Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

More Teaching For Hitch

from George Johnson at ESPN,

This is, after all, a man capable of teaching Brett Hull that there are, as rumored, two ends to an ice hockey rink, a task rivaling Columbus convincing the Spanish court that man could not sail off the edge of the world. A man who transformed styling-mousse Mike Modano from all flash and tinsel into a trustworthy two-way player. And now, Ken Hitchcock has taken on arguably his most taxing assignment yet: the enigmatic Rick Nash. "Great players," preaches Hitchcock with the fervor of a tent evangelist in mid-rant, "do more than score goals."
read on

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Challenge Your Friends

from Exponentia,

Exponentia and the National Hockey League (NHL) today announced the signing of a multi-year rights deal to provide live mobile interactivity for fans of NHL action across North America. Exponentia's mobile game PlayAction enables NHL fans to make live predictions via their mobile phone from wherever they are; whether at home; at the sports bar; or at the game. Players challenge their friends, create their own leagues and compete for team jerseys and other great prizes.

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Yzerman Sitting Back And Watching

from Pierre Lebrun of the CP via the CBC,

Steve Yzerman is at peace. He made the right decision when he called it quits on a sensational 20-year playing career. "I have no regret at all," Yzerman said in an interview with The Canadian Press. "The last couple of years was a struggle just to get out there. I put a lot of effort in getting ready to play. To me, I've almost found it a relief to not have to physically try and keep up because it was becoming very difficult for me to do that. "I'm very happy with my decision." So happy that when he watches his team play these days, in his new front-office role as team vice-president, it feels right. "I've really enjoyed watching hockey games, moreso than maybe I expected," Yzerman said.

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Lack Of Coverage

from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,

If attendance at the board of governors meetings this week is any indication, the National Hockey League is still out in the cold when it comes to U.S. media attention. There are only a handful of reporters at the meetings, even though for the second year in succession there was some actual news. It was the same news as last year – the salary cap is going up – but it was significant nonetheless. However, there was only one reporter from a U.S. media organization there to chronicle this on Monday. The only found-ins were yours truly, a Canadian reporter for ESPN.com., the Canadian Press and representatives from the three Canadian sports television networks.

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Bruins Won’t Release Kessel For WJC

via Darren Dreger at TSN,

Team USA will announce its IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship roster tonight, however Phil Kessel's name will not be on the list. Sources tell TSN the Boston Bruins have informed USA Hockey that Kessel will not be released for the upcoming Championship.

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Dump Versus

from Ted Montgomery at USA TODAY,

•The NHL undoubtedly believes that being the first major pro sport to make available its highlight video clips on YouTube will solve the league's marketing issues. Bettman and company probably think scores of potential fans will accidentally stumble across the NHL on YouTube. From my experience, people use YouTube to look for something specific and are unlikely to view something they are not interested in. It's a nice idea, but it doesn't begin to answer the question of why the NHL is way, way down the list of spectator-friendly sports. Which brings us to… • So the Outdoor Life Network (OLN) has changed its identity to Versus. Pray to whatever god you care to that the NHL takes this limping dog of a "national TV contract" and puts it out of its misery immediately after the current season ends.
read on and more topics from Ted include the Wings and the Northeast Division...

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Let More Teams In

from Dan Barnes of the Edmonton Journal,

The NHL should feel free to monkey with its playoff format. Add four teams, give division leaders a bye through an abbreviated first round and re-seed after each subsequent round. Hey, why fine tune when you can fiddle on a grand scale? OK, you and I both know that's not going to happen when governors meet today in Florida to discuss major changes to the regular-season schedule and a minor tweaking of the post-season format. But consider the merits.

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Sneaky Trick

from Mike Chen's Hockey Blog,

Well, after some digging around, I figured out a way around this. So, fellow hockey fan, if your favorite team is blacked out in your area on TV and online, don't fear -- you can still watch it.
read on

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Life Changes For Commodore

from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,

A lot has changed for Mike Commodore since the Flames' 2004 playoff run when the awkward-skating giant became the most popular eighth defenceman in NHL lore. One thing that hasn't is his lid, which will soon start sprouting orange, Chia-like properties a la Ogie Oglethorpe. "I have to. I think I'd get traded if I don't grow my hair," said the 27-year-old blueliner, wearing a grin that could be spotted at nightclubs all over town during the Flames' run. "Honestly. I could show up to camp in any condition and I could have the worst game but as long as I grow my hair out, (the fans) are happy. It's an every year thing now."

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Parrish Must Impress

from the Star Tribune,

Two months into the first season of Mark Parrish's tenure with his hometown Wild, it's clear the veteran winger is not in Jacques Lemaire's good graces. Look no further than the six-time 20-goal scorer's ice time, which ranks behind 255 NHL forwards. But Saturday night, Parrish managed to enter the coach's doghouse by actually scoring a goal.

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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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