Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Category: NHL-Talk

Cap The Contracts

from Bruce Arthur of the National Post,

Ask a National Hockey League general manager to draft any three players from across the league, and it’s not impossible that the three names that come out would be Alexander Ovechkin, Vinny Lecavalier, and Henrik Zetterberg. Sure, Roberto Luongo or Sidney Crosby or Luke Schenn could jump in there - this last possibility is assuming the GM in question only listens to talk radio in Toronto, and then only in the first month of the season - but any GM would be thrilled to sign those first three players to a lot of dollars and for plenty of years.

But at some point there should be limits. That is not to directly criticize the 12-year, US$73-million deal Zetterberg signed Wednesday with the Detroit Red Wings. The deal’s average cap hit is just US$6-million, Red Wings GM Ken Holland is among the game’s smartest men, and Zetterberg, 28, is the epitome of the team-oriented star. This is probably a laudable move.

But even if it is, it doesn’t mean it should be allowed.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Dark Horses Race to the Playoffs

From Ryan Kennedy at The Hockey News,

If there’s a dark horse team hoping to hoist the Stanley Cup this summer, they’re obviously going to have to go through at least one of the division leaders along the way, so wins against those penthouse franchises are paramount; after all, the easiest way to prove you can do something is by doing it.

With that in mind, here are the teams who can put The Fear into a favorite in the post-season:

BUFFALO (six wins against division leaders)
The Sabres have a balanced attack, good goaltending and a veteran defense. They’ve also beaten every Eastern Conference division leader at least once already, including Boston three times.

read on for more dark horses

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Playoff Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: playoffs

Stop The Fighting In The NHL

from Kostya Kennedy of Sports Illustrated,

Being a fighter in the NHL takes courage. Advocating fighting in the NHL does not. The most courageous thing would be to end the NHL’s Neanderthal Age, to get past the old thinking, to behave as if it were the year 2009 and to make the hockey world a better place.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Your Questions Answered

Today at NHL.com I answer some of the emails I have received in the last week or so.

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Media, Hockey Bloggers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Props!

from Jay Onrait of TSN,

A very good friend of mine sent me an e-mail over the weekend that pretty much sums up my feelings about this past weekend’s NHL Skills Competition:

“… half the guys looked like they didn’t care and the other half were trying these things that they couldn’t pull off. Ovechkin won because he put on a hat. It was bad.”

Exactly. Ovechkin won because he put on a hat.

What if Kovalev had put on a bra? Would that have tipped the scales in his favour?

continued

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: all-star+game

Forced Sit-Down May Actually Help Wings

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Much was made of the fact that NHL commissioner Gary Bettman will not permit either the Detroit Red Wings’ Pavel Datsyuk or Nicklas Lidstrom from playing in Tuesday’s first game after the break because they skipped Sunday’s All-Star Game, in order to permit minor injuries to heal.

What an unnecessary tempest in a teapot.

In the grand scheme of things, a couple of extra days off for their two veteran stars will help, not hurt, the Red Wings as they prepare to defend the Stanley Cup…

That’s not to fault Bettman for his decision either. Last February, at the semi-annual general managers’ meeting, he made it clear that All-Star Game matters and so the policy going forward was this: If a player opts out, there better be a good reason to do so – or at least an injury significant enough to keep him out of the game just before the break or the game after.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Bettman & MacLean

Last night Ron MacLean of HNIC had his annual ASG sit-down with Gary Bettman.

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: gary+bettman

The Bettman Way

from Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette,

The bottom line is that Bettman did it his way and it worked. The National Hockey League that was on display here this weekend is a far happier, healthier place than it was in the fall of 2004 when Bettman locked out the NHLPA.

All our dire predictions that Bettman was going to trash the league, that the fans would never come back, that a league like the NHL could never survive another labour stoppage, much less a lost season? Forgotten.

Just like all those hundreds of emails I received during the lockout from fans who declared that they would never, ever buy a ticket to a NHL game again.

Stupid me. I believed them. Bettman didn’t, which is why he is the commissioner and I am an ink-stained media wretch.

read on

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Back To Reality

from Roy MacGregor of the Globe and Mail,

...But that party’s over.

There will still be glorious hockey celebrations – imagine Canada winning two gold medals at next year’s Vancouver Winter Games – but no more spectacular bashes that suggest the revenue streams are as endless as the water that flows here from the Great Lakes.

“We are having a good season,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman told a news conference here on Saturday.

“It’s a wonder no one threw a shoe at him,” a francophone reporter muttered.

more

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You Can’t Have It Both Ways

from Daryl Reaugh of Razor With An Edge,

Let me get this straight, the league office endorses NHL teams hiding injuries from the media and fans or disclosing them as very vague “upper body” or “lower body” – but its not OK for a player to have one of these slight or near-phantom injuries keep him from attending the corporate elbow-rubbing autograph session known as All-Star Weekend.

Hmmmm. That’s curious.

Does the “H” in NHL stand for hypocrisy?

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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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.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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