Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the CP,
Now 43 and busier than ever, Yzerman paradoxically looks younger and fresher than he did during the final injury-filled seasons of his career with the Detroit Red Wings. The intensity that made him one of the greatest NHLers in history is still there, but there’s also a renewed vibrancy that has come with new challenges.
Perhaps that’s why it seemed just a little strange to see him among the inductees to Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame on Wednesday. Yzerman is a little more than two years removed from announcing his retirement, but his contributions to the game continue as a vice-president with the Red Wings and the executive director of Canada’s 2010 Olympic men’s hockey team.
The KHL recently dealt with the fallout from Alexei Cherepanov’s death by adopting a list of resolutions in hopes of avoiding such tragedies in the future.
Today they’ve issued another press release related to those issues, this one inviting members of the media to observe their medical evaluation process. Presumably this openness is meant to reassure current and prospective players of the KHL’s commitment to their welfare.
Full text of the press release is available below.
From Bill Meltzer at NHL.com:
[Patrick] Thoresen elected to play this season Europe because he was unable to get a 1-way contract in the NHL and stood to make more money playing in Switzerland than he would have on the minor-league end of a 2-way deal in the NHL. But his ambition is not to win the Swiss scoring title. He has made clear all along that we wants to return to North America.
“My goal is to play well enough to get a 1-way contract and become an NHL player again,” he said.
Thoresen has 31 points in 19 games this season.
from Patrick White of the Globe and Mail,
Gilles Lupien, a prominent National Hockey League player agent, has never gone public about the disturbing phone calls he received from a young junior hockey player 20 years ago.
But with many in the hockey world treating the lurid allegations coming out of former junior hockey coach David Frost’s sexual exploitation trial as an aberration, the memory has been weighing heavily on his mind.
“The culture of junior hockey has to change,” said the former Montreal Canadiens defenceman, who now represents Vancouver Canucks’ goalie Roberto Luongo, Boston Bruins goalie Manny Fernandez and 13 other NHL players.
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
I find it hard to believe that Igor Larionov, one of the classiest people ever in the game, is finding an ally in the Kontinental League with president Alexander Medvedev.
Larionov was always all about principle. Instead of defecting from Russia to play in the NHL in his prime, he bided his time and went through the proper channels before coming to the NHL. Once he got here, he proved to be a great teammate and person and was part of the success of several teams along the way.
Now he’s working with a man who has no respect for the sanctity of a contract, as evidenced by the KHL’s poaching of Pavel Valentenko and Matt Murley recently by teams in Russia.
read on plus Leafs/Sundin and Stars/Avery notes…
From Iain MacIntyre at the Vancouver Sun,
Scott Niedermayer, the 35-year-old from Cranbrook who will go to the Hockey Hall of Fame when his career ends, said Friday he wants to be part of Team Canada for the 2010 Olympic tournament in Vancouver.
The Anaheim Ducks star hasn’t decided if or where he’ll play in the National Hockey League next season, but knows he wants to play for Canada. That probably means he’ll sign another NHL contract if he becomes an unrestricted free agent next July.
“It would be a great experience if I was able to be part of that team and compete for your country, in your own county, in your home province,” Niedermayer said. “I really haven’t decided [about the NHL], but I’d love to play in the Olympics.”
From the Associated Press today the allegation from Col. Vladimir Karpenko, a spokesman for the commander of Russia’s Railway Troops, that Alexei Cherepanov (who, of course, recently died during a game) was in fact playing “illegally” and should have been serving his mandatory military service at the time.
The full story is here.
The Canadiens’ young prospect Pavel Valentenko signed a deal in Russia earlier this week, and the Habs responded today by suspending the player from the team and presenting their concerns to the IIHF.
Valentenko’s Canadian agent Roland Hedges tries to explain his client’s actions. From the Canadian Press via TSN:
Hedges said Valentenko has been supporting his family since he was 15, and took a pay cut to pursue his NHL dream when he signed with Montreal before the 2007-08 season.
After playing all of last season and the first four games of this season with Hamilton, he was given permission to return to Russia to attend to a family matter. He said the signing was not premeditated.
“His intention was to go home to see his parents and see what he could do,” said Hedges. “When he got home, his father already had the deal done (with Dynamo).
“And if you saw the size of the deal, you’d see why.”
New York, NY / Toronto, ON (October 31, 2008) – NHL Network today announced it has reached a one-year extension for broadcast rights to games from the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA), Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA), and Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC Hockey).
The broadcast package provides NHL Network with 19 ‘Game of the Week’ match-ups that will air Friday nights through the remainder of the season. The deal also includes the ECAC Hockey Semifinals and Final.
“You got such freedom, it’s hard to believe. In the U.S. you have so many rules, everything’s regulated and structured. When you make a mistake you pay for it — a lot. … In Russia you don’t have to worry if you make a mistake. And that’s what I love about living here. There’s always another way to make up for it. Nothing’s too serious. Nothing is a problem, and at the same time, everything’s a problem. But somehow no matter how bad things are, you can always work it out.”
-Jaromir Jagr, read more at Slap Shot…
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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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