Kukla's Korner Hockey
The Tennessean's Josh Cooper updated two important items on the Nashville front today, and the first comes via a tip from NHL.com: According to Cooper, Predators forward Mike Fisher's not exactly going to return in a hurry from surgery to repair a ruptured Achilles' tendon:
There is no change in the timeline for forward Mike Fisher's recovery from a ruptured Achilles, Predators general manager David Poile said.
Fisher was injured in early July and the Predators announced that he would miss four to six months.
"He's working out on a regular basis here," Poile said. "Everything is tracking to date, but the bottom line is still a four- to six-month injury. Optimistically, Thanksgiving and end of November. That's an optimistic target."
Second, Cooper reports that the Predators and restricted free agent defenseman Ryan Ellis remain "a ways apart":
from Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times,
Blackhawks president John McDonough told the Sun-Times on Wednesday that the longstanding — and to so many, infuriating — practice of organist Frank Pellico playing “The Stripper” while a woman participated in the second-intermission “Shoot the Puck” promotion will stop in the 2014-15 season.
“I think you’ve heard the last of Frank Pellico playing ‘The Stripper,’” McDonough said.
A recent online movement to ban the song, including a #BanTheStripper hashtag and an online petition, called the Hawks out for the rather blatant sexism that was inherent in the contest. The typical format included a child, a man, a celebrity, and an attractive woman — the latter rarely in, let’s say, casual hockey-fan attire. In fact, sources say a team employee has been tasked each night with finding just the right the female participant. It had become as much a part of a Hawks game as playing “Here Come the Hawks” before warmups, and “Chelsea Dagger” after goals.
McDonough wouldn’t say for certain if the Shoot the Puck selection process would be overhauled completely — he said he rarely, if ever, watches Shoot the Puck, and therefore “can’t give you an opinion” — but said the Hawks heard their fans’ message loud and clear.
from Stephen Cohen of Seattle pi,
Would-be Seattle Sonics owner Chris Hansen has signed a “non-binding” agreement with a prospective NHL owner from Vancouver, B.C., regarding the proposed arena in Seattle’s Sodo neighborhood, according to a report from KING/5 TV.
Citing sources with knowledge of talks between Hansen and Vancouver’s Victor Coleman, KING’s Chris Daniels reported on Tuesday that “the two potential ownership groups have signed a ‘non-binding’ agreement which lays out the terms for Coleman’s contribution to the project and his potential revenue streams for a hockey franchise.”
Coleman, a real estate developer now based in Los Angeles, heads one of the groups bidding for a potential NHL team, and has been involved in ongoing discussions for a Seattle franchise. Hansen is the hedge-fund manager who headed an attempt to buy the Sacramento Kings and move them to Seattle in 2013.
As many of you probably know the Ice Bucket Challenge for ALS awareness is making its round on the internet and people are challenging one another via social media. Watching players do it was fun, watching people I know and interact with regularly start getting challenged turned it into “just a matter of time.”
Just when I thought I escaped again…
GLENDALE, ARIZONA - Arizona Coyotes Co-Owner, President and CEO Anthony LeBlanc announced today that the Coyotes and Arizona based Gila River Casinos have agreed to terms on a nine-year partnership agreement that includes the naming rights for Glendale Arena. The agreement is pending approval from Glendale City Council on September 9. If approved, the new name of the venue will be Gila River Arena. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Craig Custance of ESPN just held an online chat...
Realistic expectations for the Lightning this year? Especially in regards to Bishop, Drouin, Stamkos, and the revamped blue line. Thanks.
Craig Custance I like Tampa. They've been patient with their young players and the payoff is coming now. There will be competition for spots among some really, good talented players. Drouin is a guy I expect to challenge for the Calder. I think it's asking a lot for Bishop to repeat last year's success, so I'd expect a little downgrade there. But there's so much good young talent there in Tampa that they can make up for it. They're definitely headed in the right direction.
What's your outlook on the ducks this season? How does their goaltending situation shake out? Do they have enough to take home the cup? Thanks!
Craig Custance Bob Murray is taking a pretty calculated risk in going young with his goalies but it allowed him to bolster his team elsewhere. Plus, if it goes sideways, he's left himself enough flexibility to add a goalie later if need be. But Gibson is a stud, I would have made the same decision. If Kesler is healthy come playoff time, I like the Ducks a lot. The West is ridiculous so it will come down to matchups but they're in that group of teams capable of winning it all.
Mike Smith has had one really good year in an 8-year career. Seems to me the seven years of mediocrity are more indicative of how good he is than the one outlier year. So why do analysts assume he can return to 2011-12 form? Arizona is going to regret that contract, if they don't already.
Criag Custance I think it's asking a lot of Mike Smith to be a .930 goalie and I agree, that year definitely jumps out at you. But his style of play, the way he plays the puck so well, fits what Phoenix does. It's such a weapon to have when your goalie can be such a part of the puck retrieval process. That, to me, is what makes Mike Smith special. Signing any goalie to term is risky, especially one who doesn't have a long track record.
from Katie Strang of ESPN,
Modin, who won a Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2004, said he thinks that experience will be invaluable for the team moving forward, especially for the young players who got a taste of what playoff action is truly like.
[[I was] impressed with how the team came together and seemed to find their identity during the run last year,Modin told ESPN.com when reached via email from Sweden. think the coaches and the players were looking to play that type of game all season but didn't really get the consistency early on. The team has lots of young talented players with limited experience that played big roles during the Pittsburgh series. Going through that will make them stronger both as individuals and as a team.
Speaking of young players who will be influential in the team’s future, Modin thinks getting dynamic, young center Ryan Johansen is a top priority for the club. Johansen, a 22-year-old restricted free agent, remains at a contract stalemate with Columbus as negotiations have grown contentious at times this summer.
“I hope they can agree on a contract before camp,” Modin told ESPN.com. “I think Ryan is and will be a big part of this team’s success. [He’s] a very talented player that can develop into something special.”
from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,
No matter the state of the hockey team in the Air Canada Centre, from now on there’ll be solid bench strength just outside.
Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment has begun construction on its long-discussed touchstone team monument. As revealed in the Toronto Sun in January, the concept will be an evolving art piece of famous players from nearly 100 years of franchise history, in various poses on a team bench in Maple Leaf Square.
A source familiar with the project says the first three players have been chosen, with details to be released Thursday morning at the chosen site, near the ACC’s West entrance. The first phase will place three life-sized statues along the bench, adding at least three more per year to a maximum of 10 or 11, leading to the club’s 100th anniversary in 2017-18.
“We’re still looked upon to finally getting over that hump and I feel the we can do it. We’re going to pick up where we left off. At the start of the year, we struggled and that’s going to be a big thing for us. We have to start the season well, because I think last year we really dug ourselves in a hole early on and that killed us going into the rest of the season. It gives you confidence if you can start off winning and you realize you have a good team.”
-Jordan Eberle of the Edmonton Oilers. More on Eberle from Derek Van Diest of the Edmonton Sun.
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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