Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

OLN Questions

Phil Coffey of NHL.com gets bombarded with OLN questions.

Phil, what can be done to improve the NHL's TV product? The picture quality on OLN here in the States is poor. Also, why does the NHL refuse to allow ESPN to show in-game highlights? Doesn't the NHL realize that getting their product on TV is more important now than ever? And when will OLN get back on the Dish Network? I don't know how many people have been affected by this, but as someone who needs a dish to get good television, I am upset that the Outdoor Life Network is no longer available unless you have cable. I live in northern New Hampshire and couldn't get OLN on my local cable company, so I got a dish. Now Comcast has made the cost of OLN to great for Dish Network to carry it. It doesn?t seem like the NHL signed a good contract with Comcast. What do you think?
read on for the answer and his response to other questions NHL fans have

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Shark Problems

from Shawn P. Roarke of Fox Sports,

A funny thing has happened on San Jose's way to dominating the Pacific Division this year. Somehow, the Sharks have lost their way, as well as much of the bite so many pundits predicted the team would possess before the season got under way. After 20 games, San Jose sits fourth in the Pacific Division and 10th overall in the Western Conference. The team has already lost a dozen games, including six in a row, and sits five points outside of the final playoff position.
more

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Foote Frustrated With Losing

from the Rocky Mountain News, Once the heart and soul of the Colorado Avalanche defense and a key member of two Stanley Cup championship teams, the 34-year- old Foote is having a difficult time adjusting to the losses that have become commonplace with the Columbus Blue Jackets. "Yeah, we're struggling to find wins," Foote said this week in an interview with the Rocky Mountain News. "I'd gone to the rink the past 10 years expecting to win. Now, it's frustrating. But I don't ever want to think I made the wrong decision." read on

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All Day Hockey

Just a heads up for everyone, we can watch hockey from noon until about 12:45am tomorrow. Settle in and enjoy some great games. Center Ice should be loaded into your 'favorites' on your remote by now.

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Update On Van Massenhoven

from the London Free Press,

Don Van Massenhoven will join the minority of NHL officials who wear a protective visor when he returns to work in about a month after being struck in the face by a deflected slapshot. The veteran referee was resting comfortably in the intensive care unit of a Plantation, Fla., hospital yesterday after undergoing seven hours of surgery late Wednesday. Doctors had to reconstruct his nose, nasal cavity, orbital bone and part of his forehead. Six plates were inserted and muscle tissue was taken from other parts of his body to replace the damaged forehead bone.
continued

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Chicago Asks For Help

via the AP,

After accumulating more penalty minutes and giving up more power plays than any team in the NHL, the Chicago Blackhawks are asking for help. Blackhawks general manager Dale Tallon has requested a meeting next week with Steve Walkom, the NHL's senior vice president and director of officiating, to try to determine why the Hawks are short-handed so often. "We're going to have myself, the coaches and players meet with Walkom, and we're going to go over it and discuss it and get to the bottom of it," Tallon said. "It has to be fixed. We can't keep doing it." The Hawks are averaging a league-high 22.4 penalty minutes a game and have been short-handed 172 times.

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Weekly Avery Quote

from the Tennessean, "Paul Kariya is the biggest diver in the league, and Hordichuk is the worst player in the NHL,'' Avery said. "He's an embarrassment. He can't even skate, he can't shoot and he can't pass. Just look at the stats.'' read on

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OLN Is Driven To Improve

from the Journal News,

Growing pains aside, OLN's job is to make NHL fans as fanatical and dependable as "Monday Night Football'' devotees. Acceptance of the new rules will help, as will anticipated technical improvements making the puck easier to see — the holy grail of hockey on TV. The network also is devoting time to features so that the f acemask-covered faces can become as familiar as those on other athletes. "You have to imagine yourself playing it or being in their shoes," said Smith, the former Rangers GM. "So when you have helmets and shields it's hard to imagine." When shooting for the front of the sports section, familiarity matters. And at OLN, as coordinating producer Mike Baker put it, there is a drive to improve everything. "OLN is the proverbial blank canvas," Baker said.

Continue Reading »

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The Rocket

I do hope this movie makes it to the U.S. or at least available on DVD. from News 1130 (Vancouver),

The Rocket, a new film about Maurice Richard, is as much about French-English relations as it is about the competitive fire that burned deep in the heart of the Montreal Canadiens icon. It chronicles a period many Canadians would rather forget and which still fuels some nationalists in Quebec, when French-Canadians were dismissed as "pea-soupers" and treated as second-class by their Anglo bosses. But it's not a rant. Screenwriter Ken Scott (La Grande seduction) has crafted a tale that is part sports story, part love story, part inspirational story and all heart. The Rocket opens under its French title, Maurice Richard, in Quebec on Friday. It will premiere in the rest of Canada on March 10.
read on

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1/3 Of NHL Players Using Perfomanced Enhancing Drugs

from CBC,

Dick Pound, chairman of the World Anti-Doping Agency, believes as many as one-third of the NHL's 700 players may be taking some form of performance-enhancing drug. "I spoke with Gary (NHL commissioner Gary Bettman) and he said 'We don't have the problem in hockey,'" Pound said Thursday in an interview with the London Free Press. "I told him he does. You wouldn't be far wrong if you said a third (of hockey players are gaining some pharmaceutical assistance)." Asked if he meant performing-enhancing drugs, Pound replied "Yes."
continued update 10:41pm, Bill Daly responds to this claim, from the CP via 940 Montreal,
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly has taken exception to comments by Dick Pound, president of the World Anti-Doping Agency, suggesting as many as one-third of the NHL's 700 players may take some form of performance-enhancing substance. "I find it troubling, to say the least, that he would find it necessary to comment on something he has absolutely no knowledge of. Perhaps Mr. Pound would be better served to limit his comments to topics as to which he has knowledge, instead of speculating on matters as to which he has none."
update 11:28pm, from the CP via Canada.com,
Saskin also bristled at Pound's statement. "Dick Pound's comments are incredibly irresponsible and have no basis in fact," said Saskin. "He has no knowledge of our sport and our players and frankly has no business making such comments."

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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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