Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
Florida GM Jacques Martin hasn’t given up hope of signing Bouwmeester long-term and indicated he’ll hold contract talks next month when discussions are allowed to resume.
“I don’t think it has changed with (Bouwmeester),” said Martin, the former Senators coach and Rockland native.
Sources say Martin is taking one more stab at locking up Bouwmeester before sending him packing.
The Panthers hoped the hiring of coveted junior coach Peter DeBoer would send the message that the franchise is serious about getting back on track and into the playoffs.
more on Bouwmeester…
from Damien Cristodero of the St. Petersburg Times,
Perhaps, coach Rick Tocchet said with heavy sarcasm, he should devise a system in which the Lightning just keeps icing the puck.
Maybe, he said, he will give the bulk of ice time to players who show they are prepared to play.
“The warnings have been given,” Tocchet said. “We’ll go to boot camp now.”...
“To me, it’s an embarrassment when you have more than three or four individuals not ready to play,” Tocchet said. “It’s embarrassing right now. It really is.”
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
There’s no hurry to move Kovalchuk, but this spring’s draft has a couple of sure-fire building blocks at the top of the class, and Kovalchuk, whenever he is moved, should offer a decent package of top-end prospects, top picks and at least one position player. Given the sorry state of the current team, there’s no reason to drag out the process. Might as well start building now as opposed to next summer or the summer of 2010.
As for alienating fans, it’s far too late to worry about that in Atlanta; the question is who should be pulling the trigger on what will be the franchise’s most important trade.
more on the Thrashers, plus Norris Trophy talk, Jeff Carter too, and yes, Sundin and Avery thrown in…
From Transworld News:
Attorney John Morgan of the Orlando-based law firm Morgan & Morgan was approached recently by a Tampa advertising executive about a potential deal to purchase the naming rights to the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, Florida. Morgan & Morgan (ForThePeople.com) is one of the nation’s largest plaintiff’s law firms.
According to an article published on Tampa Bay Online, Morgan said, “I was asked if I have an interest in buying the name of the stadium, and I do ... Putting ‘Morgan & Morgan Forum’ on that building - that appeals to me.” Morgan said he was offered a price of $1.7 million per year by John McKay of McKay Advertising, an independent advertising firm in Tampa. This is almost a million dollars less than the St. Petersburg Times now pays for the naming rights to this arena, which is home to the NHL team Tampa Bay Lightning.
from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,
Sean Avery’s future with the Dallas Stars could be decided on Wednesday in Dallas, when owner Tom Hicks sits down with his lieutenants in Dallas.
“We’re going to look at all the alternatives, and some recommendations from Brett [Hull], Les [Jackson] and Jeff (Cogen, Stars president),” Hicks said on Monday as he arrived at the National Hockey League’s board of governors meeting at the swish Breaker Hotel on the Florida coast…
Has he played his last game as a Star?
“I’m not prepared to say that yet. I want to give our guys the respect they deserve to make the recommendations.,” Hicks said. “Certainly when [Dallas head coach] Dave Tippett comes out and stakes his claim, it’s pretty hard to overcome that.”
via the Stat Wizards at Elias Sports Bureau,
Buffalo’s Thomas Vanek has scored the highest percentage of his team’s goals this season of any NHL player (19/68, 27.9%). Three other players have scored at least 20% of their team’s goals: Philadelphia’s Jeff Carter (19/84, 22.6%), New Jersey’s Zach Parise (15/67, 22.4%) and Ottawa’s Dany Heatley (13/59, 22.0%).
Jeff Carter’s goal at 3:34 of overtime gave the Flyers a 2-1 victory over the Hurricanes on Saturday night. Carter did not register a point in overtime in any of his three previous seasons in the NHL but leads the League with three goals and five points in overtime this season. Carter’s five overtime points are a single-season record for a Flyers player and his three OT goals matches the club record set by defenseman Joni Pitkanen in 2005-06.
From Mike Milbury, blogging on CBC.ca:
So what gives?
Every GM looks for strength down the middle. It starts with a good goalie, then a key pair of defencemen and a top-10 scoring/playmaking centre.
In the backend, goalie Tim Thomas has to be a candidate for a couple of major NHL awards at this point in the season including MVP. He has been outstanding. Zdeno Chara has overcome a tentative start and is back on his game while Dennis Wideman has become an elite NHL defenceman this year.
And up front? The much-maligned Marc Savard has found the full measure of his game with help from head coach Claude Julien and looks like a much more committed player. And speaking of the coach, there is no doubt that he has to be given much of the credit for the continued rise of the franchise.
from Randy Hahn at the Seagate Broadcaster Blog,
General managers, coaches and even players talk about keeping an even keel. Don’t get too excited with the victories and don’t get too down in the dumps when you lose. But what about the rest of us? Are we supposed to stay on an even keel too? For those of us who don’t have a financial stake in the team, the Sharks are ENTERTAINMENT! Why can’t we flip out a little that they’ve made all-time National Hockey League history with their incredible first third of the season?
I’m not talking about being front runners. I’m not saying that we should start drawing up the parade route around the Fairmont Hotel and Plaza De Cesar Chavez Park. I’m talking about enjoying the emotional rollercoaster that every NHL season is. And right now the Sharks are on top of the rollercoaster, so why not live it up a little?
The Chicago Blackhawks are awaiting word from the NHL on whether rookie forward Kris Versteeg will be suspended for one game and head coach Joel Quenneville fined $10,000 for Versteeg being assessed an instigator penalty in the final seconds of last night’s 7-1 win over Phoenix.
NHL rules call for an automatic one-game suspension for the player and a $10,000 fine to his coach for any player who instigates a fight in the final five minutes of a game, but the league reviews each one case-by-case and, in some instances, rescinds the suspension and fine.
Update 3:52pm ET: From TSN, Versteeg suspended one game and Quenneville fined $10,000.
Here’s the video clip, via HockeyFights.com:
Michigan State will be playing Georgia in the Capital One Bowl on January 1, 2009 at 1pm on ABC. The Wings play the Blackhawks on the same day in the Winter Classic, game time is 1pm on NBC.
What game will you watch live and what game goes to the DVR?
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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