Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Good Fit For Islanders #1

from Alan Hahn of Newsday,

The Islanders continued the trend of being the NHL's melting-pot franchise when they selected right wing Kyle Okposo with the seventh overall pick in Saturday's NHL draft. Okposo (pronounced o-POS-o; the "k" is silent) is the son of a Nigerian father and white mother. His father, Kome, came to the United States in 1975 to attend college. He said he never even saw ice until he attended a hockey game at the University of Wisconsin-Superior.

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Browsing the web this morning, I read a story about the Boston Red Sox. At the bottom of the story I read this-

Bruins' top draft pick Phil Kessell poses with team director of amateur scouting Scott Bradley, left, and another unidentified team official after being the fifth overall pick at the NHL Entry Draft in Vancouver Saturday.
It appears this story was the print version, so there is no picture available; which does happen occasionally while reading web stories. But I had a nice chuckle reading another unidentified team official and thought to myself- Aren't they all these days? Boston continues to amaze me with the way the front office runs, or doesn't run.

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A Five Hour Recap

from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,

Here’s a running diary of how the early part of the day went down: 1:00 p.m. – Arrive at GM Place two hours prior to start of draft, in preparation for rumored frenzy of wheeling and dealing. 2:00 – Combined totals of wheels and deals so far: 0. 2:30 – ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ… 3:11 – First signs of life from GM Place’s PA announcer – who, judging by the sound quality from ice level, is a blood relative of Charlie Brown’s teacher.

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Chicago Interested In Pronger

via the Northwest Herald,

Tallon, one of several GMs interested in acquiring Edmonton defenseman Chris Pronger, said he engaged in trade talks with Oilers vice president and general manager Kevin Lowe, but as of late Saturday, a deal could not be made. Tallon said Lowe initially was interested in a package deal, including the Hawks' third overall pick, which the Hawks used to select forward Jonathan Toews. "Kevin and I talked and he said he would keep me in the mix," Tallon said. "There is interest."

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Vancouver Hosts The Draft

from the Columbus Dispatch,

For eight hours yesterday, anybody who’s anybody in the world of professional hockey congregated in GM Place for the 2006 NHL entry draft. So did a lot of other people. Outside, it was sunny, breezy and in the mid-70s, and this city between ocean and mountain provides views like no other in North America. It wasn’t easy to draw folks inside, but this is Canada. This is hockey, and this is the entry draft
continued And Columbus Host the NHL Draft in 2007 Also from the Columbus Dispatch,
"I would imagine Columbus is very similar to our market, in that it isn’t a traditional hockey market. It isn’t a hockey destination, per se," said Nashville Predators General Manager David Poile, whose city and club hosted the 2003 draft in Gaylord Entertainment Center. "But for those few days, it’s a chance to really show off your city, your market. And when they leave, many of them view your town in a different way. "The residual effect has been noticeable for us in Nashville, absolutely. I’ve had people come up to me a few years down the road, people from around the league, tell me what a great time they had at the draft in Nashville."
read on

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Pronger & Jagr Talk

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

Slap Shots has learned that Lowe asked Florida GM Mike Keenan for 23-year-old defenseman Jay Bouwmeester, 21-year-old center Nathan Horton and the 10th-overall pick in yesterday's draft for Pronger, who will turn 32 in October. We're told that Phoenix, in the mix for Todd Bertuzzi before he went to the Panthers, is pitching hard for Pronger, who has four years remaining at $6.25M on his contract. Senators could enter into the bidding if unable to satisfactorily complete negotiations with both Zdeno Chara and Wade Redden. Maple Leafs are also trying to find a way to somehow make it happen. Somehow, 32 of the 129 members of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association who cast ballots for this year's awards - many after the first two games of the playoffs, but more on that later - did not vote for Jagr as one of the two most valuable players in the league. That essentially accounts for a full quarter of the electorate. Perhaps these individuals were all too busy grinding an axe somewhere.
read on (reg. req.)...more on Jagr...

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Did And Did Not Happen

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

The Boston Bruins have interviewed former Detroit coach Dave Lewis and former Toronto coach Pat Quinn about their head coaching job. The problem is that the post is still occupied, at least technically, by Mike Sullivan. Is it any wonder players and agents view Boston as a destination of last resort because it has a reputation as a place with little regard for its people? ...The other rumor circulating had the Senators offering Martin Havlat, due to become an unrestricted free agent next summer, for Toskala. Neither deal materialized.
much more talk from Vancouver...

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Wrapping Up Tonight

It is still early in Vancouver so some trades could happen tonight. I am heading to dreamworld but some things to remember for the next few days. Kevin Lowe was just on NHL Network and stated they are going to take their time in dealing with Pronger. They are entertaining offers but have some time on their side. Also, a few players must be traded by June 26th or a no-trade clause kicks in, thereby allowing the player to decide if he wants to go to a certain team. I know Martin St. Louis has this clause and a few others I cannot think of right now.

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Live Streaming

Since OLN stopped broadcasting at 9pm, you can now watch the stream via the NHL Network...

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Wings Feel Uncomfortable…

...Drafting in the 1st round, trade down with Phoenix to get the 41st and 47th pick.

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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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