Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Tim Panaccio of CSNPhilly,
Both (Barry) Smith and Emery’s agent, J.P. Barry, say the KHL was no summer vacation. It was serious hockey with primitive conditions outside the rink that most NHLers wouldn’t have the fortitude to tolerate.
“To go overseas to Russia to play, to me, means you really want to play,” Smith said. “It’s not easy. It is the hardest place in Europe to go and play hockey – for sure. So he chose the hardest place to play and he played very well, taking his team to first place.
“I think this speaks volumes for a kid who wants to get back in the league [NHL].”
Playing in Russia was very different than North America. Emery would have to show up at 5 p.m. – more than 24 hours before his game – at a gymnasium with other team members where they would bunk-in overnight.
“Forget what these guys were earning, they slept on cots in a gym before the game,” Barry said.
The Flyers will be announcing today the signing of Ray Emery. Good move?
added 11:16am, Official release from the Flyers on the signing…
via Scott Burnside of ESPN,
It looks like the potential opponents for the Boston Bruins in next New Year’s Day outdoor game at Fenway Park has been narrowed to two teams, the Philadelphia Flyers or Washington Capitals, ESPN.com has learned.
from Tim Panaccio of CSN Philly,
Barring a collapse in negotiations, the Flyers are expected to sign Ray Emery as their starting goalie for next season.
Several general managers at the Stanley Cup Final consider the matter a “done deal.” Emery was Ottawa’s property until released by the Senators last June.
Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren declined to confirm what others are saying at the Cup Final.
“We’ve had conversations with his agent [J.P. Barry] about a lot of things,” Holmgren said. “But I’m not going to comment on our internal discussions of players.”
from Paul Greenberg of ZDNet,
I have to tell you, the Philadelphia Flyers‘ fan engagement program is by far the single most well thought out and successful CRM strategy and program I’ve seen to date in professional sports. Bar none - including my beloved New York teams. Shame on the Rangers.
What makes this program, which is called “How You Doin’?“ exceptional in any environment is that it begins where CRM strategies and programs should begin - with the culture….
All the staff at the Philadelphia HQ of the Flyers and at the Wachovia Center are trained to greet everyone as they come into the stadium, trained to answer questions for anyone who has them, and trained to go above and beyond for customers. They take a high touch, get involved approach.
Their strategy is two pronged. First, engage the fans generally. Second, know each fan and their individual lifestyle and customize programs according. The third prong is measure, measure, measure; learn, learn, learn.
read on & thanks to a KK reader for the pointer…
from Matthew Nadu of NBC Philadelphia,
Legendary Philadelphia Flyer Dave Shultz became a South Philly icon by crashing his fists into opponent’s faces. These days Shultz is still doing some heavy crashing—on the comedy scene that is….
Now his face will be used for something other than a punching bag as the Canuck takes a swing at stand up.
more and yes, the writer forgot the ‘c’ in Schultz…
added 11:52am, It occurred to me many of the younger hockey fans may not know who Dave Schultz is, so watch him action at about the 2 minute mark in the video below. How fitting is it that Ted Lindsay is doing the color?
from Darren Dreger of TSN,
Sources tell TSN the Philadelphia Flyers have had significant discussions with Emery’s agent J.P Barry about the potential of the 26-year-old returning to the National Hockey League. ...
Following Philadelphia’s first round playoff elimination, Flyers GM Paul Holmgren acknowledged he’ll have to consider all options in goal, considering Martin Biron and Antero Niittymaki are both scheduled to become unrestricted free agents on July 1.
from Chuck Gormley of the Courier-Post,
The first order of business for the Flyers is getting a goaltender under contract. With starter Marty Biron and backup Antero Niittymaki scheduled to become unrestricted free agents on July 1, the Flyers currently have no goalies with NHL experience in the organization.
Biron wants a long-term deal and the Flyers do not, and that could open the door to a free-agent goalie such as Craig Anderson, Scott Clemmensen, Manny Fernandez or Nikolai Khabibulin signing with the Flyers on July 1. There is also talk the Flyers are interested in Atlanta goalie Kari Lehtonen.
The Flyers will spend the month of May trying to re-sign Biron, but if they are unable to come to terms they will break ties and look into making a deal at the NHL draft or on July 1.
from Chuck Gormley of the Courier-Post,
But who will be the Flyers’ No. 1 goalie at the start of the 2009-10 regular season? Holmgren and Biron acknowledged it could be two months before that question is answered.
“I think Marty is a good goalie and I think he had a good couple years here,” Holmgren said. “If we move forward with him, that will be a decision we make in the next little while.”
At 31, Biron is coming off his second full season as the Flyers’ starter. He ranked 13th in the NHL in wins (29), 25th in goals-against average (2.76) and 17th in save percentage (.915).
But the numbers that will define whether Biron stays in Philadelphia will be his average salary and the number of years he is seeking on a new contract.
At $3.5 million, Biron ranked 19th among NHL goalies this season, just below Dwayne Roloson’s $3.667 million. Roloson, who is 39, had almost identical numbers to Biron this season with 28 wins, a 2.77 GAA and a .915 save percentage.
In other words, Biron’s market value is probably exactly what he’s making now. That could be a sticking point is his insistence on a long-term contract.
from Chuck Gormley of the Courier-Post,
Flyers captain Mike Richards will undergo surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder Friday, the Courier-Post learned Tuesday.
According to club general manager Paul Holmgren, Richards is expected to need 10-12 weeks of recovery time.
Holmgren said he was also awaiting an MRI on Richards’ left shoulder, saying he might also require surgery on that shoulder as well. Richards, who Tuesday was named one of three finalists for the Selke Tro phy as the NHL’s top defensive forward, led the Flyers with five playoff points in six games.
from Chris Zelkovich of the Toronto Star,
First, we had the case of Pittsburgh’s Maxime Talbot starting a fight with Philadelphia goon Daniel Carcillo on Saturday afternoon.
According to almost everybody at Hockey Night In Canada, the fact that Talbot started a fight knowing he was going to be clobbered somehow inspired his teammates to overcome a 3-0 deficit and win the series.
Though analyst Gary Galley first said the fistic defeat would probably spell the end for Pittsburgh, he later agreed with his colleagues that Talbot’s impression of a punching bag had indeed changed the course of the game….
But here’s where the confusion comes in. That evening, the Blackhawks jumped out to a 5-1 second-period lead over the Flames.
They were dominating the Flames the way the Flyers had dominated the Penguins in the early going. Amazingly, Calgary defenceman Adam Pardy went on a Talbot-like suicide mission and attacked Chicago tough guy Ben Eager. The results were the same as Talbot’s strategic gem, a one-sided defeat – with one exception. The Flames didn’t score another goal and are now on the verge of elimination.
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org