Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Vernon Fidler Retiring

from Vernon Fidler at The Player's Tribune,

I'm retiring today.

I know, I know. I really thought I was going to play longer than Jagr, too. But here we are are.

I’m going to get to how an undrafted kid from Alberta played almost 900 games in the NHL — and also how Joffrey Lupul is terrible at impressions — but first I want to tell you about a really bad day in the Fiddler household.

It was August 9, 1988. I was eight years old and enjoying the summer in Edmonton. I had just come home to eat some lunch after running around with my friends all morning. Like usual in our house, the radio was on. And that was when I heard it. Wayne Gretzky was getting traded to L.A.

You have to understand — to a kid growing up in Edmonton in the ’80’s, Wayne wasn’t just a hockey player, he wasn’t even a god … he was bigger than that. He was Wayne.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: vernon+fiddler

Seattle Looks Like A Go, But What About Quebec City?

from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,

Now that Tim Leiweke has his arena deal looking like a lock in Seattle, with an NHL expansion team certain to follow, the question is: What does this mean for Quebec City?

The short answer is: not a lot. It still means Quebec City and its supporters have to be patient and wait for another team to relocate. Seattle was always right there with Las Vegas among the NHL governors when it came to the favourite cities for expansion. The only thing preventing an announcement was an arena deal.

Leiweke, the former president and chief executive officer of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, has one in reach. Seattle won't be awarded a team tomorrow, or maybe even next month or next year, but it will get one.

"That means it's just a matter of time before NHL franchise 32 is awarded," one NHL governor said on Tuesday after news of the Seattle deal surfaced. "It's where we've always wanted to go."


Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: quebec+city, seattle

PTO Players Who Can Make Their Team

Dan Rosen of NHL.com answers some questions...

Who is most likely to stick with a team off a professional tryout contract for this upcoming season?

My top three candidates going into training camp are defenseman Cody Franson (Chicago Blackhawks), right wing Jimmy Hayes (New Jersey Devils) and center Jay McClement (Penguins).

The Blackhawks have to fill Brian Campbell's spot on defense and Franson might be the ideal fit at a bargain price. He's right-handed with size (6-foot-5, 224 pounds), moves well, advances the puck, joins the rush and drives possession. These are all important factors in fitting in with the Blackhawks, who appear to have an opening on the right side for a third-pair defenseman.

The Devils need depth. Hayes would provide that. There is a lot of competition in New Jersey for forwards in a bottom-six role, but many of the players, including John Quenneville, Nick Lappin, Stefan Noesen, Miles Wood, Michael McLeod and Blake Speers are young and on the fringe of being NHL regulars. Hayes could give the Devils more time to develop at least one of those players.

McClement could be Matt Cullen's replacement in Pittsburgh.

more Q & A...

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Drew Doughty Wants To Stay With The Los Angeles Kings

from Lisa Dillman of NHL.com,

"I don't want to go anywhere else," Doughty said Tuesday on the eve of training camp.

The comments come four days after Doughty told The Hockey News he would consider playing elsewhere for a chance to win the Stanley Cup again.

"I'd love to re-sign in L.A. But if our team isn't going in the right direction …," Doughty, who won the Stanley Cup with the Kings in 2012 and 2014, told the magazine. "I want to win Cups. I don't give a [darn] where I play. I just want to win Cups, and that's the bottom line."

He tried to clarify those comments Tuesday.

"My one comment, 'I don't care where I play. I just want to win [Stanley] Cups.' That is true. I just want to win Cups," said Doughty, who can become an unrestricted free agent after the 2018-19 season. "When I said that, it didn't mean I didn't want to do it in L.A. The bottom line is all I care about is Cups. I don't want to win a Cup anywhere else but L.A. That's the bottom line."

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: drew+doughty

The Calgary Flames Will Not Pursue New Arena

from David Blackwell of the Calgary Herald,

The Calgary Flames are no longer going to pursue a new arena in Calgary, Flames President and CEO Ken King said during a news conference with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman in Calgary on Tuesday.

After months of talks with Calgary officials, King said it became clear the city has no genuine interest in helping build a new arena for the NHL team.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Afternoon Line- Brendan Shanahan

“I’m a little hesitant, at the end of the day we got into the playoffs in our 81st game, we didn’t get past the first round and yet still there was a lot of happiness and joy and optimism about where we can go.

