Kukla's Korner Hockey
COMMISSIONER BETTMAN: Let me add my voice in welcoming you to the 02. It is an incredibly impressive facility, arena. All the other aspects of this facility, surrounding it, are really state-of-the-art, really cutting edge. It’s a delight for us to be here.
I’ve had a little bit of time to interact with fans. I’ve met a number of people from Los Angeles and from Orange County. I’ve seen fans from other places in Europe. Met some fans from Finland and Sweden.
For us, this was an opportunity to dip our toe in the water in Europe, take what we believe is the most international of the North American sports, and bring it to the other side of the Atlantic. And while, obviously, London and England may not be the strongest hockey markets in the world, it puts us in closer proximity to markets and people have traveled here.
CanWest sports reporter Cory Wolfe gets personal with a sports figure. Today, NHL linesman Mike Cvik - all six foot nine of him - gets cornered.
CanWest: Describe a time when you got caught in the crossfire of a hockey fight.
Cvik: Well, Shawn Cronin jumped Ron Stern in Calgary and broke my nose.
I was trying to protect Stern. Cronin threw a punch across my shoulder and hit me. . . . I looked up and (former Calgary Flames trainer) Bearcat Murray was standing beside me. There was blood on my sweater. I looked at Stern and he wasn’t bleeding. Bearcat goes: “C’mon, kid. Your nose is broken. Let’s get out of here.”
Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail has a story up on Sidney Crosby and on the right sidebar, the Globe and Mail ranks the Top 200
scorers in the NHL
Pretty fair I would say.
added 9/29/07, Ha, actually the offficial title of the Top 200 is Duhatschek’s Top 200 Fantasy Players.
From the BBC,
CEO of the 02, Philip Beard said: “When we announced the games, they pretty much sold out in a couple of weeks. I have to admit that I was surprised.
“We thought it might take a lot longer to promote the event, but not only did sports fans get behind it but the ice hockey leagues in the UK were really keen to promote it as well.”
Beard is particularly pleased with the interest despite the games taking place on a sporting weekend also featuring World Cup rugby and Premier League football.
“It’s fair to say that at the moment there is a massive amount of big sport on, but this weekend is a total sell-out. People are coming from all over the UK and indeed across Europe,” he told BBC Sport.
from Puck-rakers at the Columbus Dispatch,
A certain Web site has suggested the Blue Jackets are in hot pursuit of a Vancouver Canucks center. Also, that the Blue Jackets are fixin’ to trade Nikolai Zherdev to the Edmonton OIilers for a draft pick.
Let’s break this down: Which Canucks center? Brendan Morrison? Doubt it. He centers Markus Naslund on the Canucks’ No. 1A line. If they trade him, who’s the No. 1 center? That creates a huge hole in the lineup of a club that already struggles to score goals.
via the Calgary Sun,
Iginla pointed out Downie’s hit went too far seeing as he could have made a highlight-reel check without jumping into McAmmond.
“If you don’t leave your feet there, he still gets a big hit. But a lot of us felt it was charging,” Iginla said. “As players, we’re responsible to not put ourselves in that (vulnerable) position, but it happens. You hope there won’t be the full impact, but you can understand and respect when it’s within the rules.”
from the Vancouver Province,
Rightly or wrongly, fighting remains with us. What the means for the league is a matter of some debate as it will continue to be a source of appeal to some and a source of revulsion to others.
“A good portion of teams will want to copy a team (Anaheim) that’s been successful,” Canucks head coach Alain Vigneault said. “But I’m not a believer in an enforcer who plays three or four shifts a game. I think you have to be able to play and I think we have guys on our team who can do that. That’s not an area I’m concerned about at all.”
from Al Strachan at Fox Sports,
The O2 Arena in London opened its doors on June 22 and although some rock concerts have been staged, no ice had ever been laid down.
So three days ago, the NHL’s ice guru, Dan Craig, started work on the surface. In a case like this, more is involved than just dumping some water on the floor and chilling it.
For starters, the floor had been swept after the concerts, but never properly cleaned. So the first job was to make sure that the surface was free from any contaminants that might affect the ice.
Then the boards had to be installed. The O2 Arena was built to accommodate European hockey with its larger ice surface and the stadium’s personnel had used those boards only to control crowds. But Craig had to oversee the installation of boards for an NHL-size rink. That, too, was a first.
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
Moreover, as long as such hits stay in the game, there will be inevitable retaliation and brawls that followed, and you’ll have more of the bizarre scenes like Tuesday when a group of Ottawa players inadvertently trampled the unconscious McAmmond in their rush to exact some form of frontier justice.
The NHL could have taken a hard line on such hits in the summer months, but chose not to. The players’ union sure didn’t demand it, and too many hockey people decreed that the risk of taking body contact out of the game by outlawing hits to the head area was too significant.
Instead, the league has asked its officials to more carefully assess each incident with an emphasis on several key areas:
from Evan Weiner at the NY Sun,
People who follow sports don’t necessarily look up currency rates. But a significant benchmark was reached last week when the Canadian “loonie” was valued at slightly more than $.99 compared to the American greenback (the loonie is currently valued at $. 99691). It is the first time since November 1976 that the American and Canadian dollars have been virtually on par.
Running franchises in Canada became progressively difficult as the Canadian dollar started a free fall, and bottomed out at around $.62 by 1998. But because the two currencies are now on par, the NHL and the NFL may start looking north of the American border to expand their business opportunities.
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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