Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated,
Heading into the weekend, just six junior-eligible players remained on NHL rosters: Boston’s Milan Lucic, Chicago’s Patrick Kane, Edmonton’s Sam Gagner, Minnesota’s James Sheppard, Phoenix’s Peter Mueller, and David Perron of the Blues.
Every one of them thinks he belongs in the NHL. None would have lasted this long without that belief. But players don’t always know what’s best for them. To be honest, neither do the teams who employ them. And that’s why the decisions regarding their fates are so open to second-guessing.
from Allan Maki of the Globe and Mail,
The question has been asked before and today, on the 50th anniversary of the Rocket’s 500th goal, it bears asking again: could Maurice Richard have been successful in today’s NHL?
Was he a good enough skater? Would he have been big enough to ward off defencemen? Would his legendary temper have bubbled over and gotten the better of him in an 82-game schedule?
from Jim Kelley at Sportsnet,
...Still, we cling to a phrase from that legendary American and abuse victim Rodney King: “People, can’t we all just get along.”
Look, I’d love to delve into hockey issues like why Sid ‘The Kid’ Crosby is being matched in the goals-scored department by Jeremy ‘The Old Man’ Roenick, why the Montreal Canadiens can’t score or even what a phenomenal yet still overlooked talent Paul Stastny has become.
The problem is: issues keep getting in the way, so let’s deal with them….
Gary Bettman’s tenure: Make your own decisions regards whether or not NHL hockey is better now than the day he took over some 14 years ago, but I can guarantee you there are many inside the business of hockey who feel the Commissioner has made their business much more difficult to operate profitably.
many more issues…
from David Pagnotta at NBC Sports,
The NHL still has a number of concerns it needs to address before it can confidently say its numbers are heading in the right direction.
Questions continue to surround the league’s national television contracts and the stability of its current markets. But these are just two of five important factors facing the league as it attempts to maximize its revenue potential.
So what needs to be done? How can the league generate a significantly greater revenue base? I’ll tell you…
1. Get back on ESPN…
from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
The Penguins have settled with the final creditor from their bankruptcy of the late 1990s.
He also happens to be the most celebrated player in franchise history and one of the team’s primary owners.
Mario Lemieux, who was owed $32 million in deferred compensation on the contract in effect when he retired as a player in 1997, will receive $21 million in the wake of a periodic refinancing of the team’s debt earlier this week.
from William Houston of the Globe and Mail,
...And then the league would move to Europe, to large northern and central European cities where hockey is a major sport. But instead of expanding, it would relocate six existing but failing teams.
Said Thun, “You would go to the six lowest revenue producing teams in the NHL and say, ‘Listen, we’ve got owners in Europe. We want to set up a European division. And we want to move six teams at one time. Are you willing to sell your franchise for $250-million?’ I can’t imagine a lot of people would say no.”
A fee of $250-million would certainly be well above market value for clubs such as Phoenix, Atlanta, Nashville and Florida.
from the AP via Yahoo,
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman showed up at Thursday night’s game between the Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning with a cast on his left arm. Asked whether he had dropped the gloves against one of the league’s enforcers, Bettman said he actually had tendon surgery on Monday.
He then joked, “It’s a result of reporters asking (stupid) questions.”
continued... a little outlook of the NHL…
From Terry Frei at ESPN,
I’m a whole-hearted subscriber to the cliché: You have to judge players against their own eras. In any sport. Equipment. Travel. The degree of eliteness of the major-league talent pool and opposition. Rules. Style of play. In some sports, the potential chemical enhancements. It’s all different, changing, fluctuating and sliding over the years. Haven’t we all recognized that blind adherence to numbers as the measuring standard across time, in any sport, is an absurdity?
Maybe this isn’t fair, but black-and-white footage and scratch voice tracks on the old and accompanying play-by-play descriptions still seem to add credibility, whether it’s when comparing Frank Mahovlich’s 533 goals to Mike Gartner’s 708, or any other careers.
Some people mistake that kind of sentiment for a belittlement of the modern era, and those who unreasonably don blinkers and refuse to consider the overall picture are just as silly as the isolated few who refuse to acknowledge the greatness in the past.
from David Amber at ESPN,
A perfect time for “10 Degrees” to count down, in reverse order, the Top 10 all-time NHL milestones and records.
10. Martin Brodeur: 11 consecutive 30-plus-win seasons
After breaking the single-season wins record with 48 victories in 2006-07, Martin Brodeur should extend his NHL record of 11 straight 30-plus win seasons in 2007-08. Brodeur, just like Patrick Roy, wants to leave the NHL as the game’s winningest goalie, and he will.
Friday, October 19th, is the 50th anniversary of Maurice “The Rocket” Richard scoring the 500th goal of his career—the first player to do so in NHL history.
Over at Habs Inside/Out, Dave Stubbs put up some information about that historic goal yesterday, so we thought we’d join in by posting some quotes from the players who have since scored that milestone marker.*
Mike Gartner (NY Rangers)
“It’s probably the quietest 500 goals ever,” Gartner said. “But I feel I’ve gotten recognition within the hockey ranks. That’s important to me. I work at being a goal-scorer. There are some goal-scorers where it’s just a natural thing. I always felt I had to work hard to get my chances. I still feel that way (after 500).” (Vancouver Sun, November 20, 1991)
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