Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Dan Wood of Ducks Blog at the OC Register,
Booed mercilessly in nearly every NHL arena except his own, Pronger is perhaps the league’s most misunderstood individual. Certainly, he has crossed the line at times, as eight career suspensions attest, but fans who are convinced that Pronger is nothing but evil are severely misguided.
Pronger himself often fuels the perception that he is a bad guy, perhaps as something of a defense mechanism and undoubtedly to place further fear into the heads of opponents. Brief interactions with Pronger can definitely leave the wrong impression, as evidenced by an incident after one Ducks road game against the Minnesota Wild.
With a collection of reporters nearby, Pronger loudly stated that anyone interested should gather around because he was going to speak only once. Those who knew him thought nothing of it. It was just Pronger being Pronger.
from Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer,
A boatload of young talent was traded. Moreover, Pronger is in the final year of a contract that will pay him $6.25 million. There are no assurances that he will stay beyond this season, though Holmgren is eager to negotiate an extension, and Pronger’s agent, Pat Morris, is optimistic that a long-term deal can get done.
The trade also leaves the Flyers with precious little salary-cap space.
They are about $5 million under the new $56.8 million cap - and still have to add a backup goalie, a right winger (they want to re-sign Mike Knuble, who has drawn interest from the Penguins), and perhaps another defenseman and a fourth-line center adept at winning face-offs.
It is the second daring move Holmgren has made in the off-season. The first brought a controversial goalie, Ray Emery, whose low salary of $1.5 million and promise caused the Flyers to overlook his previous antics - and enabled them to afford Pronger.
from Kevin Kurz of PhiladelphiaFlyers.com,
“I made it sort of clear [and the end of the season] I would like to get a hammer, a guy who makes life miserable for the other team. This is one of those guys,” said the general manager. “I think we’ve made some strides in terms of revamping our defense over the last few years. You put Chris in our mix, and it makes our defense a good group.”
Pronger, who admitted he was not shocked at the trade, also thinks he will fit in perfectly with his new team.
“The style of the play that the Flyers have been known to play certainly fits my game,” he said via conference call. “They’ve got some great young talent and I hope to help not only develop the team into being one of the top teams in the league, but winning a Stanley Cup. I think that’s why we all play the game, is to win, and certainly the Stanley Cup is the pinnacle for our sport.”
from Tim Sassone of Between
The Circles at the Chicago Daily-Herald, “We talked and the price was a little too stiff for us to pay,” Tallon said. “It would have been some good prospects and some players off our roster. We weren’t willing to overpay for him. We like him and he’s a great player, but we want to make a commitment to our core players.”
That’s fine, but then Tallon said, “Philadelphia obviously feels they’re close.”
Wait a second. Aren’t the Hawks close too? The rebuilding is over. This is a 104-point team that went to the West finals and the goal should be winning a Stanley Cup next season because nobody knows what the shelf life of this group will be. Even if it might have cost two No. 1 picks and perhaps Niklas Hjalmarsson and another prospect, missing out on Pronger was not a good start to the off-season.
from Craig Custance of the Sporting News,
Paul Holmgren knows he gave up a lot. To get Chris Pronger from Anaheim, Philadelphia surrendered promising young defenseman Luca Sbisa, Joffrey Lupul, two first-round picks and a third round pick.
“Ask me a year from now, a couple years from now if it was worth that,” Holmgren said here at the draft in Montreal.
But in acquiring Pronger, he served notice to the Pittsburgh Penguins that Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin’s days of roaming free in front of Philadelphia goalies are over. In Pronger, they now have that nasty defenseman who will make it miserable on the Penguins and everybody else the Flyers play next season. Holmgren wouldn’t call him the missing piece, but his style of play was certainly something the Flyers didn’t have. Now they do.
via Darren Dreger’s Twitter,
Ducks and Flyers in serious discussion over Chris Pronger.
added 7:09pm, via TSN,
The Anaheim Ducks have traded defenceman Chris Pronger to the Philadelphia Flyers.
no mention of any names yet, but check the link soon…
Update 7:16pm: From Patrick Williams at the Draft for Kukla’s Korner today—
Also, there is talk circulating that Philadelphia’s Joffrey Lupul is heading back to Anaheim. It is not known whether Pronger and Lupul are part of separate deals, however.
added 7:22pm, From Erin Nicks at the Draft for KK,
Risers chattering excitedly about the Pronger-to-Philly trade. Questions abound about how he will get along with notorious loose cannon Ray Emery, and whether we’re on our way to seeing the Broad Street Bullies, v. 2.0.
added 7:35pm, Anaheim gets Lupul, Sbisa and 2 firsts.
*original post time 6:36 ET
from Chuck Gormley of the Courier-Post,
Despite months of preparation and countless mock drafts, the Flyers may very well steal the show tonight by landing the rights to Bouwmeester, a smooth-skating, hard-hitting defenseman who has identified the Flyers as one of six teams he would play for next season.
The only way for the Flyers to fit Bouwmeester’s projected $7 million salary under the cap is for Holmgren to include one of their defensemen—perhaps Matt Carle and his $3.4 million cap hit—in a deal with the Panthers or another NHL team. The Flyers are also top-heavy at the forward position, where the cap numbers for Daniel Briere ($6.5 million), Simon Gagne ($5.25 million) and Joffrey Lupul ($4.25 million) have become restrictive.
If Holmgren is confident Bouwmeester wants to play in Philadelphia, he might wait until July 1 to sign him and work out a subsequent trade to shed salary, much the way Bob Clarke did in 2005, when he signed Peter Forsberg, then traded Jeremy Roenick for future considerations.
from Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer,
Before the start of the free-agent period, a player can tell his team - in Bouwmeester’s case, Florida - he is willing to talk with a team that is interested in acquiring his rights.
Bouwmeester has not given the Flyers permission to talk with him and see if he would sign for X amount of dollars before they made a deal for him.
He apparently hasn’t given any team permission, an NHL source said.
“My gut sense is that they can’t get him to agree to talk to anybody now,” said a Flyers official who asked to remain anonymous. “That’s the wrinkle.”
more on the Flyers/Bouwmeester talk…
NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly met with reporters Monday in Phoenix after the latest U.S. Bankruptcy Court hearings regarding the Coyotes franchise. In that hearing, Judge Redfield T. Baum approved an accelerated schedule for an auction sale among local bidders who would keep the team in Glendale, Ariz. The local bidder deadline would be Aug. 5. Baum also set Sept. 10 as a fallback date for a relocation auction. Here is an edited transcript of Daly’s conversation with the media.
Daly: We’re pleased that the judge adopted the two-tiered approach to the auction, and we’re confident – we’ve said all along we’re confident – there’s a viable offer that will make this team viable in Glendale, and now we’ll let that process play out.
Q: How important was it for you guys to go first?
A: I think it’s important. It was very important. That’s what we’ve preached all along, and our objective all along has been to find a local owner who will make the team viable in Glendale and will generate enough cash to pay the creditors. That’s what our objective has been.
Joe Haggerty of WEEI says so. At one time, it was believed the Capitals were the favorite to be the opponent, but it now looks like the Flyers.
I do know Tarik El-Bashir of Captals Insider wrote earlier today that it looked doubtful that the Caps would be playing on New Year’s Day.
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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