup Final on June 5 and June 7. The network will also take advantage of hi-definition technology, presenting both series in the conference finals in HD.
from New York Business,
Job: Robert Dixon, senior director of financial reporting for the National Hockey League, since March. Job One: Close the NHL's 2005 fiscal year books while looking for ways to streamline the league's reporting and accounting systems. Besides cutting revenues and alienating fans, the lockout that melted last year's hockey season led some finance staffers to leave the league, taking with them some of the historical financial data and system management knowledge stored in their heads rather than in computers or on paper. Mr. Dixon is charged with setting up systems and leaving documentation to ensure that never happens again.read on
The insert team name here will get the first shot at signing insert player name for the 2006-07 season. However, if the numbers don't add up, his agent cautioned, the player has the right to look elsewhere in the National Hockey League for employment. The player's agent, said he and his client would listen to the insert latest team here first simply out of courtesy and mutual respect. "We're not the type of people who would say, 'We'll talk to you on July 1,' " the agent said. "[Player] has enjoyed his time there, they've done a good job over the last few years developing the team, and it's part of the business to be respectful to them. Absolutely we'll talk to them first." This covers about 99% of all the UFAs, if anything unique comes up, I will post it.
from Buffalo Business First,
Just two days before the Buffalo Sabres are to start play in the third round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, the possibility exists that many TV viewers the local market will be shut out of some games. The National Hockey League released its television schedule for the conference finals late Wednesday night. The first game of the Buffalo-Carolina Hurricanes Eastern Conference final will be broadcast on NBC at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 20. All other games in the best-of-7 series are to be carried on OLN, the NHL's cable TV partner in the U.S. OLN, or Outdoor Life Network, however, is carried on Adelphia Communications Corp.'s digital tier, which costs subscribers more per month than basic or expanded basic cable service, and is not nearly as popular. The exact number of subscribers receiving OLN in the Buffalo area is not known.continued update 4:02pm,
After a morning of negotiations, Adelphia said Thursday the remaining games in the series will be carried on channel 71, which is part of the company's "classic" package. That same package is available to all subscribers who receive MSG Network, the Sabres' main cable outlet. Terms of the agreement with OLN were not disclosed. "We know how important the Sabres are to the community so it was absolutely essential to be able to provide our customers the opportunity to watch all the games," said Tom Haywood, vice president of operations for Adelphia. "We also did not want to leave to chance the fact that CBC could change its schedule at any time so we decided to air all of the games on Channel 71 regardless of their schedule."
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
Somewhere between the crowning of the last Stanley Cup champion and today, the NHL was turned upside down. That the next NHL champion will come from a Final Four consisting of the Edmonton Oilers, Anaheim Mighty Ducks, Carolina Hurricanes and Buffalo Sabres is, in itself, evidence of the massive change that has affected the 89-year-old hockey institution that is the NHL. Two years ago, at the conclusion of the last NHL regular season that preceded the historic lockout, none of those four clubs were even part of the post-season.read on
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