Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the LA Times,
Much like Scott Niedermayer is wrestling with thoughts of retirement, so too is Selanne.
“The decision is way harder than I thought,” he told a small group of reporters at Anaheim Ice on Friday. “I thought it was going to be an easy decision and just move on. Obviously, everything has just been unbelievable here. When you have played something since you were 6 years old. . . . Now I know how players say how hard it is to retire….
I’m guessing I’m going to see how I feel when the season starts and I’m watching the games,” he said. “By then, I’ll know for sure whether I want to go back and play again. But right now, I feel at this point, there’s no way I can be as motivated” as needed.
“If I don’t feel the same way the next month or so, then it’s time to do something. It’s unbelievable, [this] decision. But it has to be right.”
read on (reg. req.)...and Selanne says he will only play for the Ducks.
from Spector at Fox Sports,
With NHL training camps now opening here are ten story lines worth watching:
On the rebound
Several NHL stars struggled last season through injuries and/or inconsistency will be looking toward a strong camp to get off to a strong start to the 2007-08 campaign.
Those hoping to get their mojo back include Tampa Bay center Brad Richards, New Jersey winger Patrik Elias, San Jose winger Jonathan Cheechoo, Carolina center Eric Staal and goalie Cam Ward, Columbus forward Rick Nash, Ottawa blueliner Wade Redden and former Oiler turned Philadelphia Flyers forward Joffrey Lupul.
read on for more storylines…
from The Walrus,
The new names were a risk, but here in week four of the season, they seem to have caught on. “Life is rough,” Dirsh pointed out to the team owners. “And that is why hockey is the game of life, or would be if baseball weren’t. People are afraid of life. They should be afraid of hockey.”...
Bettman himself watched the historic matchup between the New York Lack of Affordable Housing and the New York Unsolved Murders, which had everyone going home happy (those who had homes and weren’t killed en route, at least).
There have been disappointments of course. Any Montreal fan can tell you that. The Referendums have played to less than stellar crowds so far. Meanwhile, the Toronto Closet Homosexuals aren’t having an easy time of it either, and are leading the league in penalty minutes with 120,000 after only nine games.
from Fire & Ice,
New head coach Brent Sutter announced this morning that Patrik Elias might not be the captain again this season, Sutter did not rule out picking Elias to wear the C again, but said he would go through “a process” with his assistant coaches and general manager Lou Lamoriello to select the captain and the alternates.
thanks to a KK member for the pointer…
from On the Forecheck,
Thanks to JavaGeek over at Hockey Numbers for pointing out that the NHL is using a new format for its game report files, starting with last night’s exhibition game between the Anaheim Ducks and Los Angeles Kings. For hockey stats analysts, this is a bit like Christmas in September; there are some welcome additions to the detailed information presented online after each game, although it will take some work to reconfigure how we pull that data down and bring it into a structured format.
from Bob McKenzie at his blog on TSN,
There have been a lot of rumors that the Florida Panthers are trading defenceman Noah Welch, who they recently signed to a new contract.
Based on the information I am a getting, there is no truth whatsoever to the rumors.
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Iginla thought: With the opening of training camp still eight days away, he’d organized a boy’s weekend out in nearby Banff – something coach Mike Keenan likened to a team-building exercise, but Iginla saw mostly as an excuse to get together with the newcomers in a social setting, away from the pressures of the rink and all the attendant scrutiny.
Some players went golfing, others went fishing. Mother Nature didn’t exactly cooperate, according to Alex Tanguay – the day was cold and wet and sometimes, the wet stuff looked suspiciously like snow or hail. But all in all, it served the purpose – to introduce Iginla, Tanguay and other holdover mainstays to the new players on the team, Owen Nolan, Adrian Aucoin, Cory Sarich and all the rest.
from John McGourty of NHL.com,
This was the 11th year that Centre ICE and Traverse City have hosted the event and the second year that seven other NHL teams competed here. There may be an event like this coming to you in the future. There were at least two teams here to study the rink operation as well as scout the roughly 160 players who, for the most part, were drafted in the past three years. Each team was limited to using only four professional hockey players, mostly those in the AHL and ECHL.
Teams that once turned down Red Wings General Manager Ken Holland’s invitations, call repeatedly to ask to be admitted.
“You snooze, you lose, I tell them, but we’re looking at expanding and including more teams, nothing definite yet,” Holland said. “It’s a good place to see how your young talent is progressing and how they shape up against their own age group.
Numminen believed the surgery would occur years down the line but doctors at The Cleveland Clinic advised the 39-year old defensemen have it done now.
“It was shocking,” said Numminen. “It was something that I wasn’t expecting and it really was surprising.”
Numminen, who has had two heart surgeries, will have a valve in his heart repaired on Thursday at The Cleveland Clinic.
The Sabres have suspended Numminen without pay for reporting to training camp physically unable to perform, something he is not thinking about.
“That’s I guess how the teams do their business, it’s not really on my list of worries or things to think about. It’s really on the side and not a big deal for me.”
from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution,
The Thrashers opened training camp Friday morning without center Steve Rucchin, who failed his physical on Thursday. Rucchin has been suffering from post-concussion syndrome since taking a hit to the head against the Colorado Avalanche on Feb. 8. He hasn’t played since.
“He feels pretty good, but when he gets to an exertion period of work, (the headaches) keep coming back,” said general manager Don Waddell.
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