Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jason Botchford of the Vancouver Province via Canada.com,
“If there’s tampering going on, ultimately there are no secrets in this world. We will get to the bottom of it,” Bettman vowed in May 2008.“And I’m no fan of tampering. And when it happens, it gets punished severely.
“A team that meddles with an individual under contract could face heavy fines and the loss of draft picks. And an individual who talks to a team while he’s still under contract would face fines and a possible suspension.”
Seventeen months later, severe punishment has been reduced to a gag order. “Heavy fines” and the “loss of draft picks” have turned into $25,000 US. And Bettman’s call to arms has become a call to prayer. Because we should all pray that the Leafs aren’t allowed to operate above the law because of their power, friends and influence.
Here’s the kicker, even if the Canucks think the decision is a farce, they are not allowed to express it, by NHL order.
NEW YORK (October 7, 2009)—Bill Daly, Deputy Commissioner of the National Hockey League, today released the following statement which will serve as the League’s only comment regarding its findings relative to purported tampering allegations as between the Vancouver Canucks and Toronto Maple Leafs’ organizations:
“I confirm the following:
“That Ron Wilson, Head Coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs, violated the provisions of NHL By-Law 15 relating to inappropriate public comments by speaking generally to his Club’s potential interest in negotiating with Daniel and Henrik Sedin prior to such time as those players’ existing contracts with Vancouver had expired. The League has imposed a fine on the Maple Leafs’ organization as a result;
via Aaron Portzline’s Twitter,
NHL’s Colin Campbell offers “no comment” on any possible discipline of VAN’s Darcy Hordichuk following hit on Jared Boll Monday.
added 4:16pm, from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
Did you see Darcy Hordichuk’s hit last night on Jared Boll? I did and I don’t like it.
from Ian MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun,
Do we have to take another dozen years of this? Does Roberto Luongo?
In the first home start since his 12-year contract extension, Roberto Luongo was beaten on four straight shots and hooked after 25 minutes and 51 seconds. His goals-against average this season is 4.55, his save percentage .820 and his record 0-3.
Other than that, nothing is fine.
The Canucks lost 5-3 Monday to the Columbus Blue Jackets and are getting worse defensively by the game. Makes you wonder how bad things might be after four or five games.
added 10:05am, from Ray Ferraro of TSN,
My guess with the Canucks is that they expected a smooth start, and when they fell behind in all three games games, disbelief crippled their effort. A kick in the tail like this can quickly shock the system and help a slightly complacent group get back to work. The key is not to panic and try to do your own job and not everyone elses.
more plus other NHL topics as Ray begins blogging at TSN…
“We had a good practice yesterday and guys were jumping again today. But from everything you read in the paper, we better be jumping because it seems like every time we come into this building there’s a crisis and we end up in the middle of the damned crisis.”
“I wish it was just a normal time, just a normal game but we seem to come in here always when they’re trying to right their ship.
“This is three times in a row we’ve done this and we don’t want to be the brunt of it again.”
-Columbus Coach Ken Hitchcock talking about facing the Canucks tonight. More by Gordon McIntyre at the White Towel.
from Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province,
It’s fine to pass around the praise, but Samuelsson made a smart play and he was acquired in free agency to contribute points and poise to the Canucks. Did he not take that from being in the Red Wings fold?
“That’s a good question,” said Samuelsson. “What did I take? I don’t know what I took, but it was a great atmosphere with a great structure and everybody knows what they are doing. What more can I say? They don’t expect anybody to sneak under the radar.
“If you’re not accountable, you’re not on the team. And that’s a good thing. It puts pressure on you, but if you can’t handle it, you shouldn’t be there anyway. They expect a lot.”
more on the Canucks…
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
Put it this way. When you look at the calibre of player who failed to crack the Canucks’ lineup this season, you know something out of the ordinary was going on.
Maybe that means those players weren’t good enough.
Or maybe it means the Canucks’ lineup was too good for them and that would speak volumes about this team.
“There’s a reason you have training camp and that’s to give everyone the opportunity to show what they can do,” said head coach Alain Vigneault. “Can veterans assume a bigger role? Can the kids play here?
“We were able to answer a lot of those questions.”
from Matthew Sekeres of the Globe and Mail,
Canucks general manager Mike Gillis said his franchise would again talk to the NHL about an incident involving a Maple Leafs executive making comments about Vancouver players.
“We’ll talk to [the league] about it and see what their position is but this, in my mind, is another example of the Toronto Maple Leafs trying to upset our team,” Gillis said from Calgary, where the Canucks begin their season with a game against the Flames.
Vancouver’s latest complaint stems from a video on the Maple Leafs website, entitled Behind the Draft, where general manager Brian Burke discusses the possibility of trading up into the top five slots.
“Vancouver has made a major effort to get the second pick out of Tampa Bay,” Burke tells his scouts at a pre-draft meeting. “We heard they offered - again, this is all second-hand, so we’re not sure - [Alex] Burrows, [Kevin] Bieksa and their own pick. Those are two pretty good players.”
“I saw Mats in Vegas at the awards and he told me wasn’t going to come back. He had a great career and I really enjoyed my time with him. I thought he was a great guy and, obviously, we saw glimpses of what he could do at times.”
-Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo. More on Sundin from Elliott Pap of the Vancouver Sun.
from Jason Botchford of The White Towel,
In a new special on Leafs TV called Behind the Draft 2009, Burke is essentially caught rumour mongering. In the documentary-styled, multi-chapter feature, which was filmed at June’s NHL Draft, the general manager, who has described members of the media as “maggots” and “scumbags,” makes an unsubstantiated, admittedly speculative claim, alleging the Canucks made a strong push for Victor Hedman. He is the Swedish defenceman who the Tampa Bay Lightning drafted second overall.
Burke is filmed in June at the beginning of the draft in the Leafs war room where he is seen addressing his scouting staff. “Vancouver has made a major effort to get the second pick out of Tampa Bay,” says Burke on Part 1 of the series which can be seen on the Leafs’ web site. “We heard they offered, again this is all second hand so we don’t know if it’s true. We heard they offered (Alex) Burrows, (Kevin) Bieksa and their own pick. Those are two pretty good players.”
He’s right. They are two pretty good players whose inclusion in the alleged deal make the rumour sound pretty outlandish.
It’s one thing for Burke to make the comment in his war room. That’s fair game. It’s another entirely to allow it to air.
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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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