Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jeff Blair of the Globe and Mail,
I have no problem with the fact the Toronto Maple Leafs want to play host to the NHL All-Star Game, as much of a fraudulent cash grab disguised as an afternoon skate as it is anyhow. But, honestly: by what stretch does BMO Field deserve to be the site of the annual outdoor game, an event that has had a surprising shelf life and if nothing else seems to be about the only time during the year anybody in the U.S. watches the game? Putting the game in as non-descript a facility as BMO Field would cheapen the event – although I’m sure that’s the only way the word “cheap” would be associated with it, since the mind boggles at how much Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment will charge for the game.
from Tom Gulitti of Fire & Ice,
Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur is among those hoping the NHL general managers decide at their meetings over the next two days to remove the trapezoid behind the nets.
The trapezoid was implemented in the NHL following the 2004-05 lockout to limit the goaltenders from handling the puck in the corners behind the net. It begins at the goal line with angled lines six feet from each goal post and widens to 28 feet at the end boards.
Former Flyers general manager Bobby Clarke was one of the leaders in getting the trapezoid implemented. It was commonly known as the “Martin Brodeur rule” because it was clearly aimed at the Devils netiminder, who was one of the best at getting behind the net to handle the puck.
But, now general managers are looking for ways to cut down on the number of injuries on defensemen who are being hit hard by forechecking fowards.
added 5:01pm, via Darren Dreger’s Twitter,
NHL gm’s discussed removal of the trapezoid, but have decided to leave it in.
from Shawn P. Roarke of NHL.com,
For Gretzky, Monday night was not about the fallout from the sale of the Phoenix franchise, but rather a celebration of the career achievements of the Hall of Fame inductees—Luc Robitaille, Brian Leetch, Steve Yzerman and Brett Hull.
“It is what it is right now,” Gretzky said. “Right now, it’s just my time to sit back and enjoy my kids. You know what? The game is bigger than any individual or any person. Right now, it is just not a part of my life. It’s as simple as that.”
And, contrary to the speculation, he says he harbors no bitterness.
“No, not at all,” Gretzky said. “What’s there to be upset by? It’s the greatest game in the world. There’s nothing better than our sport. I’m very proud of it. Life goes on.”
from Tim Wharnsby of CBC,
Lou Lamoriello’s 67-year-old eyes did not deceive him. He did see Wayne Gretzky in his downtown Toronto hotel lobby on Monday morning, and the Great One will attend the Hockey Hall of Fame formal proceedings in the evening, according to Gretzky’s agent, Darren Blake.
Whether Gretzky will grace the induction ceremony with his presence in the Great Hall has been a talking point surrounding this year’s festivities.
from Elliotte Friedman of CBC,
Well, it doesn’t take a lot to cause a maelstrom in Montreal and Allan Walsh’s twitter sure accomplished that on Saturday night.
In case you missed it, after the loss to Tampa, Walsh pointed out Price is 10-32 in his last 42 starts. His numbers are slightly off, but the only question that matters is: What does Jaroslav Halak think about this?
Walsh has one responsibility here, and that’s to his client. No one would be surprised if Halak, who doesn’t seem the type to create shockwaves, is beyond frustrated with his status in the organization. On merit, he deserves more opportunity, but Price is a first-rounder and Halak went 271st. It’s not always fair, but it happens.
The difference between hockey and other sports is that this usually happens in private.
continued and much more hockey talk from Elliotte…
from Damian Cox of the Toronto Star,
So, with the NHL’s general managers – the rulemakers – meeting this week in town, there’s some expectation they’ll recommend a rule change to address either or both issues.
Like a ban on head shots? Or a non-bodychecking zone on the ice?
Not likely. No, a guessing man would look for an appropriate half-measure.
Like getting rid of the trapezoid behind the net.
Yeah, that’s the kind of move the GMs would like. Simple, not drastic.
Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail also contributes to the topic,
Detroit Red Wings GM Ken Holland may advance a compromise plan to bridge the gap between the league’s hawks and doves. His view – echoed this week by Toronto coach Ron Wilson – suggests that for a straight-on collision, the onus remains on the puck carrier to protect himself, but on a hit from the blind side, the responsibility shifts to the player delivering the contact, on the grounds that the intended target is most vulnerable when he doesn’t see contact coming. Makes almost too much sense to be adopted unilaterally without a major brawl.
more hockey talk…
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
• Please don’t quote me, but it appears as if Jacques Lemaire is back where he belongs, behind the bench in New Jersey, able to get more out of what appears to be less.
• Now it’s the Blue Jackets who need the public to chip in their tax dollars in order to ensure that the privately owned franchise that caps its employees’ wages remains in place. The NHL is filled with franchises that simply cannot produce enough revenue to thrive and please, please, let’s not always blame “the lease.”
There is no doubt in my mind whatsoever that the league would be in substantially better condition had it adopted a meaningful luxury tax plan with those proceeds plus revenue share money flowing to small market teams, instead of the hard cap.
But then the NHL wouldn’t have its cost certainty, under which the only certainty is that small-market, U.S.-based clubs always will be on life-support.
• I’m sorry, but Phil Kessel became Frank Mahovlich, when?
more NHL talk including Brooks taking on the head shots debate…
Pierre LeBrun, Mike Milbury and David Shoalts join Ron MacLean on the HNIC Hotstove.
Make sure to check out the “fight-helmet” Pierre introduces.
added 11:10pm A recap of the Hotstove talk at CBC if you wish to read instead of watch.
A quick update to let you know NHL Network (U.S.) will be broadcasting the 2009 Hockey Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Monday, November 9th beginning at 7:00pm ET.
They will also be covering the NHL GM Meeting in Toronto with a special on-site edition of NHL Live! broadcast at noon – 2:00pm ET on Tuesday, November 10th. NHL Network Canada & U.S. will also carry a special 30-minute show from 6:00 – 6:30pm. ET, repeated from 6:30 – 7:00pm ET.
Even if Peter Forsberg plays in the Karjala Cup as he plans to and then decides to sign with a team in the NHL, there will be no waiver requirements on him per Bill Daly who was kind enough to respond to an email inquiry from me.
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.
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