Kukla's Korner Hockey
No matter how many times the Hawks kill off the Wings, it will never be enough to be sure Detroit is dead. Life after death is an idea that appeals to NBC and its viewers. Osgood simply sits and waits like a vulture, awaiting his turn to feast.
In fact, some NBC officials proudly will be rooting for Detroit to jump with Jimmy Howard out of their coffins (Jimmy was declared officially dead earlier this season) and scare the hell out of the Hawks and their fans this Sunday.
-Mike Kiley of Blackhawks Confidential. More on the Wings and Blackhawks from Mike.
Watch the press conference below, scheduled to begin at 12:30pm ET.
from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
This Alexandre Burrows-Stephane Auger situation is going to get messy. It’s the proverbial can of worms for everyone involved – the league, the NHL Officials’ Association, referee Auger, player Burrows and the entire Vancouver Canucks’ organization – and it’s a story that is not likely to go away any time soon.
If the events of last night unfolded as Burrows has alleged – and there is plenty of evidence, circumstantial and otherwise – to suggest they did more or less, then the NHL will have no choice but to take some form of disciplinary action against Auger, be it a reprimand, a fine, a suspension or an evaluation that could go into his file and cost him playoff games and/or money along the line or maybe even his job.
In case you missed the video evidence earlier today on KK, watch it here...
added 12:47pm, from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,
NHL director of hockey operations Colin Campbell confirmed that a league investigation has begun, and a fellow referee said Tuesday morning that Auger will face serious questioning before being allowed back on the ice to work another game.
Reached in Vancouver Tuesday morning, Auger refused to comment to sportsnet.ca. Director of officiating Terry Gregson did not immediately return a text message requesting comment.
My NHL.com blog today…
Why do I stay awake until 1:00am to watch NHL games that don’t even involve the team I follow?
Why do I get up at 6:00am to catch up on all the hockey news I may have missed during the few hours I was asleep?
via Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
The Wild fans got Cal Clutterbuck’s back by booing Pittsburgh’s Sergei Gonchar the rest of Monday’s game, but Clutterbuck was steaming after the Wild’s 4-3 victory because Gonchar took a flying elbow at his head in the third period.
Gonchar received a five-minute major for elbowing, although the Wild didn’t score on the power play.
“He better hope he retires at the end of the year, I’ll tell you that,” Clutterbuck said, a cut on the bridge of his nose. “Somebody’s going to hurt him before the end of the year. Someone will. It’s not going to be me, but someone will.”
from Sean Gordon of the Globe and Mail,
After deploying our rudimentary accounting skills, it’s hard to see how the pieces fit together for Bob Gainey under the cap next season, what with Carey Price attaining RFA status (to say nothing of the Halaks, Pouliots, D’Agostinis, S. Kostitsyns, Lapierres, etc.) The Habs have $44.8-million committed in salaries for 2010-11 (per capgeek.com), and have 13 players under one-way NHL contracts. Assuming a slight increase in the cap next year, as seems likely, that leaves something in the order of $13-14 million for the remaining 10 guys on the roster.
Although that might be a slight overestimation, as the Habs have dressed 20 players on several occasions this year - perhaps a sign of a Molson austerity regime?
Assuming $4.5-million per year for Plekanec, and that Price and Jaro Halak (also an RFA) average out at something near $3-million each (which sounds optimistic), that leaves, er, nothing for the remaining players.
from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun,
For more than half a season, (Kevin) Weekes has watched his former coach with his new team and seen Sutter try to implement his way of doing things on a Flames team that has battled through its ups and downs, yet still went into last night’s clash with the Colorado Avalanche atop the NHL’s Northwest Division.
Weekes, who retired after a 13-year pro career, says nothing he’s seen from Sutter has come as a surprise to him.
“He has his system, in terms of the way he wants to do things, what he believes in, why he believes in them and how he wants them executed. He’s very steadfast in those things.
“I know those four things are big for him,” Weekes said.
He understands making things interesting for the coach in Calgary is that New Jersey has had a way of doing things for a generation, compared to a Flames team that had little structure the past couple of years.
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
Imagine this scenario: Kovalchuk signs a 10-year contract with Atlanta for $10 million a year. Then, starting next year, outside economic forces push the league’s escrow up from 13 per cent per paycheque to say, 20 per cent.
So now he’s getting $8 million a year.
Then, in 2012, a new collective bargaining agreement between the owners and players includes another 24 per cent salary rollback and new limits on term for individual player contracts.
Finally, the Thrashers sell to new ownership, who sensibly give up on Atlanta, moving the team to Kansas City.
So Kovalchuk might end up playing for a sharply devalued, shortened contract in a city in which he doesn’t want to live for owners he doesn’t trust or like.
Now, it’s unlikely all these dynamics would come into play, but they might.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
As the Senators continue their five-game road trip tonight against the Thrashers and struggle to hang onto a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, two league executives told the Sun yesterday that Murray is trying to deal for a centre.
With top centre Jason Spezza sidelined the past three weeks, Mike Fisher struggling and Peter Regin miscast as the No. 1 pivot at the moment, the indications are Murray would like somebody who can play in a top-six role and possibly move to the wing once the team is healthy.
The most consistent centre for the Senators this season has been Chris Kelly, who has looked quite comfortable in his third-line role.
Making a deal is tough with the salary cap, but talk has started to heat up.
“That’s easier said than done,” said one NHL executive. “There’s just not a lot out there right now. Not enough teams are eliminated.”
from Phil Coffey of NHL.com,
For most of the season, the story around the Detroit Red Wings has been who is leaving the lineup with injuries. The Wings finally have some good news with Dan Cleary retuning from a separated shoulder that placed him on the club’s long injury list for a dozen games.
And so far, so good. Cleary has goals in two straight games, netting one against the Kings on Jan. 7 and another against the Sharks on Jan. 9 with the opportunity for more Tuesday night on Long Island.
“It doesn’t even look like he’s lost anything,” goalie Jimmy Howard told Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press. “He was flying out there again. He really picked that top corner there. He’s got a heck of a shot, and he definitely used it to his advantage.”
continued and more Central Division notes…
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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