Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
The funny thing is, the Maple Leafs would have had Brunnstrom in their organization already if they’d simply listened to the advice of Thommie Bergman, their very capable director of European scouting….
The only proviso was that everyone involved, including Bergman, agreed Brunnstrom’s best development path would be through the Swedish Elite League and the Farjestad program rather than the NHL or the minors.
Leaf management, led by GM John Ferguson and assistant GM Mike Penny, thought otherwise. They were unwilling to sign Brunnstrom unless he was willing to play for the Toronto Marlies of the American League and the Leafs refused to budge.
from Pierre LeBrun of Sportsnet,
As many as 20 NHL teams have shown serious interest in the 22-year-old Swedish forward this season. He’s an unrestricted free agent in terms of his NHL rights because he went undrafted. He’s a late bloomer and has really come on in the past 12 months. He has 30 points in 36 games with Farjestads of the Swedish Elite League this season.
“He’s oozing skill, a great playmaker with lots of upside,” one NHL executive told Sportsnet.ca. “He won’t take the NHL by storm right away, but he’ll grow into a quality first- or second-line forward.”
Brunnstrom recently gave his agent, J.P. Barry of CAA Sports, a short list of five teams to begin negotiating with.
The NHL and representatives of the IIHF have agreed to additional restrictions when it comes to young European players coming over to play in the NHL.
Following the five hour meeting with representatives of the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Slovakia and Sweden, both sides agreed that a player who is still under contract with an IIHF team and has not reached his 20th birthday must be first offered back to his team in Europe. The new proposal sees the age limit increased by two years.
from Pierre LeBrun of the CP via Yahoo,
“It went well today,” Daly told The Canadian Press on Wednesday night. “We went through our respective views of what was transpiring and the possible causes. We share the same concern with respect to too many young players coming to North America before they are ready to play in the NHL. We talked about possible ways to address it. We have conceived of a possible short-term interim framework to give us more time for us to evaluate what’s going on in the market place.
“That framework is subject to all of the parties going back to their respective constituencies to discuss its merits.”
From CBS Sports wire,
Karalahti is one of 19 suspects in a widespread case of alleged smuggling and distribution of amphetamines in Finland, officials said. He will face trial in the Vantaa prison court near Helsinki on Jan. 29, the Espoo Regional Court said without announcing the exact charges.
Local media have reported that the 32-year-old Karalahti was linked to a drug smuggling network that imported and distributed drugs in Finland in July. Karalahti was taken off the ice for police questioning during a practice session last month with his Karpat team.
Karalahti left the NHL before the beginning of the 2002-03 season after being suspended for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.
from the New York Times,
N.H.L. executives and officials of the International Ice Hockey Federation will meet Wednesday in New York for talks on a new agreement governing international player transfers….
The I.I.H.F. delegation will be led by the federation president, René Fasel, who will arrive from Sunday’s European Club Championship final in St. Petersburg, Russia, between Sparta Prague and Metallurg Magnitogorsk. Fasel said that if a new agreement could not be negotiated, “chaos” could ensue when the current deal expired at the end of the season. He said N.H.L. teams would be free to raid European rosters throughout the year while paying nothing for the signings.
read on and a feature on Caps dman Mike Green.
Slap Shot at the NYT has all the details…
Slap Shot blog at the NYT will be live blogging the Sweden/Russia WJC game which starts at 10:00am ET today.
To follow the play-by-play commentary of the World Junior Championship semifinal match, LIVE, as it happens at the ČEZ Arena in Pardubice, Czech Republic, click “more” and then refresh like crazy. Jeff Z. Klein describes the action.
Don’t forget this game and the USA/Canada game at 2:00pm can be viewed on TSN and the NHL Network in the USA.
Brad Holland of NHL.com is working hard, covering the WJC in Prague!!!
A nice quiet New Years, with the people I love in a foreign country. Sounds nice, safe, and quiet, doesn’t it? I thought so.
A photo of our group, who braved the cold and the crowds in the Prague to take in the downtown fireworks, is on the group profile.
What I wasn’ prepared for was perhaps the most amazing, awe-inspiring, incredible disregard for public safety in my life. The result? Well, I can’t lie…
It was the best fireworks display I’d ever seen.
Brad is 2nd from the left in the picture and you can read all of his WJC blogs here.
from the blog of Jamie McLennan at the Hockey News,
We have also been experiencing some neat things here. The first night here the team threw a party for us at a local restaurant. The whole organization, including coaches, managers as well as company executives, were present and they proceeded to welcome us with speeches and some of the local traditional drinks (Sake).
It was quite exciting until they asked us to stand up and make a speech. The quickest thing I could come up with was having the translator explain how Nasher would need a windshield off an old car for a visor.
The boys seemed to enjoy that as we proceeded to the next stop, a karaoke bar, where we dominated the microphone for hours.
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