Kukla's Korner Hockey
“We didn’t interfere with the players. We had five calls in the final game, they were all restraining fouls. There were no roughing fouls, no scrums. The first and third periods of Game 7 were the fastest of the whole series. The players were able to skate freely. The credit goes to the players and coaches.”
-game 7 ref Bill McCreary. More from McCreary from Jeff Z. Klein of SlapShot at the NY Times.
Certified appraisers at Cash4Gold, America’s #1 buyer of precious metals direct from the general public, have studied photographs of the famed 35-pound trophy. They estimate that it might contain as much as $7,500 worth of silver, assuming that the trophy is 100% silver.
Given that the Stanley Cup is one of the most distinguished trophies in sports, its worth most likely outweighs the melt value that the piece would command if it were sent to Cash4Gold. Melt value refers to the value of actual precious metal contained in an item that a refinery can extract and recycle. Melt value does not account for the decorative, artistic, historic, or sentimental value of a given item.
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
• One reason to wonder about Red Wings coach Mike Babcock as the choice for Canadian Olympic hockey coach: The Olympics are one-game playoffs. And the one thing Babcock didn’t do well in Game 6 or 7 against the Penguins was adjust. His team needed to get pucks in deep and to the net, especially in the second half of Game 7, and stubbornly his players kept trying to carry it through crowds, turned it over and generated little offence.
• The only way the Anaheim Ducks steal defenceman Jack Johnson and an early first-round pick from L.A. for diminishing asset Chris Pronger is if Kings general manager Dean Lombardi happens to lose his mind.
more hockey notes…
First off, a few days of relaxed posting, then we turn our attention to the NHL Awards Show in Vegas and the NHL Entry Draft in Montreal.
Shortly after the NHL Draft, the UFA signing period begins. Then hopefully, maybe late July or early August, I can take a vacation, the first one in four years!!!
from Jeff Z. Klein and Stu Hackel of the New York Times,
Because most N.H.L. teams try to copy the formula of the Stanley Cup champions, the Penguins’ victory could signal a continued movement from the defense-oriented tactics that dominated the N.H.L. after the Devils won the Cup in 1995.And yet a curious shift in the officiating during the finals loosened the zero-tolerance posture on obstruction penalties that referees had used for the last four seasons. Infractions like hooking, holding, tripping and interference were staples of the dead-puck era, among the tactics used to restrain skill and shift the game’s delicate balance in favor of defenses.
In the six games of last season’s finals, 30 obstruction penalties were called. Through six games this year, only 16 had been called. Four more were called in Game 7, for a total of 20.
The players and coaches had no problem with the officiating. It will be interesting to see if this slackening of rigorous enforcement signals a new standard for next season.
more on the Penguins, Wings and the NHL overall…
From Eric Duhatschek at the Globe & Mail:
Once in a while, these long-term commitments between team and player develop into a happily-ever relationship that works for both parties.
On a great many other occasions, however, the marriages don’t work out the way they imagined – and the price of divorce is high.
In the next fortnight – or from the time of Friday night’s seventh game of the Stanley Cup final until the first day of the entry draft in Montreal two weeks from now – NHL trade talks will heat up.
Increasingly, virtually every one of these possible transactions is going to be filtered through money, money invested in the flush of the last two free-agent frenzies that has not paid good dividends.
Contracts that were signed amid great hopes and expectations and – for reasons of injury, underperformance, or just the simple lack of a good fit – have backfired will now be shopped around the league, to see if there’s a willing trading partner.
more with a list of the 10 worst contracts in the NHL right now
From John Buccigross at ESPN:
Game 7 equals …
• The bond of father and son, their shared-logo T-shirt and their shared stomach of nerves as the puck is about to be dropped Friday night. Stomachs in Pennsylvania and Michigan will feel as though they just ate five pounds of grapes.
• The pride and passion of two rust-belt cities mortgaging a portion of their summer moods pending the result of a 60-minute hockey game. Whoever wins Friday night, it will matter much to the proud and soulful people of Detroit and Pittsburgh. The Cup will feel warm and welcomed at either victory party.
from Cheryl Ryan of The Metric System,
I love hockey and like most hockey fans, I’ve been actively following the NHL playoffs, including the Stanley Cup finals that started at the end of May. While watching the finals, I couldn’t help but notice some of the advertisements that played during the intermissions and the three commercial breaks each period. I sat through the standard beer commercials (Bud Light, Miller Lite, Amstel Light to name a few) and the US military commercials (Army, Marines) without paying much attention, but then some Cisco commercials came up. These commercials were a bit of a surprise to me, since I wouldn’t expect a strong overlap of between hockey fans and videoconferencing enthusiasts. I also remembered that Cisco heavily advertises on the NHL.com website.
As I watched more and more of these Cisco commercials, with about one appearing during each commercial break, I became very curious about why Cisco would choose the SC finals to advertise their new products. I decided to look into the demographics of NHL fans to see if Cisco knew something I didn’t. Not surprisingly, they did: the makeup of the NHL fanbase.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
The NHL had better be careful on how much it demands in relocation and indemnification fees for the Phoenix Coyotes to move to Hamilton or it could be left empty-handed after a move is ordered by the courts, says an expert in sports economics and law from Stanford University.
Roger Noll, an economics professor at Stanford, said Thursday that indemnification fees, which would be paid to teams when another team enters its territory, are not allowed under U.S. law….
“I’m sure the NHL knows it’s on legally shaky ground,” Noll said, suggesting Daly’s talk of an indemnification fee was a negotiating ploy. “The NHL wants to get paid something. They want to have something to distribute to the other clubs as a result.”
from Jim Kelley of Sportsnet,
Bettman gets crucified, sometimes in media, sometimes from members of his own ownership group for the league’s bastardized TV approach in the U.S., but one can argue it’s starting to take hold.
NBC has been getting good to very good ratings for the games and Versus has had franchise record numbers and is starting to grow to the critical mass the league needs. It’s not ESPN mass as Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz recently pointed out in a not-so-glowing assessment of the league’s TV ventures in the states, but even Mr. Wirtz, a newbie to the owners chair despite a family history in the game, should understand that there’s a history that needs to be understood.
The perception is that the NHL walked out on ESPN, but the truth is the sports giant put the league to the curb. After a few years of trying to make it go, ESPN and hockey had gone nowhere together and the company was offering the league the same deal that NBC had on the table. The highlight for them being a zero rights fee.
The company was betting that the league would take it because not being on ESPN was thought to be a death blow for the sport.
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