Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Edmonton Journal,
Chris Pronger is going to start his season in Europe this month, but he wouldn’t want to start his career across the pond.
The Anaheim Ducks defenceman believes NHL expansion to Europe wouldn’t work because some North American-raised players would be unwilling to report to European teams.
“How are you going to run the draft?” Pronger asked during a conference call Thursday. “Are you going to take a Canadian kid and ship him off to Europe?”
frm Terry Frei at ESPN,
A year later, with Lindros not on a preseason roster and spending much of his time on NHL Players’ Association business, it’s difficult to imagine a scenario under which any NHL team would give him another chance this season in the wake of his largely unsuccessful stints with Toronto (2005-06) and Dallas (last season).
Lindros isn’t worth the risk, the faith, or the money—especially since he isn’t old enough for an incentive- and condition-laden deal.
Even that seems jarring. After all he’s been through, as long as he’s been around, as he goes through a limbo both similar and dissimilar to (appropriately enough) Peter Forsberg’s, Lindros still is only 34.
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
Not only are fighters dropping at an alarming rate, the incidents of pugilism have gone up sharply this pre-season. In 29 games through Sept. 20, there had been 39 fights for an average of 1.34 per game. Compare that to last year’s pre-season, when there were just 92 in 105 games for an average 0.88. In 2005-06, there were 111 fights in 108 games for an average of 0.97 per game.
Of the 29 pre-season games so far, there have only been five where there have been no fights.
According to hockeyfights.com, the Philadelphia Flyers lead the league with nine pre-season fights, including three from Cote, who also leads the league.
by George James Malik
It’s that time of year again, that time again for each and every one of us, regardless of the teams we root for. Training camp has ended, and the exhibition season has begun, and whether you’ve seen scrimmages and exhibition games in person, online, or whether all the information you can find is the “official” line from the mainstream media, you think you’ve got a pretty good idea as to which of your team’s prospects, try-outs, and new free agents are going to pan out—especially if you’ve seen them in action.
from the Winnipeg Sun,
In a week where possible future expansion was discussed briefly at the NHL board of governors meetings in Chicago, the subject of Winnipeg’s potential return to the loop provided the usual responses.
“If there’s an opportunity and an opening, I’m sure the NHL would definitely look at it,” said Phoenix Coyotes head coach Wayne Gretzky. “We realize and know this is a good hockey area, a great hockey city and a good sports town. It’s a beautiful facility here, a great complex.”
“There’s always going to be that hope for hockey in Canada,” added Coyotes captain Shane Doan. “It’s our sport and what we’re so proud of. It’s something we’ve got to make sure is always there
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
In 15 years of watching the Bettman administration at work, the hockey world has learned that these fellows love to dabble.
They’ve dabbled in an unbalanced schedule, but now appear set to change back. They’ve dabbled in third jerseys and uniform “systems” and streamlining goalie equipment. They’ve dabbled in glowing TV pucks and neutral-site games and regular-season contests in Europe, not to mention the World Cup and the Winter Olympics, never fully committing to any of them….
Oh yes, and they’ve dabbled, curiously, in playing their games outdoors….
That the NHL will try to make this happen in a lakeside city that offers a winter climate that’s both unpredictable and often violently inhospitable is one interesting part of the equation.
That it’s willing to essentially undermine the competitive legitimacy of its own product by permitting such a novelty event to go forward is another.
via Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
Speaking of the Sabres/Penguins “Winter Classic,” I’m having a hard time agreeing with some prominent hockey scribes who wonder whether another outdoor game is a case of the league going to the well one too many times.
Fellas, this is only the second one. In four freakin’ years. Another Rolling Stones tour this is not.
In Adam’s blog today, there is now a reason for me to attempt to get media credentials for a Kings game in LA.
Brian Biggane of Inside the Panthers at the Palm Beach Post responds to the latest story by David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail about expansion & the schedule…
David Shoalts, who covers the Toronto Maple Leafs for Canada’s Globe and Mail newspaper and loves to bash the Panthers, was at it again Wednesday.
In a story about Wednesday’s Board of Governors meetings in Chicago, Shoalts noted that while expansion will be discussed, it isn’t likely to come about for a few more years. If and when it does happen, he said, Winnipeg is likely to be passed over in favor of American cities such as Las Vegas, Kansas City and Seattle.
Winnipeg’s best chance of getting a team, he continued, “remains relocating one of the league’s basket cases, such as the Atlanta Thrashers, Florida Panthers or Nashville Predators.”
added 9:30pm, Bob McKenzie at TSN also has some notes regarding the BOG meeting. A few people willing to pay up $200M-$300M for an NHL team!
via David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
The NHL will probably drop its unbalanced schedule for next season and the vote by the governors could come at their December meeting.
Several governors who left Tuesday’s meeting before it concluded said the sentiment seems to be to have all of the league’s 30 teams visit each other at least once.
“We want [to drop the unbalanced schedule],” Calgary Flames governor Harley Hotchkiss said. “There is a good chance it will happen in December.”
from The Maven at MSG Network,
Jim Balsillie’s name keeps popping up in Canadian papers as a possible-future NHL team-owner. That’s because there are scribes north of the border dying to see a big-league club move to either Hamilton or Winnipeg – or even Crows Nest Pass.
What the Canadian Fourth Estaters refuse to acknowledge is that Balsillie so alienated NHL owners, he has as much chance of securing a team as Anchorage has of winning a Stanley Cup!
more NHL bits from Stan…
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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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