Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Claire Wilson of the New York Times (Sunday edition), ...
Three years later, the N.H.L.’s new space is near completion: 133,000 square feet at 1185 Avenue of the Americas in Midtown Manhattan. The interior is a montage of materials and wintry colors that reflect the game of hockey, including the stainless steel of skate blades and the white of ice, said Frederic M. Strauss, principal in TPG Architecture of New York, the designers of the new offices.
Patterned glass evokes the bumpy pond ice that many players learn on; smooth transparent partitions suggest sleek professional rinks; hockey sticks decorate another partition; and frost generated from moisture in the air runs along the center of a brushed-steel beverage bar.
from Tom Lynn at Hockey Ops Blog,
Myth #1: Expansion has diluted the level of talent in the NHL
This is the popular fable of the myopic scribes who cover hockey in some of the oldest markets. As the story goes, in the “Original Six” NHL (there were actually eight teams originally, but this fact was somehow lost on them) there were so few spots available on the teams, the level of play was extremely high. This was their “Golden Age” of hockey, with so many (per capita) of the League’s players achieving legend status and enshrinement in the Hall of Fame. In 1951, the top five scorers in the NHL all ended up in the Hall of Fame (Howe, Richard, Bentley, Abel, and Schmidt). Later, so the fable goes, with the NHL expanding more and more, anyone who could lace up a pair of skates was eligible for an NHL roster spot. This reached its lowest point after the last expansion, to 30 teams, when the Wild and Columbus took to the NHL ice with players that offended the high sensibilities of the Fourth Estate and older columnists.
Like many myths, this one is based on a reasonable premise, but has the unfortunate quality of being completely false.
From Childs Walker at the Baltimore Sun,
A new arena is a poor risk for Baltimore if the city is counting on attracting an NHL or NBA franchise, sports business experts say, but some agree with city leaders that a proposed 18,500-seat venue could be profitable without such an anchor tenant.
Neither the NBA nor the NHL offers many relocation or expansion prospects, analysts said, and the presence of basketball and hockey teams in Washington make the odds even longer for Baltimore. [...]
NHL spokesman Frank Brown said the league has no plans for expansion or relocation, though several cities have expressed interest. He said questions about the Capitals’ sharing a market with another team are “way too hypothetical for me to answer.
From Charlie Teljeur at The Hockey News,
What would be a good analogy to describe the current state of Euro-NHL relations?
Maybe a chess match, in which one side – the NHL – has three Queens, five Knights, 12 Rooks and an infinite number of pawns. Europe is represented by a pair of rogue, but nicely dressed Bishops who feel they can move any direction they damn well please.
The National League – they’re the white side – have been hungrily swallowing up unlimited European talent since it was discovered Inge Hammerstrom wasn’t female and that she, er he, had a nice backhand.
Europe – playing the evil black role – occasionally jumps a pawn or two or sign a broken-down seen-better-days Queen (sorry, Jaromir) and waves said contract in the face of the “shocked” NHL, something akin to a pirate who steals your spare set of car keys.
from Dan Rosen at NHL.com,
Mark Messier is sitting on the sidelines these days, enjoying the early stages of his new life as a retired NHL legend. Even still, few of the game’s legends are as tuned in to today’s NHL as Messier.
He’s opinionated. He’s eloquent. He’s passionate.
NHL.com was lucky enough to hear Messier be all those things and more in an exclusive phone interview Monday morning. We asked him about free agency, the Detroit Red Wings, the Hockey Hall of Fame, the Winter Classic and a whole lot more….
NHL.com: Does four Cups in 11 years and having a core group of players — Nicklas Lidstrom, Kris Draper, Kirk Maltby, Darren McCarty and Tomas Holmstrom — playing on all four championship teams make the Detroit Red Wings a dynasty?
MM: You have to really respect what they have been able to do for a long period of time, without having great draft picks. To call it a dynasty — I don’t know.
From Stan Fischler at Game On,
While Yankee Stadium would appear to be a sure thing for the NHL’s 2010 outdoor game, much will depend on how well the 2009 Wrigley Field (Chicago-Detroit) Classic draws at the gate and on TV. Another hang-up could be negotiations with the Yankees over use of their new ballpark because it won’t be cheap.
Another battle will be over choice of the Rangers’ opponent. Guaranteed, the Islanders and Devils will fight hard to get into the act.
read on for notes on news all around the NHL
From the NY Islanders:
New York Islanders legend Mike Bossy will appear on Fox Business News’ morning show “Money For Breakfast” with host Alexis Glick on Wednesday from 7:00 AM – 9:00 am. Bossy will discuss the Islanders Business Club, the state of the Islanders corporate sponsorship and the NHL’s footprint in the business world.
“Talking to Alexis is going to be a fun time on Wednesday,” said Bossy. “It’s a great opportunity to tell the world about the Islanders Business Club and to talk about the state of the Islanders business affairs. I’m looking forward to it.”
Interview will be posted in the Fox Business video library, shortly after it appears on air.
From Eric McErlain at the Sporting News,
It was just last week that I warned that Russia’s nascent Kontinental Hockey League represented a legitimate threat to the way that the NHL did business.
Now, here we are just a week later, and the brewing competition between the two leagues over hockey talent—in particular Russian-born hockey talent—is threatening to escalate into a full-scale war.
Eric reviews the events of the past week, then further explores the long-term impact all this might have on the NHL.
From Lyle Richardson at The Hockey News,
The Philadelphia Flyers remain slightly above the $56.7 million salary cap for next season, leading to speculation GM Paul Holmgren will consider shopping a right winger, since he’s got plenty of depth at that position.
Joffrey Lupul was considered a potential candidate given his $2.3 million cap hit for next season, but given recent reports that he’s close to signing a new four-year contract with the Flyers, he’s probably staying put.
Other trade candidates could include Mike Knuble, Scottie Upshall or Steve Downie. Knuble’s $2.8 million cap hit for next season makes him the likely candidate.
And check out James Mirtle’s list of remaining free agents.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
The unwritten rule of the NHL ownership club is no secrets, or, at least, no secrets from the big guy. When Tom Hicks (Dallas) and George Gillette (Montreal) decided to go in on a little soccer team called Liverpool, they weren’t bound by the rules to tell Bettman, but they did regardless because it was the right thing to do.
ESPN.com has learned, that is all going to change come fall, when owners will be instructed by the NHL to reveal their financial relationships with other owners. It probably should have been done before and the errors in judgment from AEG and Leipold in the Del Biaggio mess revealed that flaw in a way that embarrasses themselves as much as the NHL.
Had Leipold or AEG bothered to tell Bettman what they were doing, one has to believe the deal would have been put on hold regardless of how badly Bettman and the rest wanted the sale done. The integrity of the league and Bettman’s leadership demands it, and given his handling of the Samueli matter, we are prepared to accept that.
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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