Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Mike Brophy of Sportsnet,
I think Canada has two legitimate shots at winning the Cup – the Vancouver Canucks and the Calgary Flames – and a third team, the Montreal Canadiens, who are a wild card.
First, the Canucks.
The Sedin twins, Daniel and Henrik, have taken their game to a new level and were quite deserving of the long-term deals they signed with the team in the summer. I used to believe they ranked somewhere between low-end first-liners or high-end second-liners, but now I believe they are the type of players you can win with.
Beyond that, general manager Mike Gillis has done an excellent job of surrounding the twins with a quality supporting cast. The Canucks boast a lot of depth up front with the likes of Alex Burrows, Ryan Kessler, Pavol Demitra, Kyle Wellwood, Steve Bernier and defensive specialist Ryan Johnson.
The movie trailer for - Pour toujours…Les Canadiens. In French, but you’ll get the storyline.
via Tom Gulitti’s Twitter,
The Devils have signed C Rob Niedermayer, younger brother of ex-Devil Scott.
added 2:04pm, from Tom Gulitti of Fire & Ice,
Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello announced this afternoon that the team has signed Rob Niedermayer, the younger brother or former Devil Scott Niedermayer.
“I felt that we needed a little size and strength down the middle and now with Travis [Zajac] and [Dainius Zubrus] and Robbie [6-2, 200] I think we’ve got three pretty good size-strength center icemen,” Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello said. “We know Robbie very well, of course. We played against him in the Stanley Cup [in 2003 with Anaheim. He’s one of those forwards that can be used in different roles.”
from the Daily Times,
The Flyers are expected to release veteran defenseman Randy Jones today, according to a team source.
Jones is a four-year veteran who has been one of the team’s rocks on the blue line. The 6-foot, 2-inch Jones played in 47 games for the Flyers last year. He tallied four goals and four assists and racked up22 penalty minutes. In his NHL career, he has 13 goals and 56 assists.
Darren Dreger on Leafs Lunch reports Fleury has been released by the Flames.
added 12:48pm, Dreger just mentioned on Leafs Lunch Fleury will have a press conference on Monday, needs a few days before talking.
Calgary, AB - Calgary Flames General Manager Darryl Sutter announced today that Theoren Fleury has been released from his try-out agreement.
“I believe Theoren did a great job and should be proud, especially considering all the factors including age, time away from the game and lifestyle change,” said Sutter. “This is not a hockey story; it’s a life story. Our agreement with Theoren was that he had to be one of our top six wingers and there were never any intentions of assigning him to the American Hockey League.”
“I am very thankful to Darryl and the Flames organization for following through on the commitment to provide me with this opportunity,” said Fleury. “I said in the beginning that no matter what the outcome, this would be a success story. I intend to take the next few days to review this experience and make decisions with my family regarding next steps in my life.”
from Steve Zipay of Blue Notes at Newsday,
None of the half-dozen beat writers covered the preseason game in Detroit and the next afternoon, in Boston, Andrew Gross and I lined up for the brief pregame QnA with the coach. Asked if he enjoyed the previous evening’s post-game presser without the daily chroniclers, he called it “the best bleepin hour of my career…It’s not just you guys, I hate all the bleepin’ media.” After two innocuous questions yesterday afternoon, he told Larry Brooks to “stop coaching” and chastised me for worring too much about the lines. No prob, we’re big boys. Some of this is a yen for confrontation and because he’d rather not publicly divulge his ideas—-except on his own terms, when he wants to send a message.
more & other Rangers notes…
Lyle Richardson for Fox Sports says Chicago, Detroit and Columbus will battle for first in the division with Chicago taking the title.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
If it were up to John Tortorella, the Rangers would go into next Friday’s season-opener in Pittsburgh with only six defensemen on the roster. At least that’s what the coach claimed prior to last night’s 3-2 Garden exhibition victory over the Capitals.
“I don’t like having extra bodies around,” Tortorella said. “If it were up to me alone I’d prefer six.”
It’s a good thing the decision isn’t going to belong exclusively to the coach, because opening with the minimum number on the blue line makes no sense whatsoever. General manager Glen Sather, who will make the final judgment, hopefully realizes that.
Because unless the Blueshirts, who got down to seven defensemen with yesterday’s demotion of Bobby Sanguinetti to the AHL Wolf Pack, are going to bite an extremely expensive bullet by dispatching either Wade Redden or Michal Rozsival to Hartford, cutting down to six all but certainly means sending Michael Del Zotto back to the OHL London Knights
from Wayne Scanlan of the Ottawa Citizen,
The fact is, Kelly isn’t valued for his production, but for what general manager Bryan Murray refers to as his “glue” component. Kelly is a role player, character guy and a penalty killer.
He was the subject of finger pointing last season, not because he played so poorly, but because of the four-year, $8.5-million contract he signed in the summer of 2008.
When it comes to public perception of players, money really does change everything.
As long as Kelly was a good soldier playing for what passes for NHL chump change, he was a hero in the program. As soon as he signed that contract, Kelly became a target in a losing season. He agrees he hasn’t changed much from the popular guy of two years ago.
from Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News,
Let’s hope money isn’t an issue. History suggests the Sabres are worried about starting the clock on his contract, which would get him get back to the bargaining table for dough a year sooner after his three-year rookie deal expires.
If their roster is overcrowded, make room even if it means waiving a veteran. Toni Lydman and Henrik Tallinder, headed toward unrestricted free agency and not part of the Sabres’ long-term future, are good candidates. The Sabres missed the playoffs with them, so they can certainly do the same without them.
No matter, the kid needs to stay. The Sabres would need to live with his mistakes knowing he’ll improve as he becomes more comfortable. His teammates believe he belongs. Ruff acknowledged that Myers is pushing them more than they’re pulling him.
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.
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