Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the CP via TSN,
The second wave is ready and waiting.
After a flurry of activity in the first two weeks of NHL free agency, where the bigger names all found new homes with rich, long-term contracts, a number of unrestricted free agents are now hoping to get their names on deals….
Now that the first wave of free agents has come and gone like a blur, the league as a whole takes a deep breath and regroups for the second wave.
The signings will come in dribs and drabs over the rest of the summer.
“The first week of free agency is 100 miles per hour,” said agent Pat Brisson, who got Daniel Briere a big payday with Philadelphia on July 1. “After that you see a little decline. Things slow down a little. Some GMs may wait a little on some needs, see if the price comes down. On the flip side as a player, you have to be patient.
“And sometimes that pays off.”
From The Hockey News,
Contrary to an earlier report, Phoenix Coyotes center Jeremy Roenick has not decided to retire from the NHL.
According to a statement issued Monday to The Hockey News.com by his agent, Neil Abbott, Roenick “is considering all of his options, including retirement, (but) has made no final decision.”
Abbott added that a formal announcement regarding Roenick’s final decision will be made in the next few weeks.
The recent death of Roenick’s father-in-law played a factor in the famously personable NHL star’s reticence to confirm a Philadelphia Inquirer story that he was ending his 18-year playing career immediately.
*Frankly, we always thought it was a little strange that so many were reporting Roenick’s retirement like it was a ‘done deal’ based on nothing more than a text message.
from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
How proud the NHL must be to know one of its players has been hosting a camp that instructs kids as young as 12 how to physically decimate their opponents with their fists.
in case you missed the story Adam is referring to, you can read it here...
Over the Summer, diehard Devils fan, Battle of NY blogger, and Kukla’s Korner “broadcast contributor” Steve Lepore will chronicle his trips to the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ during it’s ongoing construction, on target for a grande opening on October 25th (for a Bon Jovi Concert) and a Devils opening October 27th (against the Senators).
By Steve Lepore
Sure, it can be a daunting place to visit. Once in a while, you’ll be propositioned by a man selling cheap roses for Valentine’s Day (even though it’s the middle of July) and the supposed “Newark Boys & Girls Clubs” selling M & M’s. But there’s something that’s a little lost in all the perception and the supposed “evil” that comes out of New Jersey’s second most dangerous city (#1 is Camden, which is basically a suburb of Philly, but no one complains about Flyers games being in a bad neighborhood).
Sunday afternoon in July, if you are reading KK you must be hockey hungry.
A KK member pointed out and translated this CBC story and the translation follows…
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
Now, you’d like to think there is retribution coming down the road for those teams which spent like French kings, but the truth is, you can’t be certain where this is going. The cap rose to just north of $50 million this summer from $44 million last season and, yikes, $39 million in 2005-06, the first season after the lockout, and the widespread presumption is it can’t possibly go up again.
But the new CBC deals kicks in at $100 million Cdn in 2008-09, up from $60 million this season. Huge markets in Los Angeles, Chicago and St. Louis have been under-performing at the gate and now seem poised to turn their fortunes around. The New Jersey Devils are moving into a new rink. Nashville could move into a more lucrative market.
Add it all up and who’s to say the cap won’t go up again, leading to more fireworks next summer?
from Larry Brooks at the NY Post,
Fact is, however, that higher ticket prices beget more revenue, which begets a higher cap, which ultimately benefits the Rangers and every big-market franchise and consumer around the league.
The fans all across Small Market NHL might want to consider that before buying all the new apparel and licensed products the league is creating for this season with its introduction of new uniforms and new team logos, for without any meaningful revenue-producing programs coming from Sixth Avenue, the 2008-09 cap will increase in direct proportion to increased ticket prices and merchandising dollars.
more from Brooks, including Sutter talk, and Larry has a question for Kenny Holland…
from Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News,
In fact, big-market teams do have a distinct edge. Teams from larger (see: wealthy) markets, such as Philadelphia and New York, can offer longterm deals loaded with more money up front because they can afford to buy out players toward the end of the contract. The structure of the deals helps them circumvent the salary cap while still drawing the better players.
Understand, the big-market advantage wasn’t the reason the Sabres lost Drury and Briere. They could have kept both for less money over fewer years than the co-captains eventually received as unrestricted free agents. It wasn’t until Drury and Briere hit the open market that New York and Philly could impose their leverage.
added 8:41am, from the New York Times,
But the small-market teams appear to be struggling again. Buffalo lost Drury and Brière without seeming to make a serious move to keep either one. Edmonton struggled to lure players — including Rangers center Michael Nylander, who agreed to a contract with the Oilers, then backed out to go to Washington — until it finally landed Montreal defenseman Sheldon Souray last week for five years and $27 million.
The small-market teams have the same amount of money to spend as teams like the Rangers, although some would rather stay closer to the cap’s minimum figure ($34 million next season) than to the top.
John Ferguson Sr. has passed away at the age of 68.
The five-time Stanley cup winner succumbed to his second bout with cancer on Saturday at his home in Windsor, Ontario.
‘‘On behalf of my entire family, I’d like to thank the many friends, professional colleagues, medical personnel, and hockey fans who have supported us through this difficult time. Your expressions of sympathy have helped bring comfort to us. Your kind words have helped strengthen us.’’ John Ferguson Jr. said in a statement.
Ferguson’s son, John Ferguson Jr., is the general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
*Note: a profile of John Ferguson, Sr. can be found on Legends of Hockey
from Mike Zappone at KDKA in Pittsburgh,
It’s laughable when I hear people around the league complaining every time a player signs a large contract. The instant knee-jerk response is that the lockout didn’t work. Those naysayers can’t be more wrong. Players will always jump from team to team, and there will always be teams overpaying for players. That’s the nature of free agency. Why don’t the same people complain when the same signings happen in the salary capped NFL?
The NHL’s cap system is actually more foolproof than the NFL’s. Teams can’t play around with bonus money to soften the cap hit or hide dollars like they do in the NFL. The NHL’s system counts every part of the contract towards the cap numbers.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org