Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Here’s a suggestion for the governors to chew over before the Pittsburgh Penguins get too far along in their plans for a new building or before the Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames complete their construction plans.
Why not allow clubs with new buildings on the horizon to adopt a slightly larger ice surface than the current 200-by-85-foot sheet that is standard in the NHL? The idea of expanding the width by as little as five feet makes sense in an era when players are bigger, stronger and faster. Almost every time someone mentions making the game better, that’s a talking point, that you need to go not necessarily to the international width (100 feet, too wide by some standards), but to 90 feet, just so it isn’t so crowded out there.
This topic was brought up on the NHL Hour yesteday, and there was no mention of altering the ice surface for new buildings. Bettman did say changing the ice surface in current rinks would also change the site lines for the fans in the seats, so no to changing the ice dimensions in current rinks.
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
How well has that scheduling format been received?
Consider that one week from now, the NHL’s reigning most valuable player, Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins, will play in Western Canada for the first time in his career. Nearly 200 games into his professional life, Crosby will swing through Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver, starting on Dec. 5, giving fans there a chance to see him in person for the first time since he set foot in the league.
Naturally, interest in seeing Crosby play is far outstripping the available ticket supply.
from Rob Parker of the Detroit News,
It was only fitting McCarty was at Tuesday night’s Wings 5-3 victory over the Flames at The Joe. McCarty played for both teams—he was with Calgary the last two seasons. A free agent, McCarty still loves the game and hasn’t given up the idea of playing again.
“I want to play, for sure,” McCarty said. “I’d like to give it a shot and catch on with somebody and play. I think I can still play, I still think I can bring something to the team—that intangible stuff, leadership, a spark.”
from the Windsor Star,
“When I first started as a pro scout, the first season (1985-86) after coaching in Detroit, there were only two or three of us (in the entire league),’’ Polano said. “Now, every team has at least two or three pro scouts.”
Though their job may be undertaken in virtual anonymity beyond the realm of the National Hockey League’s inner circle, the task they perform is essential to a team’s success, both short- and long-term.
“Every scout, both pro and amateur, is valuable to his team,” Wings general manager Ken Holland said.
from Mark Spector of the National Post via Canada.com,
Today, in the third season after the lockout that changed so many facets of the game, the NHL finds its popularity waning in three of its gold star American markets: Detroit, Dallas and Colorado. There just may be a price to be paid after all, the league is learning, for the salary cap that has put millions into league coffers over the last three years….
While interest has increased in small markets, where teams now compete on an even economic plane, it seems people in the large markets preferred it when their team had the ability to outspend opponents.
All of the big U.S. markets include competition from the NFL, the NBA and Major League Baseball. There is an inherent battle for headlines and talk-show time that is being lost by NHL clubs that simply aren’t making news the way they used to under the old collective bargaining agreement.
from Chris Zelkovich of the Toronto Star,
But while Bettman’s performance won’t cause any talk-radio hosts to worry about job security, the NHL boss deserves credit for going where no sports commissioner has gone before.
On the other hand, the NHL Hour wasn’t exactly a baptism by fire. Though the first call must have given Bettman chills, John from Winnipeg wasted no time in telling the commissioner he wasn’t going to ask about the Jets returning to Manitoba.
Most of the callers, all but the aforementioned from the U.S., either lobbed softballs at the commissioner or praised him and the state of the game.
from John Buccigross of ESPN,
The network has highlights of every game—every night and every morning; miles of NHL Productions footage, heretofore wasting away on shelves and unseen by the masses; special presentations; and, yes, vintage games shown in their entirety. It’s all a hockey fan needs….
And with the NHL Network showing those vintage games, it gives me the opportunity to do something I’ve wanted to do for a while—blog a game from the past.
So, here we go. The game is between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs from Jan. 2, 1971.
from Pierre LeBrun of the CP via the Globe and Mail,
The NHL owners have a busy agenda as they gather this week in picturesque Pebble Beach, Calif., but they’ll still find time to squeeze in a little golf.
The annual two-day board of governors meeting, the most important of the year, goes Thursday and Friday and should finally bring about a new format for the NHL schedule. It means that every team will play one another starting next season.
“There’s quite a large sentiment for change,” said Edmonton Oilers president and CEO Patrick LaForge.
read on for the main agenda…
“I believe that under the current system that all our markets can support their clubs. Contraction isn’t something we have any interest in,” Commissioner Gary Bettman said at the Reuters Media Summit in New York. He also said the league was not in any kind of expansion process.
added 12:58pm, from NHL.com,
The National Hockey League (NHL) and XM Satellite Radio today announced a new weekly live satellite radio show titled NHL Hour which will be hosted by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and a rotation of League executives. The show will debut Tuesday, November 27 at 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. EST on NHL Home Ice (XM Channel 204) and NHL.com. On December 6, NHL Hour will begin airing every Thursday from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. EST.
Gary Bettman was also on Fox Business News yesterday- Watch the video…
from the Toronto Sun,
As the league’s big shots gather on the picturesque Monterey Peninsula, an alteration in the NHL schedule will be first and foremost on the agenda.
The format expected to get proposed would see teams play their four division rivals six times each (24 total games); the other 10 teams in their conference four times each (40 total games); and the 15 teams in the other conference each once (15 total games), adding up to a total of 79 games.
The other three games are believed to be wild-card tilts against teams in the other conference, thereby completing the 82-game sked.
more * And I do hope the schedule is changed and doesn’t get turned down by some hardliners in the East.
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.
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