Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jim Gintonio of Ice Chips at the Arizona Republic,
Q: Any special challenges the Stars present?
A: “What? Say again, translate, seriously. No, no, I never understand the question.”
Q: Any challenges .. the biggest challenge … the Stars present to you?
A: “You mean like the stars in the sky or the Dallas Stars?”
Q: Both of them.
A: “No, seriously, I’m trying to help.”
from Dave Strader at PhoenixCoyotes.com,
This past Saturday night was a special one at Jobing.com Arena. The defending Stanley Cup champion Detroit Red Wings were in town, a vocal crowd of 16,000+ was on hand (thanks in part to some loyal Red Wings fans) and the two teams put on an entertaining show.
But for me, it was also special because I had the opportunity to spend some time with my first TV partner in the NHL, Mickey Redmond….
The first season we worked together was 1985-86 and the Wings weren’t projected to be a very good team. We only televised 15 games that year (thank goodness!). The Wings were 1-13-1 in those contests and the average score was 8-3 for the opposition. Moments before my very first telecast in the NHL in Minnesota, Mick told me to take off my headset and stop staring at the rosters that I was trying to memorize. He said that we had to be prepared for the worst.
NEW YORK/TORONTO (December 13, 2008)—The National Hockey League Players’ Association and the National Hockey League announced today that Brian McGrattan of the Phoenix Coyotes has voluntarily entered Stage #1 of the Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health Program of the NHL and the NHLPA.
Under terms of the program, McGrattan will continue to receive his full salary and benefits and will have no penalty imposed as long as he complies with the prescribed treatment and follow-up care program.
The program’s doctors, Dr. Dave Lewis on behalf of the NHL and Dr. Brian Shaw on behalf of the NHLPA, are administering McGrattan’s care.
from Craig Harris of the Arizona Republic,
Phoenix Coyotes Chief Executive Jeff Shumway shot down a report this week that claimed the financially strapped desert dogs were facing a handful of doom-and-gloom options that include filing for bankruptcy.
A story in Toronto’s Globe and Mail said the Coyotes were expected to lose up to $35 million this season and owner Jerry Moyes may be forced to renegotiate the team’s lease at Jobing.com Arena with Glendale, file for bankruptcy protection or give the team to the National Hockey League.
Shumway said Moyes, who also owns trucking company Swift Transportation, has no intention of giving up the team, filing for bankruptcy or giving the Coyotes to the NHL.
from Dan Bickley of the Arizona Republic,
The other night, the Chicago Blackhawks scored so many goals against the visiting Coyotes that the horn at the United Center ceased to function.
No embarrassment is too great for our hockey team, and these days the story seems to be a growing dire.
Would you miss them if they were gone?
Just as the Coyotes begin to turn a competitive corner, we are inundated with reports of their impending financial doom. Owner Jerry Moyes has lost a king’s fortune since investing in this team; Forbes magazine ranked the Coyotes the least-valuable franchise in the NHL, and one of 10 sports teams most likely to relocate; and a Toronto newspaper quotes a former governor of the league saying he wouldn’t buy the Coyotes for $1.
The Chicago Blackhawks are awaiting word from the NHL on whether rookie forward Kris Versteeg will be suspended for one game and head coach Joel Quenneville fined $10,000 for Versteeg being assessed an instigator penalty in the final seconds of last night’s 7-1 win over Phoenix.
NHL rules call for an automatic one-game suspension for the player and a $10,000 fine to his coach for any player who instigates a fight in the final five minutes of a game, but the league reviews each one case-by-case and, in some instances, rescinds the suspension and fine.
Update 3:52pm ET: From TSN, Versteeg suspended one game and Quenneville fined $10,000.
Here’s the video clip, via HockeyFights.com:
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
The Phoenix Coyotes are expected to lose between $25- and $35-million (all currency U.S.) this year and with his primary business under financial duress, owner Jerry Moyes may not be able to cover the hockey team’s losses any longer.
That leaves him three choices:
- Renegotiate the Coyotes’ arena lease to effectively put the city of Glendale into the position covering some of the losses;
- Put the franchise into bankruptcy;
- Turn the keys over to the NHL, forcing commissioner Gary Bettman to find a new owner.
from Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star,
Gretzky acknowledged that selling hockey in sunshine states – a “challenge” at the best of times – is even more difficult with the sudden, sharp recession that has struck North America.
“Since I came to the United States in 1988, this is as bad economic times as I’ve ever seen,” said Gretzky, whose team faces the Leafs here tonight. “It’s affecting everybody. A lot of people are unemployed. It’s not a good time.”...
“It only makes economic sense that teams can’t continue to lose money so they have to look for other options,” said Gretzky. “Could another team in Toronto survive? Sure. You could probably put two more teams there. We all know that. But that’s a decision the commissioner’s office and players’ association have to make.”
But Gretzky and Coyotes president Douglas Moss believe the Coyotes can weather this economic storm, which in Arizona hit the housing market first and hardest.
from Russell Brooks of PhoenixCoyotes.com,
The Coyotes put about 15 months of thought and hard work into their new third jersey, which they debuted on Nov. 28 against the Colorado Avalanche.
The process for creating the new black sweaters started in August of 2007 when the team approached SME Branding about an idea for a third jersey.
“We were looking for an alternate jersey that complemented our home and road jerseys, but that was unique and something the fans would like,” Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Michael Bucek said. “We hope our fans take as much pride in this jersey as our organization does.”
continued with a slide show of numerous prototype sweaters like the one below.
from Jim Gintonio of Ice Chips at the Arizona Republic,
Ilya Bryzgalov says he is frustrated because he has been letting down his teammates.
The Coyotes goaltender, who helped inspire a playoff bid a season ago, has lost his last six starts, and Saturday night allowed two goals on the first two shots he faced. He was pulled from the game by coach Wayne Gretzky about five minutes into the contest against the San Jose Sharks and replaced by Mikael Tellqvist.
“You just work harder, and it’s gonna get better,” Bryzgalov said. “’I’m not mad, but I’m frustrated because I was brutal. I was terrible, and I have to pick up my game, and I’ve got to be better for the guys because they deserve much better goaltending from me than I did in the last game … Two shots, two goals is just horrific.”
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.
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