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Category: International-Hockey

Team Canada Announces Coaching Staff For Men’s Olympic Team

from IIHF.com,

The coaching staff was named by Canada’s National Men’s Team management group, comprised of executive director Steve Yzerman (Tampa Bay), along with Doug Armstrong (St. Louis), Ken Holland (Detroit), Kevin Lowe (Edmonton), Bob Nicholson (Hockey Canada) and Brad Pascall (Hockey Canada).

Babcock, Hitchcock and Ruff were all members of the Canadian men’s hockey coaching staff at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver where Canada won its eighth Olympic gold medal.

The 2014 Olympic Winter Games run from Feb. 6-23, with the men’s ice hockey tournament going from Feb. 12-23.

“Canada’s coaching staff has a great deal of international and professional experience for the challenge that awaits us in Sochi,” said Yzerman. “Mike did a great job setting the foundation for our gold medal win in Vancouver, and I know that with Ken, Claude and Lindy working with him, our team will be very well prepared.”

read on

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: team+canada

Team USA And Team Canada Will Announce Orientation Camp Rosters On Monday

 

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  Tags: team+canada, team+usa

Big Dreams For International Hockey

from Chris Johnston of Sportsnet,

The rebirth of the World Cup tournament for 2015 is also on the horizon, as are expanded forays into Europe by the NHL. Those will include more regular-season games on that continent along with the expansion of the Victoria Cup concept, which pits NHL teams against the champions of European leagues.

In fact, the NHL is so committed to growing its product internationally that it plans to open a staffed European office by the end of 2013, according to a source.

These are exciting times for those who love international hockey.

As difficult as the Olympic negotiation process proved to be in recent months, there seemed to be genuine optimism coming from the NHL, NHL Players’ Association and International Ice Hockey Federation following Friday’s announcement about the Sochi Games.

With those groups showing a spirit of co-operation, it left some of the most powerful men in the sport dreaming big.

“I hope that this is the first step in a multi-year deal, which will involve World Cups, Victoria Cups and other new events internationally,” Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson told sportsnet.ca. “I think that there is a great opportunity for the IIHF, NHL and NHLPA.”

more

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Troubles In Sochi

from Dave Feschuk of the Toronto Star,

But if Canada is of the belief it’s got Olympic problems — and the impending National Goaltending Crisis is no small thing — it should be comforting to know that the overseers of the Sochi Games have a far more daunting set of challenges in their view. Sochi’s woes go well beyond the hard-to-fathom fact that Russia’s first crack at hosting a Winter Games is being planned for a subtropical seaside locale that makes balmy Vancouver look like Siberia. To tackle that problem, organizers have reportedly stored a winter’s worth of snow should none fall in February.

As for the ever-expanding raft of other issues — well, the solutions might not be as cold and soft.

Less than seven months from the opening ceremony, the 2014 Olympics are already promising to be one of the most controversial in history — and that’s just among the folks in the accounting department. Various reports suggest that the costs of the Games have careered out of control. The price to run Sochi, initially budgeted at $12 billion, is said to have reached $50 billion according to a recent article in The Economist. (The Vancouver Olympics, by contrast, billed out at about $9 billion.) There are accusations that widespread corruption is gobbling up large chunks of this cash. Critics of Vladimir Putin are already suggesting that the Russian president’s most famous act of sporting larceny is no longer the petty pocketing of Robert Kraft’s Super Bowl ring.

Boris Nemtsov, an opposition leader, has called Sochi “an unprecedented thieves’ caper.”

As Garry Kasparov, the Russian chess master turned politician, tweeted in the wake of The Economist report: “I never doubted (Putin) and his cronies would ‘take the gold’!”

read on

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: 2014+winter+olympics

Afternoon Line

“Although there were many details to discuss with our partners at the NHL and NHLPA, there was never any doubt in my mind that we would not continue the tradition from Nagano, Salt Lake City, Turin and Vancouver.”

“The modern Olympic era is about sportive competition on the highest possible level. This is what fans around the world expect from a 100-metre race or downhill skiing and this is also what they are entitled to expect from our sport.”

“It is the obligation of the IIHF towards our fans that the biggest sports show on earth has the best players and towards our member associations that they are able to select the best players that their educational systems have developed. I would like to thank NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA Executive Director Don Fehr for their co-operation.”

-IIHF President and IOC Executive Committee Member René Fasel.  More from the IIHF.

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  Tags: rene+fasel

Agreement Reached Allowing NHL Players At The 2014 Olympic Winter Games

NEW YORK/TORONTO (July 19, 2013) -- The National Hockey League Players' Association (NHLPA) and the National Hockey League (NHL) announced today that an agreement has been reached with the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to secure participation of NHL players in the upcoming 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.

