Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Rick Westhead of the Toronto Star,
On the heels of an MVP-calibre season in which he scored 65 goals, added 47 assists and led the Washington Capitals into an unlikely playoff berth, the 22-year-old’s marketing representatives are close to announcing Ovechkin’s first major sponsorship contracts.
In the works are deals with Ferrari and U.S. mobile phone company Verizon, says Konstantin Selinevich, who spearheads Ovechkin’s off-ice business relationships. Selinevich says talks continue with others, including Coca-Cola. Just last month, the Wasserman Media Group, a powerful sports marketing agency in Los Angeles, was hired to buttress efforts to land endorsements for Ovechkin.
While the star already has sponsor agreements with Reebok’s CCM brand, trading-card company Upper Deck and Hype, an energy drink, none has put much marketing muscle behind him. (Selinevich says that will change this summer when Reebok rolls out an Ovechkin clothing line.)
from Lynn Zinser at Slap Shot,
“I’m going to play tomorrow to try to win the series back, not thinking about myself. It’s going to take care of itself. I’m going to try to play to win the hockey game, to have a chance to play the next game. That is my goal.”...
Jagr may still be back if he does not find what he is looking for with another N.H.L. team. All the talk of him returning to Russia is just that, talk. The Rangers probably will not bring back Brendan Shanahan or Martin Straka to a team looking to get younger, but there is little doubt that the Rangers still believe in Jagr. It is a matter of whether he believes back.
more on Jagr…
from Rich Hammond of the LA Daily News,
The Kings declined to release specific numbers, but said they’re losing more money per year now than before the lockout. At the start of the lockout, the Kings claimed to be losing $8 to $10 million a year.
“We’re building our organization differently, to meet the reality that we’re losing even more than we did before the lockout,” chief marketing officer Chris McGowan said. “We have to run a better business.”
Thus, the ticket-price increases, even coming off a season in which the Kings tied for the fewest points in the NHL. The Kings believe the increases are necessary, in part, to help stabilize their bottom line.
from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
Therrien and his staff have handled the preparations. And the players have taken it upon themselves to police themselves.
“Come playoff time, everyone’s got to step up and be on the same page,” winger Ryan Malone said. “And when you’re not on the same page, you’re going to hear it from the other 19 guys on the bench that you better be on the right page.
“We’re helping each other out when we need it, but we’ll also give each other a kick in the butt if we need a kick in the butt.”
from Mark Purdy of the Mercury News,
The Sharks were dynamically incremental Wednesday night. That’s how it must be from this point, as long as they are still playing. But at least they are still playing. After a mandatory 2-1 victory over Dallas, they are still playing. They are behind three victories to one. But they are still playing.
“A lot of people thought we were going to lose tonight,” said Joe Thornton, who emerged from a three-game fog of frustration and hit some people and assisted on the winning goal. “But the 20 guys in this room had faith. We still want to make a series out of this.”
NEW YORK (April 30, 2008)—Mike Babcock of the Detroit Red Wings, Bruce Boudreau of the Washington Capitals and Guy Carbonneau of the Montreal Canadiens are the three finalists for the Jack Adams Award, presented to the head coach who has “contributed the most to his team’s success,” the National Hockey League announced today.
Members of the NHL Broadcasters’ Association submitted ballots for the Jack Adams Award at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters announced as finalists. The winner will be announced Thursday, June 12 during the 2008 NHL Awards Television Special, which will be broadcast live throughout Canada on CBC and the United States on VERSUS from the historic Elgin Theatre in Toronto.
from Pierre LeBrun at Sportsnet,
Just the NHL’s luck to have three second-round playoff series go into the toilet, eh?
The interest level will go down dramatically now that we have three of the four series at 3-0. Canadians have endured a long, hard winter, one of the worst in years in some parts, and given the option between watching a 3-0 series play out to its inevitable end or to go out and enjoy a beautiful spring day/evening, I think you all know what most fans will do.
And it’s a pity, because the hockey in these playoffs has been terrific.
via Dave Stubbs at Habs Inside/Out,
The Canadiens have announced that Jaroslav Halak will start in goal tonight in Game 4.
It will be the first career playoff start for the 22-year-old from Bratislava, who played 19 minutes in Monday’s Game 3 in relief of Carey Price, stopping both shots he faced.
from Mike Brophy of the Hockey News,
One minute they look like bona fide Stanley Cup contenders; the next they look like they don’t deserve to be among the league’s 16 playoff teams. One minute coach Ron Wilson looks like a deserving Jack Adams Trophy candidate (for NHL coach of the year); the next he looks like he couldn’t guide a peewee house league team. One minute Joe Thornton looks like a Hart Trophy winner; the next he looks like, well, you can’t really find him.
Therein lies the problem with the Sharks: consistency.
And while it isn’t impossible to come back from a 3-0 series deficit, it is highly improbable. At this point I’d suggest you don’t spend too much time listening for the Shark warning horn.
From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
Penguins center Max Talbot is believed to have broken his right foot blocking a shot during the Penguins’ 5-3 victory in Game 3 of their second-round playoff series against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden last night.
Talbot, one of several players hobbled after blocking shots last night, had his foot in a walking boot when he reported to the Garden for practice today.
Team officials declined to discuss the precise nature of Talbot’s injury, or his prognosis. Talbot also declined to talk about it, but when asked if he expects to be able to play again—albeit not at a specific time—he responded simply, “I hope so.”
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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