Kukla's Korner Hockey
fromm Shawn P. Roarke at NHL.com,
Daniel Briere was handed his new No. 48 Philadelphia Flyers jersey late in Thursday’s press conference at the Flyers Skate Zone practice facility here. Smiling proudly, he held it up for the obligatory welcome-to-your-new-team press-conference photo.
“Finally,” he said with a heartfelt sigh before pulling it over his head for the first time to officially begin life as the centerpiece of the Philadelphia Flyers’ latest renaissance.
Briere, one of the most coveted prizes in this summer’s free-agency class, signed a big-money, eight-year deal with the Flyers just hours after the free-agent market opened 11 days ago. Since agreeing to that deal, he has been waiting eagerly to pull on his new franchise’s cherished black-and-orange sweater.
fromm the Pittsburgh Penguins,
The Pittsburgh Penguins have re-signed forward Colby Armstrong to a two-year contract, it was announced Thursday by Executive Vice President and General Manager Ray Shero.
“Colby is another young guy who plays with passion, gives us versatility up front and brings an added physical dimension to our team,” Shero said. “We are confident he’ll continue to grow as a player and benefit from experiences like having played for Team Canada at the World Championships.”
from Al Strachan at Fox Sports,
If there is any doubt about the one-sided nature of this “partnership,” consider the recent statement by Ducks GM Brian Burke. Speaking to Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal, Burke insisted that the recent spate of big contracts didn’t mean that the owners had returned to their pre-lockout ways.
“We’re not back to where we were before the lockout because there is a cap and there’s a 20 percent cap on individual players you sign,” said Burke. “And if the money for players can’t be sustained by the industry, we’ll all get a rebate.”
Translation: First of all, we’ve put a limit on what we can pay any single “partner.” But even if we screw up and pay too much, the escrow amount will rise and the players, not the owners, get the bill.
That’s the NHL partnership. The owners spend. The players pay.
from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
So, here are 20 random things that have been on my mind over the last little while. Feel free to submit any or all of them to your local shrink for further discussion and analysis. I know I have.
- Jeremy Jacobs as the new Chairman of the NHL’s Board Of Governors still boggles my mind, and I’ve got a couple analogies I’d just can’t let fade away: Electing Jeremy Jacobs as the Chairman of the NHL’s Board of Governors is like The Rock And Roll Hall of Fame appointing Pat Boone head of the voting committee. Electing Jeremy Jacobs as the Chairman of the NHL’s Board of Governors is like Maxim Magazine naming Lou Lamoriello Editor-In-Chief. There, I feel better.
read on for more thoughts, most are hockey related…
from Brad Polik at MSG Network,
For Pete’s sake, If you do a GOOGLE search for ‘England’ and ‘hockey’ you get all these sites about field hockey. It takes some heavy research to find any valuable information about Great Britain and “ice hockey.”
Not only is having the game in England a bad idea, but California hockey fans are going to have to get up at 9:00 a.m. to watch the game. It’s tough enough to get people from Cali to watch hockey, now you’re going to tell them to catch the season opener at the breakfast table.
What a bad idea.
I must disagree. When the announcement came out about these games, I received hundreds of emails from fans all across Europe, asking for ticket details.
These games will draw the NHL Euro fans who don’t get the opportunity to actually see a game in person. I am looking forward to seeing the multiple national flags waving in the crowd and expect it to be quite an event.
from a Pittsburgh Tribune-Review editorial,
As money is fungible, it is no stretch to say Mr. Crosby’s financial fortune is partly guaranteed by taxpayers. They’ll receive less property-tax “relief” so the teenage hockey phenom can be magnificently paid….
So, sure, we’ll join the chorus and praise the young star for being a team player. He appears to be mature beyond his years for taking less money now in hopes of keeping the nucleus of a hot team together and on the road to another Stanley Cup.
But none of this would be possible without taxpayers. And that remains a sad commentary considering Greater Pittsburgh’s far more pressing needs.
from the Philly News,
Neither coach John Stevens nor general manager Paul Holmgren gives much of a hint to what they are thinking, but each concedes that Smith will be given significant consideration.
“He’s certainly going to get some consideration and there are a lot of scenarios that we’ve already discussed. We’ll come up with the guy that we all feel comfortable with,” Steven said yesterday.
For Smith, the 33-year-old veteran who was traded to the Flyers with Joffrey Lupul for Joni Pitkanen and Geoff Sanderson, the “C” is not something on his mind as much as making a significant impact as a player.
“I just want to go out and play,” Smith said yesterday after he was formally introduced to the media and handed his game jersey by Holmgren. “It’s a new start and a new challenge and I’m looking forward to what’s coming.”
from the Washington Post,
Hanlon said that Backstrom’s comprehension of team meetings conducted in English is better than Ovechkin’s was in his rookie season.
“He understands. He’s way more advanced. In Sweden, there’s a lot more English spoken, a lot more English TV channels and they all seem to watch MTV.
“With him, it’s more getting used to our training, getting used to some of our systems,” he continued. “We’ll spend more time showing him our system play than we would some of the others.”
read on (reg. req.)
from the Phiily News,
While there are a number of years separating the playing careers of Joe Watson and Derian Hatcher, they mirror each other’s thoughts on many issues. That might be because Hatcher is also an old-timer, heading to his 16th NHL camp in September. They talked about everything from the effects of concussions to the current state of their game…
Hatcher: I can go back 15 years ago and I would say that there’s definitely . . . players in the league with less heart. I don’t know why. I don’t think that, you know, when I came in, it was really never an issue. The players were there because they wanted it. It’s weird, and money probably does come into it. Something does, because I see players throughout the league who sometimes look like they don’t even want to be on the ice.
more, entertaining feature…
from the Star-Ledger,
Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello returned from his trip to Minnesota, where he laid the groundwork to sign restricted free agents Zach Parise and Paul Martin.
“I met with Mr. Lamoriello and we had lengthy discussions,” said Parise’s representative, Neil Sheehy. “Multiyear is something we discussed. We talked about all the different possibilities and we’re still in discussion.”
Parise, who earned $703,000 in 2006-07, is in position to command a deal in the neighborhood of $4 million per season. A four-year, $16 million contract would seemingly suit both sides.
Martin, who made $2 million last season, figures to at least double his salary.
That would seemingly prevent Lamoriello from signing a big-ticket free agent such as Sheldon Souray or center Alexei Yashin. Souray might be headed for San Jose while Yashin has several lucrative offers to play in Russia.
more on the Devils…
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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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