Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jason Kay of the Hockey News,
Seinfeld had the Summer of George. I’m predicting 2008-09 will be the Winter of Some Original Six Team. Theoretically, I’m not supposed to cheer, but deep down I’ll have a soft spot this season for these three golden oldie franchises:
Montreal: The Habs are celebrating their 100th anniversary this year, they’re holding the All-Star Game and the entry draft at Bell Centre and the club is a bona fide contender in the East. It’d be sweet to see the NHL’s most storied franchise reach the peak again.
He’s (Brett Hull) done a wonderful job and I knew that he wanted to be involved in putting a team together, but he had just been retired two years and all of a sudden he’s general manager in Dallas and doing a masterful job of putting his team into the third round. I think if they had maybe a little more astute coaching, they might have beat Detroit. I said before the playoffs started that it would be Pittsburgh and Dallas in the finals and I wasn’t far astray.
more from Bobby Hull in a Q & A at the the Daily Gleaner…
from Michael Russo of the Star Tribune,
Risebrough said he planned to call Gaborik this weekend to set up the meeting.
“I haven’t arranged it yet, but obviously I want to sit down with Marian while I’m over there,” Risebrough said Friday from his offseason home in Banff, Alberta. “I just want to make sure we’re on the same page.”
Gaborik will make $7.5 million in the final year of his contract this season. His average salary cap hit is $6.33 million.
The Wild plans to make an offer averaging in the $8.5 million cap-hit range. As of today, if Gaborik signed any contract averaging more than $7.8 million and less than $8.7 million, he would have the fourth-largest average contract in the NHL after superstars Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin and right above Brad Richards and Vincent Lecavalier.
from Michael Traikos of the National Post,
The Toronto Maple Leafs are one step closer to getting rid of Bryan McCabe.
According to general manager Cliff Fletcher, the high-paid defenceman has “softened his stance” in regards to waiving his no-trade clause. With six weeks remaining until training camp opens, the Leafs are now waiting for McCabe to provide a list of teams he would be willing to play for next season.
“That’s controlled by Bryan,” Fletcher said. “I’m not going to start talking to teams until he tells me what teams he is willing to go to.”
from Greg Logan of Newsday,
Former Tampa Bay coach John Tortorella, who was viewed by many as the most high-profile and possibly most high-priced candidate for the Islanders’ head-coaching vacancy, apparently is out of the mix. Money isn’t a major issue for Isles owner Charles Wang, but there always was a question whether Tortorella and a team committed to long-term development plan were the right fit for each other.
Islanders general manager Garth Snow is expected to sharply narrow his long list of candidates over the weekend and reach a decision on a successor to Ted Nolan early next week, an NHL source said. When contacted by Newsday, Tortorella politely declined to comment on his role in the Isles’ search process.
From Dan Wood at Ducks Blog,
Just because we haven’t heard anything about it lately doesn’t mean that something couldn’t still come from the Ducks’ formal tampering charge against the Edmonton Oilers.
The NHL gave Edmonton until Friday to respond to the charge filed last month by Ducks general manager Brian Burke after comments made by then-Oilers general manager Kevin Lowe during a July 4 interview with Edmonton’s Team 1260 radio.
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly, who is on vacation this week, is expected to have something to say on the matter after receiving and processing the Oilers’ response.
via WGR 550,
WGR 550 has learned that the Sabres have signed veteran defenseman Teppo Numminen to a contract today. Numminen missed all but one game last season with a heart ailment. The 40-year old underwent successful heart surgery in September of 2007. Terms of the deal were not given.
Update 3:35pm ET: From the Buffalo Sabres, Numminen’s deal has been confirmed—
Buffalo Sabres GM Darcy Regier announced today the Sabres have signed unrestricted free agent defenseman Teppo Numminen to a one-year contract.
from Dan Rosen of NHL.com,
NHL.com: What do you think is the greatest challenge for the NHL today?
RF: “Oh, well, I think the on-ice portion has made some great strides in opening up the game since the lockout season. I have always felt going way back that our League has the best players not only from North America, but from the world. To allow these guys to show off their talents and display what they can do on thin blades with the puck, and force other players in the League to emulate them and elevate their level will make our game better. I have never been a fan of allowing the other players to pull down the more skilled guys, and in the last few years the game has gotten faster and there are plays that people are just shaking their heads at.
On the other side, the challenge will always be keeping that financial balance. The players deserve to make a good living at what they do and the franchises and owners deserve to make money for their investment and risk.
From Evan Weiner at NHL.com,
The NHL was allegedly interested in moving one of its financially failing teams there in the mid 1970s, and Edmonton was very receptive to either getting a failed team or being part of an NHL-WHA merger.
Skalbania gave Oilers owner Peter Pocklington a chance to add a Canadian icon, Gretzky, which figured to bolster the Oilers’ chances of getting into the NHL. There were two catches. Skalbania offered Gretzky’s services to both Pocklington’s Oilers and to the Winnipeg ownership group and “the Gretzky sweepstakes” would involve a game of backgammon. [...]
Over the years, some people have said that Skalbania really did set down those parameters and others have said the “bet” was just a fable. But there is one man who said the trade really happened over a backgammon board.
First Zetterberg, now Hudler… Maybe the Wings should do a season ticket push using the significant others!
thanks to SnapShots for the heads-up.
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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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