Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,
On his first day of work with the Blue Jackets last November, John Davidson compared the “brick by brick” construction of the Arena District with the patient, painstaking approach he would use inside Nationwide Arena to rebuild the downtrodden hockey team.
That phrase has taken on a life of its own — in the daily lexicon around the rink, and even on T-shirts in the gift shop.
But no one could have expected Davidson and the Blue Jackets to have this many bricks in place only months later....
“It’s always nice to underpromise and overdeliver,” said Davidson, who noted that previous general manager Scott Howson left the cupboard stocked beyond what many realized.
“From what I saw, we just needed to grab this thing, change that culture, and make sure people knew their seat on the bus and go from there.”
added 3:19pm, from Adrian Dater of the Denver Post,
Roy, who was not suspended, said he was informed of the fine by NHL director of hockey operations Colin Campbell.
Roy got into a heated shouting match with Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau in the final seconds of the Avs' 6-1 victory and also shoved the glass partition separating the team's benches twice.
Boudreau after the game called Roy's actions "classless" and said he initially approached Roy near the glass partition because Roy was yelling at his players.
Roy fired back at Boudreau after Avs practice Thursday.
"What Boudreau said was all lies," Roy said. "I don't talk to players, I respect all the players. I'm certainly not going to get too involved in this one, but when you talk about classless — when you're lying, this is classless."
from Shawn Mitchell of the Columbus Dispatch,
Richards hasn’t ignored last season, nor the season before, when the Jackets finished 30th overall. Neither should be disregarded, he said, because there is knowledge to be gleaned from the good and the bad.
“You can’t just sweep it under the rug like it didn’t happen because you have to learn from it,” Richards said. “But you also have to move on
.” Richards lifted a corner of that rug for a moment yesterday after a sloppy start to practice.
“He mentioned (last season) because we had a slow start,” defenseman James Wisniewski said. “He said it’s just not going to click back to the way we were playing last year on Friday (against Calgary). We have to pick up the pace. We have to move our feet. It has to be religion to us.”
Still, there is pluck. President of hockey operations John Davidson spoke of his team’s “right to win” and his team’s identity as a “good club in this league” on the eve of training camp. There is an aura of confidence to the Jackets that likely was not there at the start of last season, he said.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
Five non-playoff teams from last season that will jump into a playoff spot this season:
Edmonton Oilers: OK, so this sounds like a broken record but finally, truly, really, the young Oilers will break through and get in after stockpiling all that talent over the past several years. Dallas Eakins was a brilliant hire as head coach.
Columbus Blue Jackets: Probably least confident in this pick, but I do think the Jackets have a shot at challenging for a playoff spot. For the Jackets to get in, Sergei Bobrovsky has to prove his Vezina year wasn't a fluke, and secondary scoring cannot be an issue.
read on for the other three teams...
Midway through training camp, there is a pervasive feeling that the Jackets have been afforded a fresher start than they have had in some time.
Two years ago, James Wisniewski was slapped with a hefty suspension and the Jackets fell on their face when the gate opened. Last year, there was a lockout, followed by a front-office purge. Then came the surprise stretch run to the truncated 2013 season.
By now, the new management team has shaped things to its specifications. There is some depth in the organization.
The team will be playing in a new division, in a different conference. It’s like somebody hit the reset button. The games do not count until next month. Exhibition season can be misleading. But the vibe is good.
-Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch were you can read more on the improving Blue Jackets.
from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,
He remains the quiet type, but not as painfully so. His English is improved, which is important to a man who strives to be perfectly understood. All in all, he comes across as … what?
There is something different in his bearing, in his eyes.
It has something to do with the Vezina. “It inspires me more,” Bobrovsky said. “It gives me more confidence. It makes me want more and more. It makes me want to win another one, and win with the team that gave me the confidence.”
He has a team now. He has the Blue Jackets. Finally....
The story took yet another twist in May, when Bobrovsky joined the Russian national team at the world championships in Sweden. There, Bobrovsky found out he was not starting. Bryzgalov was.
