Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Vancouver Province,
The return of Morrison's familiar strong stride following May 9 surgery in Vail, Colo., to repair a torn labrum muscle in his left hip has the Pitt Meadows cautiously optimistic. "It's only the third time I've skated and it's gotten better every day," Morrison said following the one-hour session. "I'm still tight pivoting and with a quick change of pace or direction. But as far as skating straight and keeping my momentum going, I feel pretty good. I'm happy where it's at, but I still have a little ways to go. But I'm not labouring, limping or favouring it, so it's definitely progressing." There are several theories why hip-flexor injuries have become the latest ailment affecting many players. From sharper blades and softer ice, to a crackdown on obstruction requiring quicker strides to training methods, there's lots of head scratching going on in the NHL.read on
from E.J Hradek of ESPN,
According to a league source, University of Minnesota forward Phil Kessel has decided to forego the final three years of his college eligibility and sign a three-year contract with the Boston Bruins. The club likely will make the formal announcement on Thursday. Kessel will earn the entry-level max $850,000 in annual salary for the duration of the contract. He'll also be eligible for significant performance-based bonuses. For example, rookie stars Alex Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby earned approximately $3 million in bonuses during the 2005-06 season.added 7:07am, from the Boston Globe, Yesterday, Phil Kessel's college coach cautioned that the Bruins had not signed their first-round pick yet. But University of Minnesota coach Don Lucia sounded like a man nearly certain that Kessel, who would be a sophomore in 2006-07, will be going pro. "Who knows, it could all fall apart in the next 24 to 48 hours," said Lucia, who has informed recruit Jay Barriball, originally slated to join the Golden Gophers in 2007-08, that he could take Kessel's spot this season. "But I'd be surprised. Right now we're preparing for life after Phil. If he ends up back in college right now, I'd be very surprised."
from the Anaheim Ducks,
The Anaheim Ducks announced today that the National Hockey League (NHL) club has signed defenseman Francois Beauchemin to a two-year contract extension. Beauchemin is now under contract through the 2008-2009 season. Per club policy, no financial terms of the deal were disclosed. "We are very pleased to have three of our key defensemen under contract for the next three years," said Anaheim Ducks Executive Vice President/General Manager Brian Burke. "Francois has brought character and skill to our hockey club and we are happy to have him signed long-term."
from Fox Sports,
Teemu Selanne was one of the first. Now many NHL veterans are trying it. From Dominik Hasek to Shane Willis, players are signing contracts with (or in some cases being traded to) clubs they have previously played with. Which begs the question ... can you really go home again?continued
NHL Local TV Scheds Shaping Up.Hey everyone, I'm Steve, the new blogger here at KK. I'm very excited to be sharing all the news, notes and nuggets I can find around the league. I'm also a diehard Devils fan, which gives me an upper hand on Paul ('Till the next time they meet in the Finals). My main beat is the TV/Media aspect of hockey, and this is what my first posting has to do with. As the national TV schedule was released last week, teams now are starting to adjust a start time here or there and begin announcing where the local folks can watch their team when they aren't playing on Versus or NBC. Here are some notes from those recent announcements: -The Pittsburgh Penguins will have all 82 of their games on TV. FSN Pittsburgh will air 71 games, while the 11 others will be on national TV. FSN will also travel to Halifax and Moncton for two preseason games and air a documentary on Sidney Crosby's homecoming. Paul Steigerwald and Mike Lange flip flop jobs, as Steigerwald is the new TV voice, and Lange will get that dog off his lawn on the radio now. -The Pens' Pennsylvania rivals will also be on the idiot box all 82 games. Comcast Sportsnet will air 61 games, The CW affiliate in Philly will air 10, and the rest will be on the networks. -The Dallas Stars also give you the maximum in the Metroplex. 39 games will air on FSN Southwest, while 35 will air on MyNetwork TV 27 (Basically what used to be a UPN affiliate for those not in the know). Ralph Strangis and Daryl Reaugh return to the mic. -The Avalanche will also have all games on the tube. Colorado network Altitude will air 72 games and air an "Inside the Avs" type magazine show every week. They'll also air a season preview. Mike Haynes and Peter McNab return to the booth. -The Blue Jackets will show 81 games in their market next season. For the first time, they'll get national recognition, with 6 games combined on Versus and NBC. Plus, FSN Ohio will air 75 games. Buffalo Sabre great Danny Gare joins veteran Jeff Rimer in th booth. -The Phoenix Coyotes will have 66 games on television this season. 40 will be aired by FSN Arizona, 25 by a local station in the desert, and one on Versus. Curt Keilback will call his 27th season with the franchise (Most of them in Winnipeg) and Darren Pang will also return to Phoenix. -The Stanley Cup Champion Hurricanes will have 55 games aired on FSN south, with 6 games combined on Versus and NBC. John Forslund and Tripp Tracy return. -Dan Kelly and Eddie Olczyk have been named the new team of the Chicago Blackhawks on Comcast Sportsnet. Which I must say is a terrific job, because you get to call hockey AND you get a lot of free time. More will be announced in the coming weeks, including additions to Versus' commentating team.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
After a brief stop for lunch, Staal and his entourage roll into the Thunder Bay Christian Academy, a private Christian school Staal attended through his elementary school years. The parking lot is soon filled and a line of 200 or so snakes along the building where Staal played as a youngster. Staal, the model of patience and politeness, signs everything from coffee mugs to shirts to pictures.much more...must read for the hockey fan...
