Kukla's Korner Hockey
Let’s Play Hockey does a Q & A with Minnesota Wild Owner Craig Leipold…
LPH: There have been media reports of a possible lockout/strike when the current CBA expires which stems from the unrest within the NHLPA ranks, what are your thoughts?
CL: We have a great relationship with their union. There may be some unrest within the NHLPA. The NHLPA cannot do anything for two years when the existing CBA expires. The current issues with the Players Association have nothing to do with the current CBA or ownership.
LPH: The Phoenix Coyotes’ situation seems to be ever changing, do you believe they will play in Glendale, AZ all season?
CL: Yes. I believe they will be playing NHL hockey in Glendale, Arizona, this year.
LPH: Any news on the National TV front?
CL: The NHL and VERSUS made a commitment to each other. The NHL likes VERSUS. Other opportunities may come up in the future and we will take a look at those broadcast opportunities at that time.
from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
Wild center Benoit Pouliot has lost his driver’s license for a year after being found guilty of drunken driving Monday in an Ontario court room.
Pouliot, 22, was also fined $1,828 for operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration level over the legal limit and refusing to provide police with a second breath sample.
ST. PAUL/MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – The National Hockey League’s (NHL) Minnesota Wild today unveiled a new third jersey for the upcoming 2009-10 NHL season at a public event held at the Minnesota State Fair’s FAN Central building.
After months of buzz and speculation among Wild fans, the new third jersey was finally revealed today by left wing Derek Boogaard. Based in the Wild’s Forest Green with Wheat trim and a hint of Iron Range Red, the jersey’s classic sports look was the overwhelming favorite of Wild fans surveyed during the summer of 2008. The jersey crest features a script “Minnesota” with “WILD” emblazoned below.
continued including a picture gallery…
from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,
I cannot make this any clearer. Other than what I reported to you near the Draft, all Dany Heatley/Wild trade rumors you read have been invented out of thin air. Unless something changes, the Wild has not had trade talks with Ottawa in six weeks regarding Heatley. Additionally, the Wild has no interest in Mike Comrie, I’ve been told.
So, in conclusion, the current roster will likely still be the roster at the start of camp, but by late September, there’s a decent chance GM Chuck Fletcher will have the ability to make some alterations.
more on the Wild…
from Todd Kimberely at NHL.com,
The club’s 23-man roster saw its fair share of movement. The biggest move was Gaborik leaving for the Rangers, with Martin Havlat arriving as his big-dollar replacement.
And Leipold himself has gone on record with his belief that an accelerated style of play will also boost the Wild’s profile, allowing the club to attract top-end free agents who shied away from the Wild’s previously conservative, plodding pace.
“In the past I’ve been frustrated, not knowing why those unrestricted free agents, people who have the ability to move where they want to, wouldn’t choose this as their home,” said Leipold. “I think the system might have been something that held them back. I believe Chuck feels that way ... I think this may be the missing piece. Maybe they’ll look at us in a different light now.”
via NHL Twitter,
Josh Harding re-signs with Wild
added 11:45, via Michael Russo’s Twitter,
Wild re-signs Josh Harding to one-year deal prior to arbitration hearing
SAINT PAUL/MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – Minnesota Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has named Brent Flahr Assistant General Manager. Flahr will oversee all aspects of player development and evaluation and assist Fletcher in player personnel decisions, contract negotiations and league related issues.
“Brent is one of the top talent evaluators in the NHL and was an integral member of Anaheim’s scouting staff on their 2007 Stanley Cup team,” said Fletcher.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
“It was an interesting choice,” said Koivu. “We spoke to Minnesota a few times. All the talks went well, but it was more for personal reasons that I didn’t feel comfortable ... I felt that Minnesota was Mikko’s place at this point. I wanted him to have his own privacy in a way, make his own name and his own career. I just felt there were too many risks for us as brothers and as family members to join the same team and compete for the same ice time. I felt we were better off playing somewhere else.”
more from Koivu plus Zubov is up to a new challenge and has talked to 6-7 teams…
from John Shipley of the Pioneer Press, “
Obviously, there was no decision for me because the Wild decided to go a different route,” Gaborik said. “Obviously, I would consider any offer, but I didn’t get any from the new era. I’m a Ranger now, and I’m very excited about that and looking forward to that new opportunity.”
from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
The team continues to be patient as free-agent center Saku Koivu takes his time deciding where he will sign. It’s not looking good with Minnesota, and it doesn’t appear to be so much about money as a concern about playing with his brother, Mikko.
“We’ve put a lot of conversations and time into it,” GM Chuck Fletcher said. “Whatever decision he makes, I’m sure they’ll be for good reasons.”
If Saku Koivu doesn’t sign and Fletcher can’t make a trade, coach Todd Richards believes Pierre-Marc “Bouchard can be that guy” at No. 2 center.
more Wild talk…
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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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