Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Sabres Edge,
(Lindy) Ruff, on whether the trade rumors are dogging his team: “It’s part of the game, part of the rumor mill. It can affect a few players. But you focus on the fact we’ve lost one of our last 11. If it was bugging us, it should have been bugging us [before]. The rumors will come up and you guys will make up rumors—which you guys are usually good at. And I’ve told them not to listen to you guys so they know better.”
more on the Sabres…
WBEN hockey analyst Jim Kelley says the Campbell question comes down to a broader issue of money and whether Sabres owner Tom Golisano wants to make it or save it.
A shot at the playoffs mean a few more home games, and more money, but Kelley says the million dollar question is whether that is worth it, as part of the team’s economic plan.
“You make a couple of million bucks with a home win… and that’s a significant part of the bottom line, ” Kelley tells WBEN’s Steve Cichon, adding that the long term future of players like Campbell are directly tied to whether the team can afford to look long or short term….
“It comes down to what your priorities are, ” Kelly says, adding that the lack of a clear signal has started rumours churning, that say Golisano could be looking to sell the team.
He stresses that they are rumors only, but ones that raise the broader philosophical question about team spending.
from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
Atlanta GM Don Waddell has to deal with the Marian Hossa situation.
Buffalo GM Darcy Regier has to deal with the Bryan Campbell situation.
And the situations are close to identical.
Both GMs are holding out hope, albeit faint, of signing those players before the trade deadline on Feb. 26 or even the July 1 date when they both are scheduled to become unrestricted free agents.
But, while neither can or will say this publicly, the sense in Atlanta and Buffalo is both players are not going to sign before the trade deadline.
from the Buffalo News,
Defenseman Brian Campbell reiterated today that he hopes the Buffalo Sabres do not move him before the NHL trade deadline and, in fact, said he’s still hopeful of working out a new contract with the team.
Asked after the team’s pregame skate in Scotiabank Place if he expects to be with the Sabres next year, Campbell’s answer was, “That’s what I fully expect.”
from the Buffalo News,
The Sabres aren’t rebuilding, but they are retooling. Their success hinges on drafting and development, which means they need prospects and picks. Campbell should be worth a first-round pick or a very good prospect, or both depending on estimated draft position and the potential of the player headed for Buffalo.
Of course, this suggestion comes at a time in which the Sabres have won six of their last eight games and grabbed 14 of 16 possible points. Regier has a tendency to become smitten with his team and ignore its flaws rather than become skeptical of his players and address their weaknesses before they’re exposed in the playoffs.
Sorry, but this looks like a tease, a desperate team surfacing for air. They’re a couple of years and several good players from a serious playoff run. Assuming his hands aren’t tied — again — it’s time Regier gets to work before the Sabres get nothing for Campbell the way they did Jay McKee, Mike Grier, J.P. Dumont, Chris Drury and Daniel Briere.
Earlier today, Denis Potvin was on “Hockey This Morning” (NHL Home Ice XM 204) describing the scene last night in Buffalo regarding the horrific injury to Richard Zednik. Denis was doing color for FSN Florida last night.
Our thanks to Hockey This Morning on NHL Home Ice XM 204 for the providing the audio for KK readers.
Note: details of last night’s events were previously posted here on KK (including video).
Update 2:04pm ET: An update from the Panthers states that Zednik is still in stable condition, but remains in the intensive care unit.
Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, Florida Panthers, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: buffalo+sabres, denis+potvin, florida+panthers, media, neck+injury, nhl+today, olli+jokinen, richard+zednik, xm+radio
fro the AP via the Post Star,
“Who wouldn’t want to keep Brian Campbell?” Golisano said. “But the fact of the matter is, just our desire to keep him is not the only factor. ... We have to deal with the issues of other player’s salaries, and we can’t go beyond certain limits.”
Golisano noted the Sabres are on track to finish with a winning record for the third straight season, after having losing records the previous three years. And he noted the Sabres have been hampered by injuries that have contributed to them losing 13 games by one goal, including eight shootout losses.
“Look how competitive we’ve been these last three weeks,” Golisano said. “How can you argue with the results? I’m sure they’d like to block out that 10-game (winless) streak and have a chance to do it over again, but that’s not reality. So on we go.”
from the AP via Sports Illustrated,
General manager Darcy Regier said Friday he’s had regular discussions with agent Larry Kelly in hopes of getting contract talks restarted involving Campbell, the Sabres top defenseman, who’s in the final year of his deal.
“I wouldn’t call it full-blown negotiations, we’re just keeping the lines of communication open to see where it goes,” Regier told The Associated Press during the first intermission of Buffalo’s home game against Boston. “We’ve had conversations. We never really stopped.”
from Jerry Sullivan of the Buffalo News,
Darcy Regier, the Sabres’ GM, has conceded that trading Campbell is an option. But knowing Regier, he’ll fiddle around until the trade deadline, fretting and waiting for the perfect deal. There’s also the chance that management will grow reluctant to deal their top defenseman if the Sabres get hot and position themselves as a likely playoff team.
Regier shouldn’t let the team’s performance get in the way. Sure, the Sabres could get hot and slip into the playoffs, reviving title hopes among the team’s more gullible supporters. But Regier’s main concern has to be getting something for Campbell. If another star walks away for nothing, it’ll be an outrage.
from the Buffalo News,
The Buffalo Sabres are breathing easier today because goaltender Ryan Miller’s knee injury is not serious and he should play Tuesday night in Boston.
Miller, who did not come out for the third period of Friday’s 5-4 shootout loss in Atlanta, suffered a bruise to the right knee when he was hit by Atlanta’s Chris Thorburn late in the second period.
“It looks like Ryan will be OK,” coach Lindy Ruff said after this morning’s 40-minute practice in the Buffalo State Ice Arena. “I would expect him back at practice on Monday. We didn’t think it was too serious and that was confirmed. For sure, I would anticipate him playing on Tuesday.”
a little more...
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