NHL players will be available to the 12 participating IIHF Member National Associations for the men's Olympic ice hockey tournament (February 12-23, 2014). This will mark the fifth consecutive time dating back to Nagano 1998 that NHL players have participated in the Olympics. More than 120 NHL players are expected to compete for their respective nations in Sochi.

"The National Hockey League features the most international player population in professional sports, and our outstanding athletes take tremendous pride in representing their homelands on the global stage," NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. "The decision to participate in the XXII Olympic Winter Games in Sochi was in many ways a difficult one, but one that we know will be well received by our Players and, most importantly, by the vast majority of our fans and sports fans everywhere."

Continue Reading »

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Evening Line

On the 2014 Sochi Olympics: “Even if I was offered a role (to promote the Games), I wouldn’t take it. At this point, I want nothing to do with Russian hockey. There are a lot of people who come to the hockey world in Russia who don’t have any idea. It’s all family relationships: ‘I got this job, I can get you a job on this team, too,’ and that person doesn’t know anything about hockey. It’s pretty much if you get hurt in the KHL, you get traded or bought out. You expect that. They’re not developing players or teams, they’re running a business.”

-Alex Kovalev.  Read much more on and from Kovalev by Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+kovalev

Saturday Night Hockey Talk In July

from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

- What does Mike Babcock do with his centres on Team Canada. Sidney Crosby, check. Jonathan Toews, check. John Tavares, check. Patrice Bergeron, check. And does that mean Steven Stamkos, Eric Staal, Ryan Getzlaf and Logan Couture are all playing the wing. Those have to be eight of Team Canada’s forwards, don’t they, assuming an Olympic announcement ever gets made.

- Teams that could use Tim Thomas, assuming he’s not completely lost his body and mind: Colorado, Edmonton, Calgary, Florida, Dallas and maybe Pittsburgh ... And no, he won’t be going to Washington for any kind of visists.

- The rumblings out of Ottawa, which are much more than rumblings, tell a story of a Senators team almost out of money and of an owner, Eugene Melnyk, in trouble. Stay tuned: Melnyk may be losing more than Daniel Alfredsson ... And just when I was starting to fall in love — in a hockey way — with Alfredsson, he bolted Ottawa. And now I can resume not caring about him anymore.

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Olympic Meeting Update

Today the NHL, NHLPA, IIHF and IOC met in NYC...

 

 

added 4:29pm, Watch below as Bettmand and IIHF President Rene Fasel discuss today's meeting.

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Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: 2014+winter+olympics

Canada’s Goaltending Problems

from Jordan Heath-Rawlings of Sportsnet,

A newspaper headline in early May summed the situation up: “Mike Smith makes case for Canada’s 2014 Olympic team.” And somewhere, Patrick Roy, Ed Belfour or Brodeur did a spit-take with their morning cornflakes. Mike Smith? The 31-year-old laid out a biography that would, to put it politely, make him unique among NHLers who have worn the red-and-white in an Olympic crease in recent years: “I played a year in the East Coast League, four years in the minors and found my way to the NHL,” Smith reflected. “It was an endurance race for me. Not a sprint.” That a goalie with Smith’s modest pedigree can so easily join the discussion is a clear indication that the blue ice that once belonged to blue-chippers may now be an open competition, claimed by whoever enters February 2014 with the hottest glove hand.

So where does that leave Steve Yzerman’s Team Canada? Grasping at Crawfords. And Devan Dubnyks. And James Reimers. Good players all, and they might not be bad Olympic goalies. But there’s no evidence they’ll be great ones. It’s an uncomfortable feeling for Canadian hockey fans—but we should have seen it coming. Of the past 15 Vezina Trophy nominees, just three were Canadian—Steve Mason in 2009, Brodeur in 2010 and Luongo in 2011. The 2013 award marks the second straight year without a Canadian nomination, and the fifth without a win.

As a whole, the 36 Canadian netminders who made an NHL appearance this season combined for a 2.58 GAA and a .911 SP. The American, Russian, Finnish and Swedish goalie contingents all had better numbers. And Canadians were increasingly playing smaller roles. Though they made up 43.9 percent of NHL netminders, Canadians played just 38.5 percent of the games. (Finns, in contrast, represented 9.8 percent of goalies and played 14.4 percent of the games.) A decade ago, that wasn’t the case—the Czechs, thanks largely to the work of the sublime Dominik Hasek, were the only nation with comparable on-ice goaltending stats, and Canadians represented 57.1 percent of the goalies while playing 58 percent of the games. Two decades ago, there weren’t even enough non-Canadian goaltenders to make a fair comparison. It’s not just that Canada’s no longer the only fish in the pond, it’s that the other fish are growing rapidly.

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com

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