Kukla's Korner Hockey
IGINLA RECORDS 1,200TH CAREER POINT IN WIN OVER PREDATORS
Jarome Iginla (1-0—1) recorded the 1,200th point of his NHL career in the Colorado Avalanche’s 3-0 shutout win over the Nashville Predators. The Avalanche improved to 21-18-11 (53 points) this season, two points behind the Calgary Flames, who currently hold the final wild card spot in the Western Conference. Colorado extended its season-high home winning streak to four straight games and is 6-1-0 in its last seven games at the Pepsi Center.
* With his team-leading 16th goal of the season, Iginla became the 47th player in NHL history to record 1,200 points (576-624—1,200) and tied Dino Ciccarelli for 46th on the NHL’s all-time points list. With 576 career goals, Iginla is only one shy of tying Mark Recchi for 19th on the NHL’s all-time goals list.
“I’ve been here a long time, it’s a place that I hold in my heart, and obviously if I was asked differently or it came to that, you cross those bridges when you come to them. As of right now, I’m a member of the Hurricanes and that’s what I’m hoping to be, but you never know what can happen as you move forward.”
-Eric Staal of the Carolina Hurricanes. More on Staal, who is now playing left wing, from Luke DeCock of the News & Observer.
from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,
Hockey’s two primary minor league circuits had quite the dance this week, with the American Hockey League and the ECHL trading towns like hockey card collectors at a trade show.
When the dust settles, we’ll have a Pacific Division of five teams in the AHL and a migration in the ECHL — which at one time stood for East Coast Hockey League — to the Eastern side of the continent. Then, over time, I believe we’ll see Vancouver bring their AHL affiliate from Utica into British Columbia (likely Abbotsford), Colorado open up an AHL affiliate in-state, and the Coyotes go from Portland, Maine to Tucson or the Prescott, Arizona area.
Expansion Las Vegas will set up an AHL farm club somewhere nearby, and if Seattle ever comes on board we could see as many as 11 AHL clubs out West, including the Texas Stars in Austin.
For now though, the five-team Pacific Division will have some growing pains.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
From the first week of December through the NHL all-star break last weekend, the early Eastern games on Saturday nights on the CBC and the Rogers networks had an average audience of 1.696 million, down 6 per cent from the same period a year ago when the games were only on the CBC and drew an average audience of 1.803 million. A lot of this can be blamed on the dismal performance of the Toronto Maple Leafs, whose audiences drive the ratings more than any other team.
Things are worse for the Western games, as the average audience from December through January was 765,000, a 19-per-cent decline from the previous year. And audiences in the most prized demographic for advertisers, ages 25 to 54, are down 25 per cent compared to 2013-14.
Another big event did not go well for Rogers, as the audience for the Winter Classic outdoor game between the Washington Capitals and the Chicago Blackhawks on Jan. 1 drew just over 1 million viewers, down almost 2.6 million from the 2014 game, which had 3.6 million viewers. However, that was understandable because the 2014 game featured the Maple Leafs and the Detroit Red Wings.
Since Rogers budgeted for a 20-per-cent increase in viewers this season and went to advertisers with a similar increase in rates, the declines are continuing bad news.
The goal stands...
Did he lose the puck or just relax?
from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,
It’s way too early to say if Nathan Horton is on the road to a full recovery from his debilitating back condition, the Blue Jackets cautioned.
But Horton’s presence at the morning skate on Thursday and his general outlook and attitude when he lunched with members of the front office this week have raised optimism that his career might not be finished.
Horton did not speak to the media on Thursday, and his agent, Paul Krepelka, said all comments on his situation would come through the Blue Jackets. President of hockey operations John Davidson said Horton had a “little light in his eye” when they had lunch with general manager Jarmo Kekalainen.
“There’s been some progress there. He is feeling a little better,” Davidson said. “I don’t know what that means in the big picture, but he’s better now than he was earlier this season. His whole attitude was different — better — than the last time we saw him.”
Coach Todd Richards chatted only briefly with Horton on Thursday, he said.
“In my heart, I’ve always believed he’s going to play again,” Richards said. “I still feel that way.”
A little over 2 1/2 minutes of highlights...
from the CP at NHL.com,
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman says advertisements could be included on jerseys at the World Cup of Hockey.
The league has so far resisted putting ads on the sweaters of its 30 teams, but Bettman said Friday that corporate logos on jerseys are possible for the tournament in 2016.
"World Cup, international competition, I don't know," Bettman said at a press conference at Rogers Arena. "We may take a look at it. It might be a valuable opportunity."
None of North America's four major professional sports leagues currently have ads on jerseys, but the practice is widespread elsewhere in the world.
Bettman said that won't be happening any time soon in the NHL.
We have five NHL games on the schedule tonight plus a few alternatives too...
from Sam Cosentino of Sportsnet,
Friday Night Hockey makes its way back to Kingston for an OHL tilt pitting the Erie Otters up against the Kingston Frontenacs. It’s also a match-up of world junior gold medalists Connor McDavid and Lawson Crouse.
Erie’s win-streak came to an end on Thursday when they dropped a 6-5 decision to the Peterborough Petes. The Otters have still won six of their past seven. The high-scoring trio of Connor McDavid, Dylan Strome and Alex DeBrincat got a boost when Remi Elie and Jake Marchment were brought in from Belleville to add depth to an already potent lineup.
continued and this game will be on the NHL Network US starting at 7:00pm ET tonight.
DETROIT – Olympia Entertainment has announced that tonight’s “Duel in the D” between the University of Michigan and Michigan State University at Joe Louis Arena is sold out. College hockey fans can catch all the action of tonight’s game between the inter-state rivals on FOX Sports Detroit at 7:30 p.m.
Michigan and Michigan State have met at least once per season at Joe Louis Arena since 1990, with the Wolverines holding the series advantage at The Joe with a 14-9-4 record.
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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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