Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Loose Change at the Hockey News,
I hear the snickers. I read your signs.
You pick on me and you pick on Sidney because I don’t live up to your lofty expectations.
You have this notion in your head that playoff beards have to be wild and unruly. Where does it say a “true” playoff beard has to look like the Cookie Monster’s back hair?
A “beard,” according to my Large-Type Whisker-Friendly Dictionary, is “hair growing on the chin or lower cheek of the face.” Nowhere does it have a thread count or a topographical map.
from Drew Sharp of the Detroit Free Press,
The NHL limited player access Thursday, providing only four Red Wings to answer questions at a news conference, even though Game 4 isn’t until Saturday. The Penguins’ four players, believe it or not, did not include Sidney Crosby. It was downtime, an extra day to rest, extra time to heal. Such conditions provided the ideal opportunity for the NHL to further build a mainstream fan base.
The Wings are entitled to an off day. It’s a long grind, physically and mentally, going this deep into the playoffs. But a sport’s championship series remains its greatest marketing tool, and when you’re blessed with an exceptional second-day talking point like Game 3, you must milk it for every ounce of publicity.
From Scott Herhold and Pete Carey at the Mercury News,
Federal investigators are probing the business dealings of San Jose socialite and investor William “Boots” Del Biaggio III, the Mercury News has learned.
Del Biaggio announced his departure Monday from Sand Hill Capital, a firm he co-founded in 1997. Sand Hill, a boutique lender to startups, issued a terse press release saying he was leaving the company “for personal reasons.”
The 40-year-old financier, until recently a minority investor in the the San Jose Sharks hockey team, last year became a part-owner of the Nashville Predators hockey team. Del Biaggio did not return phone calls seeking comment. His lawyer, Elliot Peters of the San Francisco law firm Keker & Van Nest, e-mailed a statement to the Mercury News:
“Boots Del Biaggio is a good and generous person. Boots will cooperate fully with any investigation.”
Del Biaggio is currently part of the investor group that recently acquired the Nashville Predators.
Update 12:17pm ET May 30th: John Glennon at The Tennessean notes a statement issued by the Predators.
From the St. Louis Blues,
St. Louis Blues President John Davidson announced today the club has extended the contract of Sr. Vice President and General Manager, Larry Pleau through the 2009-10 season. Davidson also announced the club has named Doug Armstrong as Blues Vice President of Player Personnel. He will assume the General Manager duties beginning in 2010.
“Larry has been very valuable to this organization for many years,” said Davidson. “Under his watch we have locked up our young players with long term deals and continue to stockpile many up and coming prospects. Doug’s accomplishments in Dallas are quite impressive, with two Western Conference titles, two President’s Trophies and a Stanley Cup.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
Here’s a look at those who range from ghost-like to flat-out invisible in this series heading into Saturday’s Game 4:
Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk
It’s hard to criticize players who still seem to have the puck all the time. And there is the fact that Datsyuk has turned into a human wrecking ball, knocking Ryan Malone into the middle of next season in the second period of Game 3. The pair also shut down the Crosby line in Games 1 and 2.
read on for more MIA players too…
from Lightning Strikes,
The NHL declined to comment, but if the smiles on the faces of Oren Koules and Len Barrie were an indication Thursday, they could have control of the team by the June 20-21 draft.
Koules, the Hollywood producer, and Barrie, the former NHLer turned real estate developer, met for 60 minutes with the NHL’s executive committee at its Sixth Avenue offices in New York. Koules called the meeting “a very good step” and Barrie said, “We’re excited.”
– Phoenix Coyotes General Manager Don Maloney announced today that Blake Wheeler, selected by the Coyotes in the 2004 Entry Draft, has rejected the Coyotes contract offer and will become an unrestricted free agent.
“We offered Blake a contract which was both commensurate with his draft position and far exceeded any guaranteed contract he can receive, under the current CBA, with any other team,” said Maloney. “He has decided, however, that becoming a free agent is in his best interest.
“We are very happy with the compensatory pick we will receive for Blake not signing, which will be the fifth pick in the second round. This is a very deep draft and we now have five picks in the first two rounds, which is very exciting.”
from Stan Fischler at Game On,
Not for a minute do I doubt that Saturday night’s Game Four of the Stanley Cup Finals will be one of the most arresting spectacles the NHL has seen in years. The Maven urges all hockey fans to watch. Perhaps more importantly, expect the Penguins to do what all those media geniuses said that they could NOT do after Game Two in Detroit, and that is get right back into the series.
Yessiree, Bob, I fully expect the Finals to be tied at two some time before 12:10 a.m. on Sunday morning.
“I don’t know why I have lasted, to tell you the truth,” he said. “There are times I have done some things I thought I was done for, but I’m still here. They must like my suits or something.”
Don Cherry at WTAE in Pittsburgh and video too…
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Mike Babcock woke up Thursday, after the Detroit Red Wings’ first loss in the Stanley Cup final and did what he usually does the morning after a game: He talked to his wife and he talked to a fellow coach Dave King — and not necessarily in that order, either.
Babcock did it for reasons that he patiently explains all the time: That lifetime learning is a core belief; and that no matter how long he stays in the game, he doesn’t pretend to have all the answers.
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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