Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Pronger Returns to St. Louis

from Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

Chris Pronger is back in town, with the visiting Edmonton Oilers. The Blues sit in last place in the entire NHL. The sale of the franchise drags on, with no guarantee of a positive resolution. So the Post-Dispatch asked the obvious question: Was dealing Pronger to the Oilers for defensemen Eric Brewer, Jeff Woywitka and Doug Lynch the right decision? Our answer: Yes, but.

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Not Attending The Games

Anyone else surprised by the attendance at the Rangers/Devils game last night? Attendance was 14,596 and the Continental Airlines Arena holds 19,040. Remember, the official attendance is how many tickets were sold, not the number of people in the arena. Even in Detroit, empty seats have been spotted throughout the JLA for every game this year.

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Staal Leading Canes

from the AP via The Ledger,

The changes in Eric Staal were noticeable right from the start of training camp. Sure, he still had the baby-faced good looks that made him a fan favorite during his rookie year with the Carolina Hurricanes. He also continued to impress his teammates with his stellar work ethic and humble attitude, traits sometimes not found in a player selected No. 2 overall in the draft. ``He's always been that way,'' Carolina center Kevyn Adams said.

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Shoot for A Cure

Memorabilia collectors from around the world are getting a chance to own one-of-a-kind hockey goalie masks, including one painted and autographed by The Rolling Stones. The Source For Sport One-of-a-Kind Mask Auction, launched Friday at the Hockey Hall of Fame, also features masks signed by Wayne Gretzky, Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan and 10 stars of the World Poker Tour. “There’s a mystique about the painted goalie mask. It’s the goalie’s character. It’s their personality. It’s Gerry Cheevers and the stitches,” says Paul La Vigne, Marketing Manger for Source For Sports “Getting celebrities to bring out their personality on this type of canvas is very exciting.” Proceeds go to Shoot For A Cure, a campaign of the Canadian and American Spinal Research Organizations, which fund research to prevent and cure spinal cord injuries. Source For Sports one of Canada’s largest sporting goods retailers, chose Shoot For A Cure as its charity of choice in 2003 and has since raised more than $250,000 for its goals. Bid Now

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Ruutu & Nash

Tuomo Ruutu will be out of the Blackhawks lineup for a minimum of three weeks with re-occurring back problems. Rick Nash suffered a knee injury last night and is expected to miss the next two games.

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OLN Broadcast Under Fire

from the Globe and Mail,

Canadians got a look at the hockey telecasts produced by the U.S. Outdoor Life Network this week when TSN picked up the Chicago Blackhawks-Detroit Red Wings game. If you wondered why the National Hockey League has not connected with viewers in the United States -- the OLN ratings are minuscule -- this telecast gave you a lot of the answers.

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HNIC Goes HD

Too bad the HD feed of Hockey Night In Canada is not available to anyone in the USA, I am sure it will be an outstanding production. from the Ottawa Sun,

Venerable old Hockey Night in Canada is about to take a mighty leap into the future. Starting tomorrow night, the CBC will produce the first game of its Saturday night NHL doubleheader in high-definition format each weekend. It'll be available on the CBC's HD channel to viewers owning a television with high-definition capability. While the CBC has produced some HD hockey in the past -- the outdoor game at Edmonton's Commonwealth Stadium two years ago the most notable -- this season signals HNIC's first full-fledged plunge into the high-def world. It's a place where TSN and Rogers Sportsnet have both already been with some frequency.

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Cleary Gets 2nd Chance In Detroit

from the Edmonton Sun,

Daniel Cleary is on the bottom of the NHL pay scale, but he's landed right on top of the hockey heap after signing with the Detroit Red Wings a month ago. Cleary, 26, who played 220 games with the Edmonton Oilers from 2000 to 2003, has turned a camp tryout into a one-year contract with the Red Wings for the NHL minimum salary, a $450,000 deal he signed Oct. 4. All things considered, Hockeytown isn't a bad place to land for Cleary, who was deemed excess baggage by the Phoenix Coyotes and cut loose before the NHL lockout.

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How Did Demers Do It

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

The news that Jacques Demers was functionally illiterate during almost three decades of coaching in the NHL and WHA immediately causes you to plumb the depths of your mind for possible clues. Were there any outward hints or signs that Demers couldn't read or write during his time on the NHL front lines? Certainly, Demers never called to complain about anything that I'd written about him, but I put that down to two factors: That he was a good guy, who operated on the basis that there is no such thing as bad publicity; and two, that most of the notices he received were generally positive.

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Complaining Getting Old

from Terry Frei of ESPN,

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly recently fined Toronto coach Pat Quinn for knocking the New NHL (too little 5-on-5 time, gimmicks breaking ties and deciding games, stale popcorn, etc.). Boston Bruins team president Harry Sinden was sympathetic to Quinn, pointing out he had voiced similar sentiments during the exhibition season. In essence, Sinden inadvertently reminded us of his relative irrelevancy since dropping the GM title and not having as many opportunities to blame the Bruins' shortcomings on a coach and dodge an architect's accountability. Daly let Sinden off the hook. Sinden should have been whistled for obstructing the New NHL, too. Saying that really was hard.

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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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