Kukla's Korner Hockey
In our “Friday Faceoff,” ESPN.com NHL writer Scott Burnside (based in Atlanta) and Toronto Star columnist and frequent ESPN.com contributor Damien Cox (based in Toronto) duke it out over any given hockey topic. Let the games begin!
This week’s topic: The Vancouver Canucks’ Mattias Ohlund slashed Mikko Koivu of the Minnesota Wild, and Koivu suffered a cracked bone in his left leg. For his actions, Ohlund received a four-game suspension. Was the suspension enough?
Damien: So, back to suspension. Here are my two ideas. First, no suspension should ever be less than 10 games. If somebody’s been a bad boy, that’s the only way you’re really going to get his attention and spread the gospel of deterrence. Second, coaches serve half the suspension time or maybe sit out the same number of games.
from Brad Holland at NHL.com,
Nashville’s Game Presentation: I had a chance to sit low in a very good seat last night, and watched the game with an ice-level view instead of a bird’s-eye. Outstanding! The Nashville fans were energetic, into the game, and right on top of the action. They were courteous, asking questions of me and even weren’t shy to give a few tips on how to make NHL.com better (I spent the third period sitting next to a young Predators fan and youth Nashville hockey player who knew as much about hockey-at-large as any Canadian kid…
more on Brad’s hockey weekend… and I think I may have to have a sit-down with young Bradley!
from the Ottawa Citizen,
No one wants to return to the pre-lockout days, when players water-skied off opponents, particularly grievous in the neutral zone. Still, must the NHL call the love taps on shin pads?
In some games, officials do.
On Hockey Night In Canada’s Coach’s Corner last Saturday, Don Cherry showed a set of highlights to illustrate the dubious nature of many slashing and hooking calls. On any given night in the NHL, a player brushing his stick against another player’s shin pads or pants can result in a penalty.
from the Toronto Sun,
Maurice yesterday gave a brief eulogy for Hanlon, the second NHL coach fired this season, but dismissed the notion that any employees feel safer when the turkey and leftovers are gone and the goodwill of Christmas approaches.
“I think a while ago, yes, but not so much (in the new NHL’s CBA),” Maurice said. “You don’t hear as much talk and there’s not as much action.”
Indeed, most trade banter has been just rumours so far. Many salary cap-strapped teams such as the Leafs have eliminated themselves until the Feb. 26 trade deadline when buying and selling is made easier, at least for some expiring one-year deals at reduced cost.
from Darren Dreger of TSN,
NHL Players Association Executive Director Paul Kelly and his entourage have visited with seven of the league’s 30 teams on their fall tour.
Issues discussed include bigger nets, smaller goalie equipment and mandatory visors, to name a few. But the one topic that interests players most right now is removal of the instigator penalty.
from Loose Change at the Hockey News,
Yes, I’m in sunny Florida and – get this – I’m supposed to be writing a hockey column.
Before you start whining and berating me for writing another tired “Americans don’t get hockey” piece, please understand that I’ve – in this short time – come to understand and empathize with the plight of the southern American hockey fan (yes Virginia, there are some – although I’m doubting there are many in Virginia itself).
Thing is, being a hockey fan in a place like this is extremely difficult. Frankly, I’m pushing for the NHL to provide some sort of tax incentive for fans who live in places where the mean temperature is greater than 12 degrees Celsius (around 280 degrees Fahrenheit, I believe).
from George Gross of the Toronto Sun,
“I try to watch what’s happening on the ice and then discuss it with Mike Murphy (former Maple Leaf head coach and now vice-president of hockey operations), Kris King (former Maple Leaf player and now director of hockey operations) and Jim Gregory (former Maple Leaf general manager and now senior vice-president of NHL hockey operations),” offered Campbell.
“There is a lot happening in NHL hockey these days. You have a lot of games and even some outdoor games. We are trying to keep discipline in the game. Then we have to keep an eye on the length of the game, actions of the game officials because people can see the games in super slow motion and in high definition.”
via the Tennessean,
Steve Violetta, executive vice president of business affairs for the Predators, will leave the organization in early December to take a similar position with the Detroit Red Wings, a Predators spokesman confirmed.
A Detroit native, Violetta is in his third season in Nashville, where he’s helped boost attendance and season-ticket sales even as the Predators have raised ticket prices.
Jason Kay of The Hockey News is banging the drum of what seems to be hockey journalists’ favourite pet project—proving that the hockey media “knows what the fans want” by convincing the NHL, through the sheer will of proffering a stance, and bolstering it through endless iterations of the same damn column, to make bigger nets a reality, given the collective theory that more goals = a more entertaining product.
from the Ithaca Times,
Gary Bettman, the commissioner of the National Hockey League, spoke to members of the Cornell University community on Saturday, Nov. 11. Bettman, an alumnus who graduated ‘74, hit on moments of controversy in his tenure at the NHL and previously at the NBA, including the installation of salary caps in both leagues and NHL work stoppages in 1994 and 2004….
Is it true that while you were at the NBA you were known as the “Pope of Salary Caps”?
GB: There were some people - and I’m not sure in flattering ways - who always referred to me that way because there had never been a salary cap before and I was the one who installed it. It was no secret that when the NFL decided, after all the litigation in the ‘80s, that they wanted a cap they actually came to visit. Baseball consulted us as well….
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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