Bobrovsky abruptly left Sweden. How far did he go to get away? He and his wife flew to Fiji.
“What can I do? I look forward,” he said.
Where? Bobrovsky was a free agent, and he was being pulled from two different continents.
COLUMBUS, OHIO --- The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed right wing Jared Boll to a three-year contract extension through the 2016-17 National Hockey League season, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced today. As is club policy, terms were not disclosed.
“Jared Boll has invested a great deal of himself in this organization and community and we are very happy that he will continue to be an important part of our hockey club,” said Kekalainen. “He brings toughness, determination and a great work ethic to our team and has become an important leader for us both on and off the ice.”
Boll has spent his entire professional career with the Blue Jackets, registering 24 goals and 28 assists for 52 points with 963 penalty minutes in 388 games. He ranks second on the club in career penalty minutes (Jody Shelley – 1,025) and is fourth in games played (Rick Nash – 674, David Vyborny – 543, Rostislav Klesla – 515), leading all current players in both categories.
from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,
On Thursday, when NHL training camps open, the Blue Jackets begin their quest to prove that their 19-5-5 finish last spring was not an aberration but the dawn of an era.
“That’s going to be part of my message to the team throughout camp,” coach Todd Richards said. “We’re either going to be a team that overachieved or a team that is truly on the right track. That’s the thing we have to prove.
“Was it a fluke, or is that really us? Do we really have this thing moving in the right direction? Until you’re a perennial winner, that’s a fair question.”
Richards believes the answer is yes. So does everybody else in Nationwide Arena, it seems. “We have a group that, when we walk into our building or any other building, we should have our heads held high and our chests popped out,” president of hockey operations John Davidson said.
“We know we’re a good hockey club. “We went into last season not knowing where the heck this thing was going to go. Were we going to pick No. 1 overall? Maybe No. 3? Well, we weren’t even close to being on that end of it. We almost made the playoffs.
“And now, with the summers our guys have had — we’ve watched that very closely — we expect to compete.”
from the Columbus Blue Jackets,
We've been through a lot together, haven't we? When Nationwide Arena opened its doors to NHL hockey 13 years ago, we envisioned it becoming one of the best atmospheres in professional sports. This city's pride and passion for its teams helped make it clear early on that the Blue Jackets would enjoy a significant home ice advantage. ...
Remember the pulsating din of Game 4 of the 2009 Stanley Cup playoffs, the game that still sends a chill down your spine when you think about it? We want that and so much more, and as we continue this new chapter of Blue Jackets hockey, we need your help (but we think you'll be just fine in tagging along for the ride).
It's time to #DefendNWA, stand up for our city, our team and our rink to make this the best home ice advantage in the NHL. What does that mean? It means that the Blue Jackets family - fans, players, coaches, management, staff and the community - is all in this together, just like John Davidson so often says. Everyone pulls the rope, everyone does their part, and we're well on our way.
Contract negotiations with SKA St. Petersburg intended to draw Vezina-winning goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky away from Columbus Blue Jackets were going on at a “high level” this offseason, the player has told R-Sport.
SKA, one of the Russia-based KHL’s wealthiest teams, reportedly offered the 24-year-old netminder $10 million per season before he became a restricted free agent in early July. Bobrovsky, whose 21-11 record and 2.00 goals against average last season earned him the Vezina Trophy as the NHL’s top goaltender, eventually signed a two-year deal with Columbus on July 1.
Still, the Novokuznetsk native, who starred for SKA during last season’s NHL lockout, told R-Sport at Russia’s Olympic national team orientation camp over the weekend negotiations to return to St. Petersburg had been rolling forward.
“Basically, the negotiation process was moving along, and at a high level,” he said, noting, however, that the NHL was the best career option “by far.”
While SKA’s package was never confirmed, team executive Alexander Medvedev, who is also league president, said in June it was “an excellent offer.”
Bobrovsky said money was not the sole determining factor in his decision to return to small-market Columbus, which had the NHL's seventh-lowest payroll last season.
“Of course, money plays a big role in my life, but my decisions don’t come together just for the money,” he said.
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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