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NHL Signs On With European Network

from ABC via Reuters,

The National Hockey League, fighting to attract fans and find new revenue after a season-long hiatus, has cast its eye overseas by signing a four-year broadcast deal with a fledgling European network devoted to North American sports. The NHL's agreement with the North American Sports Network (NASN), which also recently landed rights to show National Football League games in 21 European countries, is to show more than 200 games each season including over high-definition TV, broadband and wireless formats. The exclusive deal across Europe is effective immediately. NASN has an option to extend it by two years and an option for Asia-Pacific rights, although the channel has no presence there.

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DVR In Overdrive Tonight

Wings/Canucks, Penguins/Sabres, Leafs/Sens, Bruins/Bolts, Flames/Avs and Oliers/Ducks. Plus Yankees/Angels and MNF Steelers/Chargers. Looks like a long night and early morning. Hope the DVR doesn't run out of hard drive space.

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For The Hockey Lover

Frank Albin of the San Jose Sharks wrote an article today informing his readers of his hockey "surfing" habits. Frank mentions many of the websites we as hockey fans are familiar with, and many that even long time and loyal hockey fans may have yet to visit. I always enjoy finding anything hockey related and was also very surprised and honored to be included in Frank's list. I appreciate the mention and recommend all readers to check out Mr. Albin's "Great Hockey Websites".

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OLN, Cablevison & Dish

via Multichannel,

After reaching an accord with Adelphia Communications Corp. to carry the NHL contests, OLN executives said today that they were still engaged in “active discussions” with Cablevision and Dish about trying to come to terms on a pact that would provide puck participants with access to the game. Looking for digital placement, OLN -- which was scheduled to cover the game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabres at 7 p.m. (EST) Monday -- has said it will not make NHL games available to distributors on which OLN is available to less than 40% of its subscriber base. Cablevision carries OLN on a $4.95-per-month sports tier and counts fewer than 25,000 customers. The MSO ran ads for its iO Sports Pak in New York metro-area newspapers Monday. For its part, Dish distributes the Comcast Corp.-owned network on its “America’s Top 180” offering. Neither Cablevision nor Dish could be reached by press time. An OLN spokeswoman said the network had “authorized Adelphia to carry its NHL games for the balance of the season.” An Adelphia spokeswoman confirmed that an accord had been struck. But neither party would disclose any deal terms, nor where OLN would be positioned on Adelphia systems. The MSO’s spokeswoman would only say that OLN previously had been available on a variety of packages.

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Low Attendance Today

While watching the Rangers play the Capitals at the MCI Center in D.C., I could not help but notice the empty seats. The arena holds around 20,000 and the announced attendance was 10,700, but my guess is no more than 5000 fans were in the seats. Now I know it is Columbus Day and most of D.C. has the day off, but why schedule an afternoon game unless they offered some sort of discount on tickets for Federal Employees. Caps won the game 3-2, but the game lacked any real intensity.

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Ryan Smyth Out with Knee Injury

via TSN, The undefeated Edmonton Oilers have suffered a setback in the young NHL season, as veteran forward Ryan Smyth is out indefinitely with a sprained medial collateral ligament in his left knee. update 3:57pm, In another player move, the Nashville Predators announced Monday that the club has re-assigned right wing Jordin Tootoo to the Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League. update 4:43pm, The Phoenix Coyotes will have to make due without the services of Curtis Joseph for the short term, as the netminder aggravated a nagging groin injury in the team's home game against the Wild on Saturday. The Coyotes have called up goaltneder Steve Passmore and are expected to place Joseph on injured reserve. Also, the Blackhawks have placed Eric Daze on IR, with re-occurring back problems.

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What It Is Like To Be Crosby

from Kara Yorio of the Sporting News

, Four people with television cameras jostle for position in the cramped visitors locker room at Continental Airlines Arena in New Jersey. This is a shot they can't miss. Penguins rookie Sidney Crosby is coming off the ice from the morning skate. He sits down alone -- and he unties his skates. Television doesn't get more riveting than that.

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Fine Start For OLN

from John McGourty of NHL.com,

Whatever concerns executives of the NHL and the Comcast-owned OLN had about the network's ability to cover hockey were quickly allayed in last Wednesday night's debut. OLN set ratings records with the broadcasts and was particularly strong among men, 18-to-34. Excluding Tour de France coverage, it was OLN's most watched Wednesday night ever among households, men 18-49, men 25-54 and total viewers.

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A Wild Start

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

It has been a wild and wooly first few days since the return of the National Hockey League. Shootouts, comebacks, a bewildering parade of penalties and the arrival of a host of young players whose future seems to be now. Here is a look at some of the highs and lows, surprises and disappointments of a season in its infancy, and a league whose recovery is likewise in its toddling stage.

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During The Lockout

A very nice feature on a recent Page 3 from ESPN. Check out what some of the players did during the lockout.

Tampa Bay Lightning center Vinny Lecavalier went swimming with sharks in South Africa. The Detroit Red Wings' Chris Chelios and Chris Therien of the Philadelphia Flyers started a moving company. Toronto's Eric Lindros got his master's degree, and Travis Green of the Boston Bruins qualified for the World Series of Poker.

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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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