Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Globe and Mail,
Stephen Walkom has decided to haul his referee’s sweater out of mothballs.
Walkom, who had his 46th birthday on August 8, is stepping down as the NHL’s director of officiating with the intent of staying with the league as an on-ice official, a league source confirmed Tuesday. Walkom is expected to be at the NHL officials training camp which begins on Sept. 7. It’s believed that when Walkom accepted the executive position during the 2004-05 NHL lockout that it was on the condition that he would be allowed to return as an on-ice official if/when he made that decision.
Off to my annual physical and I hope to be back around noon today.
Feel free to discuss anything hockey related in the comments below.
update 1:15pm, Well everything looks very good and I appreciate your well wishes.
I have to do a follow-up tomorrow then I can get back to hockey until next August!
from Bruce Dowbiggin of the Globe and Mail,
There was a time when discreet, private assassination was the preferred method of blackballing a sports rival such as Balsillie, the Research In Motion billionaire. But the subtler arts have given way to a more public process of story leaks, open letters and good-old intemperate media availabilities with reporters.
When NHL commissioner Gary Bettman declared that a queue-jumping Balsillie was not grovelling, er, dignified enough to own an NHL franchise (losing scads of money in Nashville or Phoenix being more dignified than making piles of dough in Hamilton), the battle for hockey hearts and minds went directly to the media and the blogosphere.
more plus other hockey notes including some XM Home Ice changes…
I had a great time on Beaver Island even though the weather was a bit cool and drizzly at times.
Enjoyed getting back to nature for a few days and even enjoyed a concert by the Screaming Orphans (make sure to check out their multimedia page).
I was sorry to hear about the death of Jose Theodore’s infant son and my prayers go out to his family.
Both Dany Heatley and Bryan Murray talked, but what happens next is anyone’s guess.
I am still receiving “panic emails” from readers, waiting for that trade to be made. I am going to refer you to someithing I wrote on August 4th at my NHL.com blog...
I know fans want their team’s roster wrapped up in a little red bow so they can have a sense of relief that all is well and they can look forward to the upcoming season. Having the satisfaction of “the team is set” in early August is not going to happen. Those of us that live and die with our team are experiencing a little nervousness right about now, waiting for something to happen—and happen soon.
We know what moves need to be made, but frankly, many of those moves may not come until we get much closer to early September, and some of our hopeful moves may not be seen as a necessity by the GM, so we just may have to live with what we have.
One more thing. It looks like changes coming in Tampa according to David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
Those close to Len Barrie say he is likely to throw in the towel on his one-year run as co-owner of the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning next Saturday, clearing the way for (sparring) partner Oren Koules to take over.
from Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star,
Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie devised a “self-serving scheme” to put the Coyotes into bankruptcy in order to force it to be relocated, according to documents filed by the NHL into bankruptcy court yesterday.
Further, according to the NHL’s document, Balsillie “co-opted” Phoenix owner Jerry Moyes into his plan “with an offer of cash, which Mr. Moyes was only too eager to take.”
The NHL made its claim in a document filed to support its contention that Bill Daly, the league’s deputy commissioner, should manage the business affairs of the Coyotes, rather than Moyes, and a bankruptcy trustee should replace Moyes at the team’s helm.
from Tim Sassone of the Chicago Daily-Herald,
Paul Kelly, executive director of the NHL Players Association, said he would be surprised if the investigation of Marian Hossa’s contract with the Blackhawks resulted in a ruling against the team.
“Based upon everything that we know, those contracts are perfectly valid and proper under the terms of the (collective bargaining agreement),” Kelly said, speaking Tuesday at the USA Hockey Olympic camp in Woodridge.
... I was able to put together my blog at NHL.com this morning.
from Tom Reed of Puck-rakers at the Columbus Dispatch, .
..the NHL still cannot cut a deal with its old broadcast partner, ESPN. The network helped the league gain popularity in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It also stuck with the NHL in the early part of this decade when the game had become almost unwatchable due to the un-penalized obstruction.
Post-lockout hockey is an entertaining product, but the casual sports fan—the one the NHL needs to attract—isn’t programmed to search it out.
There are things I don’t like about ESPN, but it lends credibility to a sport. The league can tout its improved ratings on Versus, but it’s not a destination channel.
added 12:44pm, Sean Leahy of Puck Daddy has some suggestions for the NHL Network.
Fan590 in Toronto just reported Ted “Teeder” Kennedy has passed away.
“It has been a relatively busy summer with free agency and some trades. It’s died down a bit and I think you’ve seen some GMs show restraint and patience, but there’s still been some big deals out there. I think once the [Dany] Heatley situation is resolved too, you will see more trades and signings as well as when camp gets closer, teams will need to address cap issues and fill out rosters. It will heat up soon.”
-Paul Kelly, Executive Director of the NHLPA. More about Kelly from James Murphy at NESN.
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