Kukla's Korner Hockey
The Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons offers a little less time to hockey notes in the middle of the summer, and aside from his weekly anti-Corsi rant, here's the gist of his hockey commentary from his Sunday notebook:
What happens if David Clarkson is as inept in Year 2 with the Leafs as he was in Year 1? Do they want a $5-million player on their fourth line (who isn’t Mike Richards)? Or will Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment swallow hard and send him to the minors, even if there is very little salary-cap help for doing so. In the end, performance will be up to Clarkson. One NHL scout makes a Michal Handzus comparison to Clarkson: “Los Angeles signed him to a large free-agent contract in ’07. And he sucked the first year. They were kind of frantic about that. But after that, he played OK for them. He really did."
Still available in free agency: Martin Brodeur, Tim Thomas and Ilya Bryzgalov ... Went over the list of 234 unsigned free agents: The only one I had semi-interest in was Daniel Winnik, banging winger, formerly of the Anaheim Ducks
Simmons continues and discusses his usual myriad of topics...
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
Both Lee Stempniak (in on a one-year free agent deal for $900,000) and Matt Lombardi (in at $800,000 per for two years) will fall under the AHL threshold, so neither would count against the cap for so much of a nickel if either fails to make the Rangers out of camp.
But these additions of marginal NHL players doesn’t say a lot for the organization’s confidence in the readiness of kids in the organization such as J.T. Miller, Danny Kristo, Oscar Lindberg, Ryan Haggerty and maybe even Jesper Fast to nail down spots with the varsity, much less be difference-makers.
Seriously. Would Stempniak — who scored for the Penguins in Game 1 against the Rangers, then went pointless in the next six matches of the second round while bouncing all over the lineup — or Lombardi — who was in Switzerland last year and hasn’t had a productive NHL season since 2009-10 — have made a difference against L.A.?
And how three years at $1.45 million per for Tanner Glass — scratched by Pittsburgh for five of seven playoff games against the Rangers — is a better investment than one year at $1.633 million for Derek Dorsett escapes me.
more plus other topics...
from Adam Gretz of About.com,
Twenty players filed for salary arbitration before the July 5 deadline -- and three more players will be taken to arbitration by their team -- and the hearings are scheduled to begin on Monday, July 21, with Cody Franson of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Here is a quick refresher course for how the arbitration process works.
It's a process that teams and players usually try to avoid at all costs. The hearings can be brutal as both sides make their arguments for what the player is worth. Both sides have an agenda, and while the player and his representation are going to make their case for why they deserve a higher contract, the team will make it's case for why they don't.
Even though a player -- or team -- chooses to go the arbitration route and files for it, the hearing can still be avoided by reaching a new contract agreement before the hearing date, something that usually tends to happen.
continued, includes all the salary arbitration dates...
from Tracey Myers of CSNChicago,
Pat Foley couldn’t believe it when he got the call earlier this summer: he was a Foster Hewitt Memorial Award winner and would be part of the Hockey Hall of Fame.
“I asked, ‘Wasn’t there anyone else?’” Foley said on Saturday. “Truthfully, it’s still hard to wrap my head around it. But to me, this is the stuff that happens at the end of your career. I think I have a few more miles left in me.”
Foley discussed the prestigious honor, his love of broadcasting and how he got to the Chicago Blackhawks’ booth during his panel session at the Chicago Hilton on Saturday morning.
What would you award Cody Franson (stats)?
from Jim Day of The Guardian,
Gerard “Turk’’ Gallant is guzzling a can of Zero Coke mid-morning moments after entering his home on the outskirts of Summerside.
He will likely have tossed back four sodas by day’s end, well down from the 10 or so daily pops he would drink during his playing days in the National Hockey League.
He has never been one for tea or coffee.
Gallant, 50, washed down a breakfast of steak and eggs with chocolate milk while speaking with The Guardian about his long career in hockey that now sees him readying for the 2014-15 NHL season as the Florida Panthers new head coach.
His tasteful personal hockey shrine in the room he describes as the “one we are never in’’ offers a snapshot of an impressive run in professional hockey that spans three decades and counting.
At the American Century Championship yesterday...
By mid-July standards, this Tweet from TSN's Darren Dreger counts as breaking news:
Having lost Brian Boyle to Tampa Bay, Stempniak's a solid-enough replacement.
Update: Here comes Sportsnet...
The Chicago Blackhawks are holding their annual summer fan convention--something I wish other teams would emulate--in the Windy City this weekend, so the warm fuzzies have begun in earnest.
Capgeek will tell you that there's a $2.216 million elephant in the room, however, an elephant that will ensure that not every player who attends the convention will start the season with the Hawks, and NHL.com's Brian Hedger discussed the Hawks' cap overage with GM Stan Bowman on Friday:
"We certainly have to be ready to go by October, that's the goal," Bowman said Friday at the annual Blackhawks Convention at the Chicago Hilton. "A lot of things change between now and then. You have to display some patience."
Bowman is setting a good example, but fans and media aren't as willing to wait. The fact one, or more, players won't be with the organization much longer will be a storyline for the Blackhawks until something happens.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org