Kukla's Korner Hockey
from On Frozen Blog,
Of course, our perceptions of these professions are premised on myth and an outsider’s necessarily flawed vantage. When you actually get a chance to talk to someone in them, markedly different realities are detailed for you. This was my experience recently in an entirely unplanned and altogether fortuitous exchange I had with a full-time NHL scout. From the moment I confirmed his identity I knew I wanted to pick his hockey head clean of its “a season in the life of” experiences and analyses, for his is a line of work long shrouded behind the scenes, in mystery even, by design.
In this scout I had not only a fertile and fruitful information source but an emblem of hockey’s most impassioned: you don’t go into hockey scouting because the loading gig at Home Depot didn’t come through, you scout — necessarily making unfathomable sacrifices on your personal life — because you possess in inexhaustable fire for life on ice, he told me. He didn’t merely answer my questions in rich detail but created compositions with my readers’ perceived curiosity foremost in mind. He asked of me only that I preserve his anonymity and that of his NHL employer. I happily obliged.
read on... Take some time out today and read both parts of the interview, great stuff…
Thanks to a KK reader for the pointer…
via Darren Dreger at TSN,
The NHL’s injury disclosure police are out in full force. While mindful of players’ safety, the league is reminding teams to follow the guidelines of a policy introduced last week that encourages clubs report proximity of injuries.
On Tuesday night the Ottawa Senators reported Patrick Eaves suffered a “lower body” injury after getting hit with the puck.
According to policy, “lower body” is no longer acceptable.
Based on the video evidence that clearly shows where the puck made contact…in this case, an exception is understandable.
from William Houston of the Globe and Mail,
The National Hockey League is widely perceived to be a sport going nowhere in the United States.
Hockey? Hardly worthy of a place at the table with football, baseball and basketball.
But audience results from last Sunday afternoon suggest otherwise.
The NHL telecast on NBC (Boston Bruins-Pittsburgh Penguins and New York Rangers-New York Islanders regionally) drew a larger national audience than ABC’s National Basketball Association telecast (Phoenix Suns-Sacramento Kings).
Now if some national media types in the US would pick up on this…
from Terry Frei at ESPN,
Three-point regulation victories were rejected out of hand. Devils GM Lou Lamoriello and Ducks GM Brian Burke, among others, scoffed at it, citing the wonderful races for the playoff spots. NHL honcho Colin Campbell said, not unreasonably, perhaps the league needs to try stability and stop tinkering.
Yet with the shootout system, which guarantees that any game tied at the end of regulation is worth three points (two to the winner and one to the loser), it is becoming more clear that making all games worth three points is an idea whose time has come.
from pegasus news,
Something special happened for the Stars this past week, and it revolves around the timeless concept of mensch. A mensch, also known in some circles as a stud, alpha-male and possibly even the shiz-natch, is that rare and elusive person that can take a team on his back and deliver the goods when the time calls for it. Not every team has a mensch—for example, the Colorado Avs—but every team needs one, especially if it has any designs on going deep into the playoffs….
This was precisely the moment that the Stars’ captain and resident mensch decided to take control of the game. In his first shift in the third period, Brendan Morrow decided that ass wasn’t going to kick itself, and started the Stars’ comeback first with physical play, then a goal, and then an assist.
read on... and who is your mensch?
Damien Cox answers his mail at The Spin, his blog at the Toronto Star,
Hypothetical situation - you are the commissioner of a fantasy NHL where you have sweeping powers to re-locate franchises as you see fit for the betterment of the game (in search of profits, good fan base, etc), all of the owners are OK with you to make such decisions on their behalf.
If you are to pick 4 teams from the current league, which 4 teams would you choose to re-locate and why.
A: Before I answer, what would be the salary of such a job? Oh, never mind.
Florida and Atlanta look like very, very iffy markets both now and down the line. Washington has had more than 30 years to stabilize and still hasn’t. Long Island, meanwhile, has been bad for a long, long time, and the dream of a new area remains a distant one. Phoenix looks lousy right now, but it would be interesting to see if a good team in that very nice arena might ultimately work. Nashville doesn’t seem to be attracting the support one would think possible with a very strong team. St. Louis looks dicey at the moment, but I really believe that situation will turn around.
Those are the candidates. If I had to pick four to move, I would pick Florida, Atlanta, Washington and the Islanders. Wouldn’t be much left of the Southeast Division, would there?
more mail answered, some Leafs specific…
from the Toronto Sun,
Name: Frank Torpey
Occupation: To scare the bejesus out of NHL players so they won’t get it on with groupies.
I doubt that’s what it said on his business card, but yes, that was his job. Talk about fighting a losing battle. That’s like trying to sell Britney on the benefits of underwear.
Frank was an FBI agent who became the first chief of security for the NHL starting back in 1970. He died in 2001 at the age of 71, but is fondly remembered. When I asked Maple Leafs coach Paul Maurice, and former Leaf Kris King if they remembered Frank, they immediately did their best impressions.
This time of year, teams are planning changes and trying to sign players to extensions.
Spector has a great wrap-up today of all the talk…
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
“I don’t think it’s right,” the Maple Leafs captain said. “I just don’t like that part of the system.”
Sundin isn’t talking about the Leafs’ forever-in-doubt playoff status. He isn’t talking about a league that awards more points for some games than others.
He is talking about the break of being in the Southeast Division, where a first-place team—as of yesterday afternoon it was the Atlanta Thrashers—get a choice spot in the playoff standings while more accomplished teams with more points, such as the Ottawa Senators and Pittsburgh Penguins, get pushed back.
“You should be seeded by how many points you get, not being in a (soft) division,” Sundin said.
from Bob McKenzie at TSN,
The Los Angeles Kings’ GM ruffled feathers with last week’s signing of free-agent defenceman Joe Piskula from the University of Wisconsin.
As part of Piskula’s contract, there are games played bonuses of $25,000 for playing one game, three games and five games. In other words, he gets $75,000 guaranteed for playing just five NHL games with the Kings, which will likely happen by the weekend.
The NHL believes this bonus structure violates the CBA clause on guaranteed monies for entry-level players and, therefore, rejected the contract when the Kings submitted it. But the NHL Players’ Association filed a grievance over that rejection and so Piskula’s contract will stand until such time that an arbitrator rules on it.
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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