“You know, you have to do it, and we understand that there’s a lot of work ahead of us.”

-Brendan Shanahan, President of the Toronto Maple Leafs on the hype surrounding the Leafs.  Chris Johnston of Sportsnet has more.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Attendance Issue In Ottawa

from Scott Stinson at the Toronto Sun,

If the Carolina Hurricanes were throwing tarps over 1,500 seats in the upper bowl, if the Phoenix Coyotes were trying to goose capacity figures by lowering capacity, if the Florida Panthers were tweaking ticket demand by reducing the supply, it is fair to say that we in the Canadian sports media would be raising a good stink about it.

I can say that because I would be one of the stink-raisers. We’d be having another good chuckle about the overexpansion of the National Hockey League in the southern U.S., and we’d be giving Gary Bettman a metaphorical boop on the snoot about the folly of keeping teams in failed markets and asking, again, why the league is adding a 31st franchise when it clearly has problems with some of the existing 30.

But it is the Ottawa Senators that are removing 1,500 seats from the ticket pool, and so we don’t know quite what to think. Haven’t we been saying for years that the NHL’s Canadian markets are unassailable? Don’t we take as a given that the NHL should be in Quebec and it should put another team in the Toronto area and maybe somewhere in Saskatchewan while it’s at it?


Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Preseason NHL Hockey On The NHL Network

September 12, 2017 – NHL Network today announced its upcoming slate of preseason games, featuring more than 20 matchups in 16 days, including the Vegas Golden Knights’ first-ever preseason game this Sunday, September 17, live at 5:00 p.m. ET against the Vancouver Canucks

The Golden Knights will be showcased in four preseason matchups on NHL Network, facing off against three Pacific Division opponents: the Canucks, the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday, September 26 at 10:00 p.m. ET, and the San Jose Sharks on Sunday, October 1 at 8:00 p.m. ET.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, NHL Network, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Hockey Thoughts Today

from Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet,

- The good news for Colorado as it waits for L’Affaire Duchene to sort itself out? At the NHL media tour last week in Manhattan, MacKinnon said, “It’s funny. More than ever, I want to be part of the Avs right now, because to be where we were and then to win would be unbelievable.”...

- No NHL home yet for Russian free agent Danis Zaripov. There are concerns about a 36-year-old who has never played in North America and doesn’t speak English, but word is teams have been told that Zaripov isn’t interested in holding them hostage. If he signs a contract and it doesn’t work, he is prepared to walk away.

-  Entering the 2017 playoffs, Braden Holtby’s post-season numbers were spectacular — a 1.87 goals-against average and .937 save percentage in 46 games. Then came Toronto, where he was beaten by several strange ones. Another NHL goalie called the Maple Leafs’ goals “some of the weirdest” he’d ever seen. There were reports Washington considered pulling Holtby and he admitted it bothered him. “(It was) completely bizarre, the bounces and things that were happening. Fortunately, we won, but the thing I’ve worked on is not letting it affect me in the next series, getting over that mental hurdle — the feeling of things not going your way. That was the most I’ve been challenged in my career in terms of uncontrollable things that just happen. It’s good to go through because it will help our team in the future, and also myself. It was difficult.” Holtby pointed out that when you are struggling, you can watch video or do extra practice. But when you feel you are doing things right and still getting beat, it’s “difficult to stay on that (positive) path.”

much more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

$2.7M Donated For Hurricane Relief In Florida

TAMPA/SUNRISE/NEW YORK/TORONTO (Sept. 12, 2017) – The Tampa Bay Lightning, Florida Panthers, National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) and National Hockey League (NHL) today announced a joint donation of $2.7 million for hurricane relief to those affected across the state of Florida by Hurricane Irma.

Extensive damage was caused to the entire state of Florida by the Hurricane which made landfall in the state on Sunday, first hitting the Florida Keys. Negative impacts have been felt by millions of people in many different ways across the state, including Miami/Ft. Lauderdale, Naples, Lakeland, Tampa Bay and Jacksonville.

Fans and members of the community who wish to support these efforts can donate through The Lightning Foundation, The Florida Panthers Foundation or by making contributions at the teams’ home preseason games, which begin next week. For more information, please visit NHL.comNHLPA.comfloridapanthers.com or tampabaylightning.com.

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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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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