from the San Francisco Chronicle,
But has any apparel trend lasted as long or made as many American men look more heinous than the replica jersey? Once it was a piece of clothing that was limited to professional athletes and a handful of insanely dedicated fans who wore them on game day. Now the jersey of a single NBA or NFL player can generate more than $10 million a year in sales. And yet as great as a sports jersey can look on sinewy, young and attractive athletes, it can look atrocious on balding, out-of-shape older men -- who seem with an increasing frequency to be the core demographic. Go to a heavily populated pick-up basketball court, and you'll almost never see an NBA jersey. Go to a McDonald's in Hayward, and you'll see at least three.more...and take the test...
from the Globe and Mail,
Evgeny Malkin isn't the only Russian eager to join the National Hockey League, despite having a signed contract with a Russian Super League team for the coming season. Forwards Alexei Mikhnov and Andrei Taratukhin have each given 14 days notice to Yaroslavl Lokomotiv saying they will not play in Russia. Instead, Mikhnov is close to signing with the Edmonton Oilers while Taratukhin is expected to sign with the Calgary Flames.continued added 6:44am, from the Toronto Star,
"Is it not clear that Evgeni left for America at the invitation of the people overseas?" Gennady Velichkin, head of Malkin's Superleague team, told Soviet Sport. "The Americans' arrogance is beyond bounds. This is the theft of the century. They don't care that Malkin is Russia's national treasure." "We must sue not only Pittsburgh but the entire National Hockey League and its whole arrogance. The NHL must receive a total condemnation from the entire sporting world. Let's get back to the question of the compensation. ... Money is not most important for us. The most important (aspect) for us is to get a precedent and win the case."more added 6:55am, from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar said that looking back on his conversation with Evgeni Malkin just over a week ago, the young Russian phenom sounded upset. Which struck Gonchar as interesting, given that Malkin was calling to tell him he'd signed a new contract with his Russian team and was putting off coming to the NHL for one more year. "He was very, very disappointed that he signed it," Gonchar said from his home in Russia on Tuesday. "He was very upset." Now, Gonchar knows why.continued added 8:42am, see the comments for some information from Dave King...
from the People's Daily,
There are only three professional ice hockey teams, in Harbin, Qiqihar and Jiamusi, and lack of financial investment has forced Chinese hockey players to play low-level competitions. This has caused Chinese ice hockey lag behind Asian rivals Japan and South Korea, not to mention traditional powerhouses such as Canada and USA. But this may change and Chinese ice hockey stars could be playing in the National Hockey League (NHL) under a bold new rescue plan. In a bid to boost the grass-roots levels of the sport, China Winter Sports Administration Centre officials and Charles Wang, owner of the New York Islanders of the NHL signed a deal called China Ice Hockey Project Hope in Beijing this week.more
from the Dallas Stars,
Most people aren't aware that there was an American team of amputee hockey players that went overseas to compete against other national teams, but with a Metroplex representative on the squad, it did attract some local interest. Aged 14, Flower Mound's Kevin Qualls was the youngest member of Team USA at the International Standing Ice Hockey Federation (ISIHF) World Championships in Riga, Latvia in late May. Team USA went 4-2 during the tournament, defeating teams from Latvia, Russia, Finland and the Czech Republic before falling to Canada in the Gold Medal game by a 4-2 margin. Qualls, whose right arm stops a few inches past his elbow, was one of the few players on the team that does not wear a prosthesis. He has used one at times in the past, but is most comfortable without one and doesn't wear one to play. "It's harder to use the prosthesis," Kevin said. "With my arm, I can control whatever it does. (With the prosthesis), it's harder to pick up stuff and it only moves three fingers."read on
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org