Kukla's Korner Hockey
Last week the KHL announced it was undertaking medical evaluations across the league and invited media members to observe the process.
Today, after the first round of evaluations have been completed on some 67 players under the age of 20, some preliminary results were made public:
Based upon the first round of examinations, three KHL players were found to have heart problems. These athletes were referred to cardiologist specialists to undergo more testing.
The KHL’s Medical Center won’t be banning players as yet; the cardiologists will make that determination.
Full text of the press release is below:
The KHL recently dealt with the fallout from Alexei Cherepanov’s death by adopting a list of resolutions in hopes of avoiding such tragedies in the future.
Today they’ve issued another press release related to those issues, this one inviting members of the media to observe their medical evaluation process. Presumably this openness is meant to reassure current and prospective players of the KHL’s commitment to their welfare.
Full text of the press release is available below.
From Bill Meltzer at NHL.com:
[Patrick] Thoresen elected to play this season Europe because he was unable to get a 1-way contract in the NHL and stood to make more money playing in Switzerland than he would have on the minor-league end of a 2-way deal in the NHL. But his ambition is not to win the Swiss scoring title. He has made clear all along that we wants to return to North America.
“My goal is to play well enough to get a 1-way contract and become an NHL player again,” he said.
Thoresen has 31 points in 19 games this season.
From the Associated Press today the allegation from Col. Vladimir Karpenko, a spokesman for the commander of Russia’s Railway Troops, that Alexei Cherepanov (who, of course, recently died during a game) was in fact playing “illegally” and should have been serving his mandatory military service at the time.
The full story is here.
The Canadiens’ young prospect Pavel Valentenko signed a deal in Russia earlier this week, and the Habs responded today by suspending the player from the team and presenting their concerns to the IIHF.
Valentenko’s Canadian agent Roland Hedges tries to explain his client’s actions. From the Canadian Press via TSN:
Hedges said Valentenko has been supporting his family since he was 15, and took a pay cut to pursue his NHL dream when he signed with Montreal before the 2007-08 season.
After playing all of last season and the first four games of this season with Hamilton, he was given permission to return to Russia to attend to a family matter. He said the signing was not premeditated.
“His intention was to go home to see his parents and see what he could do,” said Hedges. “When he got home, his father already had the deal done (with Dynamo).
“And if you saw the size of the deal, you’d see why.”
From the IIHF:
The IIHF Disciplinary Committee is reviewing a report that was received on 21st October 2008, which outlines that player Matt Murley, 28, (home IIHF member national association USA Hockey) has played without a valid IIHF International Transfer Card (ITC) for the Russian club Amur Khabarovsk.
The IIHF Disciplinary Committee has informed the Ice Hockey Federation of Russia, the Hockey Club Amur Khabarovsk and the player, Matt Murley, that the committee has opened an investigation with regards to this matter.
Amur Khabarovsk is participating in the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) of Russia, which is under the jurisdiction of the Ice Hockey Federation of Russia (FHR).
As Stu Hackel at the NY Times Slap Shot blog notes, Murley is still under contract to the Carolina Hurricanes, and as recently as October 15th the KHL’s President Alexander Medvedev stated that Murley was not yet cleared to play in their league. Nonetheless, Hackel points to a Russian stats site that indicates Murley has played in four games thus far.
The leading professional ice hockey leagues from Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Slovakia, Sweden and Switzerland (as an associated member) have established a new organization named “Hockey Europe”. The purpose of the Group and its founding members is to promote cooperation, amicable relations and unity of these Leagues and their member Clubs in a middle of the heavy heated competition between the new launched Russian Ice Hockey League KHL and the North-American NHL.
*my thanks to David for dropping me a note about this
Press Release from the KHL:
Resolutions of the Board of Directors of the Kontinental Hockey League
The Board of Directors of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) adopted a number of important resolutions at its October 21 meeting that are of great consequence to the future operations of the League. The meeting focused primarily on matters involving internal medical support services, first and foremost those concerning the medical monitoring of athletes.
Most significantly, the Board heard a preliminary report from a special KHL commission investigating the circumstances of the death of Omsk Avangard hockey player Alexei Cherepanov. As a result, the Board resolved to adopt a series of measures aimed at preventing future tragedies in hockey:
from Kevin Allen at Mucking and Grinding,
Former Atlanta Thrashers defenseman Mark Popovic became the latest NHL player to be lured away by the new Russian Super League, agreeing to play for St. Petersburg next season for approxately $1 million….
Bryan Berard, unable to secure a contract from any NHL team, has agreed to attend the Philadelphia Flyers’ training camp on a tryout basis. Berard, whose career was derailed several years ago when he was blinded by an errant stick, played last season for the New York Islanders
added 4:36pm, from the Delco Times,
“Bryan has been around a number of years now (and) he has been a good defenseman for quite some time,” said Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren. “I’m excited about Bryan’s willingness to come here on a try out. It will certainly pick up the competition level of what is going to take place in training camp anytime you can add a player like him.”
from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,
Left wing Ladislav Nagy views his decision to sign a $5.6 million, two-year deal to play in the Russian Super League as a temporary stop and not a long-term plan.
“Nagy fully intends to come back to the NHL if he can find a situation where he will be given the minutes in order to produce at the elite level he is capable of,” said his agent, Matt Keator….
“The level of talent in Russia is improving every year with top NHL players heading over there,” Keator said. “It has become a viable option for players to play at a high level and be very well compensated. As this league grows and matures, it will pose more and more competition to the NHL for players.”
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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.
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