Kukla's Korner Hockey
Stan Bowman, son of Hall-of-Fame Coach Scotty Bowman, talks about the path he has chosen in his hockey career.
The Chicago Blackhawks have promoted Stan Bowman to General Manager and have reassigned Dale Tallon to the position of Senior Advisor, Hockey Operations.
“We are very proud to promote Stan to his new position of General Manager,” Blackhawks President John McDonough said. “He brings a comprehensive knowledge of hockey, along with a tremendous intellect and methodical approach to building a successful team and sustaining success. His involvement with our organization and strong understanding of our roster and our system create a very natural and strong transition. Dale will continue to be an important part of our organization, as he has been for many years.”
from Josh Mora of CSNChicago,
Late Monday night sources told me the Blackhawks had fired Dale Tallon as GM and replaced him with Assistant GM Stan Bowman. With Rick Dudley already gone to Atlanta this off-season, it means that the Blackhawks have turned over virtually their entire front office since John McDonough came in as president, with Bowman being the lone exception.
First, some thoughts about Bowman. Stan is a very sharp guy. Though his background is the financial side, rather than the player/scouting side, he’s been around hockey all his life. (He was named after the Stanley Cup for Pete’s sake!) He’s been involved in the decisions about on-ice personnel since I’ve been around the team. With Stan, the club is in good hands going forward.
But how Stan ascends to the general manager’s position, and how it became available in the first place, betrays big political maneuverings in the front office. Those kinds of things are never healthy—not when those conflicts are ongoing, and in the end they aren’t healthy for those who survive the conflict. These kinds of manifestations of petty jealousies are worrisome for a franchise that has had so much going in the right direction.
from Mike Kiley at ChicagoNow,
The Blackhawks, even as they emerge as paper tigers among the NHL elite, will nonetheless be on trial next weekend at their fan convention.
As promising as their future appears for 2009-10, especially with the addition of high-scoring forward Marian Hossa, they will be asked to present indisputable evidence that shows Cristobal Huet is their No. 1 goaltender beyond a reasonable doubt.
Can that case be proven in a weekend of salesmanship? Was Huet worth 4 years at $5.625 million when the Hawks signed him as a free agent in July, 2008? Will you go home from the festivities next Sunday convinced that the net is in the hands of a master goaltender or a never-will-be?
The Chicago Blackhawks have signed center Mark Cullen to a one-year contact.
Cullen, 30, registered National Hockey League career highs in games played (29), goals (7), assists (9) and points (16) in 29 games with the Blackhawks in 2005-06. Last season, the Virginia, Minnesota, native ranked fifth on the American Hockey League’s Manitoba Moose with 25 assists and sixth with 39 points in 56 regular-season contests. He helped Manitoba reach the Calder Cup Finals, notching nine assists and 13 points in 20 postseason tilts.
A seven year pro, Cullen also appeared in three games with the Philadelphia Flyers in 2006-07, his last NHL action.
from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,
What lies ahead for the 2009-10 season, in the words of Red Wings general manager Ken Holland, is “the most challenging regular season we’ve had since the early 1990s.”
The Red Wings have won the Central Division every year since the Blue Jackets joined the league in 2000-01, an eight-season run that ranks as the longest current streak in the NHL.
But one must wonder whether a changing of the guard isn’t on the horizon in the Central.
from Chicago Breaking News,
Reggie Fleming, a member of the Chicago Blackhawks 1961 Stanley Cup champions, passed away this morning at Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights, his son Chris said today. He was 73.
A hard-nosed defenseman known for the kind of grittiness that earned him the reputation as one of the toughest hockey players in his day, Fleming was especially valuable as a penalty-killer. He also set what was then a single-game NHL record for penalty minutes as a rookie with the Hawks during a matchup with the New York Rangers.
Reggie’s son Chris did a series of interviews with his dad after he suffered a stroke and heart attack four years ago . Watch the first of the series…
The rest of the interviews can be watched here, with the last interview done about a month ago.
If I may suggest, maybe take a few minutes of your day to watch the first video of the series which may in fact lead you to watch the rest of the series.
added 6:41pm, Chicago Blackhawks Chairman W. Rockwell “Rocky” Wirtz and General Manager Dale Tallon have released the following statements regarding the passing of former Blackhawks forward Reggie Fleming, 73.
from Tim Sassone of Between The Circles at the Chicago Daily-Herald, Blackhawks GM Dale
Tallon admitted Wednesday the team made a mistake getting qualifying contract offers to his restricted free agents on time but claimed the goof did not force them to overpay for Kris Versteeg and Cam Barker.
Versteeg and Barker signed three-year, $9.25 million contract extensions after earning $984,000 and $490,000 last season, respectively.
“I think that we got them at fair market value,” Tallon said. “When you compare the comparables, looking at the point production of Barker and Versteeg and all the other players, those numbers are right in line with what they possibly would have gotten in arbitration. We’re happy to get them long term.”
via Tim Sassone of Between The Circles,
A source confirmed the Hawks and restricted free agent winger Kris Versteeg have finalized a three-year deal worth more than $9 million. The contract could be announced officially by the team on Wednesday.
Signing Versteeg for roughly $3 million puts the Hawks just about at the $56.8 million salary cap. A $3 million cap hit for Versteeg would put the Hawks’ payroll at approximately $55.578 million, not counting the salary for the backup goalie.
It’s looking more and more that a trade will need to be made to move out some salary, possibly Versteeg or Cam Barker or even Patrick Sharp.
from Roman Modrowski of ESPN Chicago,
The agent for Kris Versteeg said he is in ongoing negotiations with the Chicago Blackhawks and hopes to get a deal done soon.
Versteeg is the last of the Hawks’ seven restricted free agents who received qualifying offers after the June 29 deadline. The Blackhawks re-signed the other six on Monday.
The National Hockey League Players Association filed a grievance Monday over the Hawks’ handling of the qualifying offers. If the NHL rejects the grievance, the matter will go to an arbitrator. At that point, it would be possible for Versteeg to be declared an unrestricted free agent, and the Hawks could lose the talented, young forward on the open market.
But Versteeg’s agent David Kaye said he doesn’t want it to get to that point.
“We’ve been negotiating with Chicago fairly regularly here, and I expect hopefully something will get done in the next few days,” Kaye said Tuesday.
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.
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