Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the St. Petersburg Times,
With the Lightning carrying three goaltenders on its roster, and the league’s holiday roster freeze having expired Thursday at midnight, something has to budge. Marc Denis, a healthy scratch for the fourth straight game Thursday, would be the most likely one to be placed on waivers, and that could happen as early as today.
more on Tampa Bay…
added 1:01pm, Denis has been placed on waivers.
from Crain’s Detroit,
Auburn Hills-based Palace Sports & Entertainment has set a deadline of the third week of January for a Hollywood producer to arrange financing to buy the Tampa Bay Lightning of the National Hockey League.
Oren Koules, the Los Angeles-based producer of the CBS comedy “Two and A Half Men” and the “Saw” horror films, has emerged as the front man for what’s estimated to be a $206 million bid for the team operated by Palace Sports. According to published reports, he’s being joined by movie producer Mark Burg and California financier Russell Belinsky in the effort.
If Koules’ group arranges the financing, the deal should be done in February, said Tom Wilson, president of Palace Sports.
via Lightning Strikes,
An update on center Craig MacDonald, who had to leave Thursday’s game after being hit in the mouth with a wrist shot from Maple Leafs defenseman Hal Gill.
The team said on Friday MacDonald lost nine teeth, five cleanly while four were shaved in half. He received numerous stitches to his tongue and the inside of his lower lip, and a few more on his chin.
As if that weren’t enough, Friday morning he needed three root canals.
Amazing that given all that damage he skated himself off the ice. He’s a hockey player.
from the Tampa Bay Lightning,
The Tampa Bay Lightning have recalled goaltender Karri Ramo and defenseman Jay Leach from the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League, Executive Vice President and General Manager Jay Feaster announced. Leach has been recalled on an emergency basis.
continued... You know Tampa cannot be happy with the current goaltending situation…
Tampa Bay Lightning vs Atlanta Thrashers—7pm ET
The Lightning’s Vincent Lecavalier, who leads the NHL with 51 points this season, and the Thrashers’ Ilya Kovalchuk, who leads the league with 26 goals, will go head-to-head for the fifth time this season and the 35th time in their careers when the Lightning play the Thrashers tonight in Atlanta.
Lecavalier has scored 39 points (17-22—39) and Kovalchuk 36 (20-16—36) in their 34 previous meetings, with Tampa Bay and Lecavalier winning 18 times, Kovalchuk and Atlanta 14 times, and two games ending in a tie. They’ve met four times already this season with each player winning twice; Lecavalier (3-6—9) has more points but Kovalchuk (5-2—7) has more goals.
from Damien Cox at ESPN,
It’s a classic example of how enamored NHL clubs can be of teenage players one moment, and how anxious they can be to dump the same players soon after.
And how there’s absolutely no guarantee that young players pressed into NHL service before their 20th birthdays are so talented that they’ll turn into stars like Sidney Crosby, or so hastily promoted that they’ll end up enormous busts like Alexandre Daigle.
The truth is, it usually takes years for either scenario to play out.
Both Vincent Lecavalier and Nik Antropov, you may recall, were drafted into the NHL the same year (1998), one a Quebec-born Canadian and the other a prodigy from the former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan.
from the St. Petersburg Times,
If nothing else, the attempt being made by Hollywood producer Oren Koules to buy the Lightning put on hold any decision owner Palace Sports & Entertainment could make about cutting payroll.
That means any discussions about trading Vinny Lecavalier, Marty St. Louis, Brad Richards or Dan Boyle are, for now anyway, off the table
from Mike Brophy of the Hockey News,
And with each passing day it becomes more evident GM Jay Feaster is going to have to trade one of the Big Three…
All three are decorated. St-Louis led the NHL in scoring and was named most valuable player in 2004; Richards won the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP the same season and, a few months later, Lecavalier was the MVP of the World Cup. He won the Rocket Richard Trophy for leading the NHL in goals last season.
Making the prospect of a deal more complicated is the fact that of the three, only Lecavalier does not have a no-trade clause in his contract. For Feaster to trade Richards or St-Louis, he would need their permission.
Richards might be inclined to move to a team where he can play on the top line, but it’s hard to imagine St-Louis wanting to leave Lecavalier’s side – unless, of course, his new team was interested in signing him to a contract extension.
from Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette,
And as much fun as it may be to speculate about trades that would bring Vincent Lecavalier to Montreal, the simple truth is that Lecavalier doesn’t want to play here. Pity, because he is a fair modern imitation of Jean Béliveau. The goal he scored on a knuckler last night was his 20th of the season to go with 26 assists.
Forget that fellow Sidney What’s-his-name: If we’re choosing sides for a little shinny, Vinny is our first pick. Any game that includes Lecavalier, Brad Richards and Martin St. Louis should have more sizzle than last night’s rather humdrum affair.
more on the Canadiens…
From Bob McKenzie at TSN,
There is still much work to be done, but it looks as though the sale of the Tampa Bay Lightning is on its way to being resurrected.
Sources say NHL commissioner Gary Bettman yesterday mediated a resolution of the dispute, and lawsuit, between proposed partners Jeff Sherrin and Oren Koules, who hand intended to work together to purchase the Lightning franchise from the Detroit-based Palace Sports and Entertainment.
The net result is apparently that Sherrin and Koules have reached a settlement on their issues, the lawsuit has been avoided, and Hollywood producer Koules, of Saw (I,II,III and IV) fame, now has the green light to resume negotiations with the Lightning’s existing ownership. Koules is a former minor league hockey player.
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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