Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Michale Arace of Puck-rakers,
There are plenty of scouts in the press box at the Natty tonight. On hand are representatives from Vancouver, New Jersey, the Rangers, Ottawa, Florida, Pittsburgh, Montreal, Tampa Bay and Detroit….
Now, this is just me talking:... Could it be that, under these circumstances, Manny Malhotra ($1.5 million) is a luxury on their fourth line?
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
MacTavish is giving his captain lots of rope in exhibitions, unlike kids who tend to hang themselves as they try to compete against the bigger boys.
“We have to give some guys a little bit of slack, Ethan in particular, because he hasn’t played a lot of hockey over the last two years,” said MacTavish.
“I’m giving him the latitude to work through his game. It’s been a long time between games. The intensity and the physical play are the last thing I think about with Ethan ... your game gets out of sync a little bit and sometimes you look in the wrong places, but he’ll be fine. It’s fine-tuning the systems and positional play with him.”
MacTavish is still auditioning Moreau with Pisani and Penner, as a quasi-scoring, big-bodychecking line, although Pisani, for all his defensive acumen, is still trying to get the hang of taking faceoffs.
Craig Custance of Sporting News Today looks at the Eastern and Western Conference and includes his All Break-Out team for each conference too. Start here to read…
from Lightning Strikes,
The Lightning on Friday got down to the required 24 players, including extra goaltender Karri Ramo, by placing wing Jason Ward on injured reserve with what coach Barry Melrose said is a groin injury sustained Thursday on “choppy” ice.
Other moves included categorizing defenseman Paul Ranger (shoulder) as a non-roster player because he did not pass a physical, and putting center Jeff Halpern (knee) on long-term disability.
continue for the roster…
from Sean Gordon and David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
The Nashville Predators’ ownership tangle has taken another twist with the startling admission the NHL team has defaulted on a $40-million (all currency U.S.) loan….
Those close to the situation believe the latest legal gambit by the Predators owners suggests they are in deep trouble, and by exposing their financial woes publicly, they’re signalling to sponsors, season-ticket holders and potential investors they aren’t planning to be around in the long term.
from Steve Buffery of the Toronto Sun,
So while Hollweg brings an edge and willingness to fight, nobody on the Leafs squad at this moment will strike a sense of fear or dread into the opposition.
“I think it could be a concern,” Wilson acknowledged yesterday, when asked about his club’s lack of toughness. “But, again, we haven’t had our full lineup all together.”
Wilson insisted that an NHL team does not need the big heavyweight any more, as the game has changed and a mid-sized scrapper, who can also skate and hit, like Hollweg, can be just as valuable.
“A lot of times, that’s just sideshow—heavyweight fights heavyweight. What’s that got to do with the game?” the veteran coach said. “If you just got a guy who plays two or three minutes and can’t skate or do anything, I don’t know if that serves a purpose. (But) we’ll see how our team is this year and if we have to address that, we will.”
from Mick Kern of the NHL Home Ice Blog,
If you had to win ONE big game, be it for the Stanley Cup, or, if your expectations are more realistic, be it for first place in your division, or even the last playoff spot in the conference…which player would you most want to have on your side?
A few conditions, but of course. First, no Hockey Hall-of-Famers can be considered. Way too obvious. Second, this one may stir up some debate as to what defines a star, but any player most fans would recognize as a star cannot be included (though many did vote for Danny Gare…and we allowed him to be included, so go figure). Third, the player can come from any era, any team, but we had to have a concrete, logical reason why.
from Dan Wood of the OC Register,
Aspiring NHL players Bobby Ryan and Brett Festerling, whose training-camp performances have put them in solid contention to be on the Ducks’ opening-night roster, are at opposite ends of a curious twist in the league’s salary-cap system.
Ryan, a winger chosen second overall in the 2005 entry draft, is in jeopardy of not making the team because of a relatively big contract that includes an $821,700 base salary at the NHL level and $925,000 more in potential performance bonuses.
Festerling, a defenseman who was never drafted and originally joined the Ducks on a training-camp tryout in 2005, could land a spot in part because his $473,300 NHL salary would be barely above the league minimum of $450,000.
from Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star,
With Chelios going on long-term injured reserve and his salary not counting against the $56.7-million US cap, the Wings payroll now sits at $56.250-million US.
“The deadline (to trade a defenceman) possibly could be pushed back,” Wings general manager Ken Holland said.
The choice appears to be down to either Derek Meech or Kyle Quincey. “I think each of the kids has played okay,” Holland said. “There’s been the odd giveaway, but all (of them have) played pretty well.”
more on the Wings…
Khabibulin’s agent, Jay Grossman told TSN that his client has playing options with the Russian Continental Hockey League (KHL).
“Nik has several options, both here and over there,” Grossman told TSN.
“However, nothing has been finalized and by no means is anything imminent.”
Grossman admitted that he would like to get a deal worked out quickly so that Khabibulin could get back on the ice.
“Nobody is looking to drag this thing out,” he told TSN.
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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