Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet,
- One exec, watching to see what Chicago does, on Stan Bowman: “Just like Scotty, he believes you’d rather trade a player a year early than a year late.”
- Boy, that Stars’ power play. It had some sensational moments Monday against Florida. There were times we saw three right-hand shots on the left (Ales Hemsky, Tyler Seguin, Jason Spezza) and two left-hand shots on the weakside (Jamie Benn, Trevor Daley). Seguin scored once on a one-timer from the middle of the ice and a second when he went backdoor as Benn moved higher in the slot, taking the defence with him. Benn barely missed another after a ridiculous pass from Spezza to the crease. Coaches say you have to decide which two things you want to take away from your opponent’s powerplay. Good luck with that.
- One scout on Stephen Weiss: “The biggest question will be his stamina. He’s played 43 games in two years. I’ve seen him start strong and slow down in later periods. Can he get up to speed?”
from John Kreiser of NHL.com,
Who will replace Jarome Iginla's 30 goals? -- Iginla was a perfect fit in his one season with the Bruins, tying Patrice Bergeron for the team lead in goals. Ironically, his success wound up triggering his departure; Iginla earned more than $3 million in bonuses that cut down on the space available under this season's salary cap. He wound up in Colorado, and general manager Peter Chiarelli had to do a lot of juggling to get Boston under the cap. Loui Eriksson, who averaged more than 29 goals in his last four full seasons with the Dallas Stars but struggled in his first season with Boston, could get the first chance to take Iginla's spot with David Krejci and Milan Lucic.
Where do they go from here? -- The Sabres brought back Matt Moulson, and added Brian Gionta and Josh Gorges, but any future success rests with their core of talented young players and the slew of high picks they'll have in the next two drafts. However, after finishing a distant last in the overall standings in 2013-14 and scoring fewer goals than any team since the mid-1950s, the Sabres have a long way to go. The Sabres hope top draft pick Sam Reinhart can make the jump to the NHL and young players like Mikhail Grigorenko and Zemgus Girgensons are ready to become impact players. There's nowhere to go but up, and though the Sabres figure to be improved, they're still likely to be a lottery team.
This certainly sucks for Edmonton. From TSN:
Vladimir Tkachev's entry level contract signed with the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday has been ruled ineligible by the National Hockey League.
According to NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly, Tkachev wasn't qualified to sign a contract as he is still eligible for June's NHL Entry Draft.
Players who go undrafted are eligible to sign only if they played a full year in North America. While waiting for his transfer, Tkachev played two games with Omsk of the Kontinental Hockey League and spent the remainder of the season with the Moncton Wildcats of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
Tkachev will go back into the draft after this season.
The 18-year-old appeared in three preseason games with the Oilers, posting three assists and a plus three rating.
Update: The Score's Thomas Drance has more on the situation:
from Scott Stinson of the National Post,
This is the curious thing about “the new home of hockey,” as Scott Moore, president of Sportsnet and NHL Properties, described it: It’s a lot like the old home. The CBC’s influence is everywhere, including a production staff of about 20 that will work on Rogers-produced hockey broadcasts. There are even red armchairs for Strombo. All of this familiarity is by design. And it speaks to a broadcaster in Rogers that spent an extraordinary amount of money on NHL rights — the $4.5-million invested in the new studio is 0.086% of what it paid to lock up Canadian broadcasts for a dozen years — and is very aware that its audience might not care for a great deal of change.
“We’re not going to do a glowing puck,” as Moore told me in an interview, standing on a studio floor that can light up like a video wall, allowing analysts to demonstrate tactics on the virtual ice. Some degree of continuity for Hockey Night viewers, he says, was always part of the plan.
“I’d like to think we’ve kept that in the back of our heads from day one,” Moore says. “From the first discussions with the NHL, we talked about how could we keep the Saturday night tradition? How could we keep the CBC involved?”
“I think you’ll see us advance storytelling, advance the technology, but not wipe the board clean of what’s been done in the past.”
from Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
The injury keeping Evgeni Malkin out this preseason is one the franchise center suffered in the United States — not Russia — according to Penguins coach Mike Johnston.
And with four scheduled practices left before the Penguins' first regular-season game Oct. 9, Malkin doesn't have a lot of time left to prepare....
On Thursday, Sept. 18, the day before the first camp practice, Johnston said he expected Malkin's absence from an undisclosed injury to be “fairly short.”
Johnston said a week later that no additional tests or evaluation had been required; they're simply “waiting it out.”
On Friday, Johnston amended the original timetable, setting it another four to five days.
It has now been five days since that point, and Malkin is showing no signs of a return.
read on plus more on the Penguins...
from Dan Rosen of NHL.com,
The Columbus Blue Jackets resumed negotiations with restricted free agent center Ryan Johansen on Monday and they were "very polite, well mannered," Blue Jackets president of hockey operations John Davidson said Tuesday after the NHL Board of Governors meeting.
Davidson said negotiations were expected to resume Tuesday between the Blue Jackets and Johansen's agent, Kurt Overhardt, but Davidson did not have an update because he was in meetings here. Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekelainen and assistant general manager Bill Zito were handling the negotiations from Columbus' side....
Asked Tuesday if the organization favors a shorter term deal at this point, Davidson said, "A deal would interest us.
The NHL Board of Governors has approved the sale of the Islanders from Charles Wang to Jonathan Ledecky and Scott Malkin, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman announced Tuesday.
The deal, which Bettman said has not been finalized, calls for Ledecky and Malkin to own a minority stake in the team once the deal is complete. They will assume majority control of the team in two years, with Wang remaining a minority owner.
Bettman told reporters the deal "provides an orderly transition, which was important to Charles."
NEW YORK (Sept. 30, 2014) -- The National Hockey League’s Board of Governors today unanimously approved the purchase of a minority stake in the New York Islanders by Scott Malkin and Jonathan Ledecky. The purchase remains subject to completion of documentation and further League review before the transaction can be closed.
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
There has been no progress whatsoever in the contract extension talks between the Rangers and Marc Staal, The Post has learned from several informed sources.
And that essentially is because there have been no meaningful talks for weeks between management and the 27-year-old defenseman’s camp.
The Rangers are believed to be offering Staal, who can become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, the same six-year, $33 million deal ($5.5M per) to which they signed Dan Girardi last year when he was a pending free agent. They don’t appear inclined to move off that number.
Staal, two years younger than Girardi, is believed seeking at least $6 million per on a six- or seven-year deal, which he certainly would be able to get on the open market if he remains healthy throughout the season.
from Daryl Reaugh of Razor With an Edge,
Coaching seems to be more interested in schemes for possessing the puck, and making plays of skill with it, than they are dumping and chasing, crashing and banging, pinging and ponging.
Players are the most media-savvy ever to enter the NHL.
The sport feels ‘modern’.
Hockey appears to be pretty good at social media.
Other leagues are copying NHL initiatives (video replay, speed of play, rule changes to protect players).
Goaltending: Still very important, and excellent, but despite being the most coached position in sports, it is no longer dominating the sport at the level it once was. (Chicks dig offense)
TV deals in Canada and the US are guaranteeing major exposure.
Craig Custance of ESPN with a chat today...
Craig, what do you see the Caps doing with Mike Green? Trotz says he wants him around, but he's in the last year of his deal, makes too much money, and the Caps need a #2 center. Is there a deal out there that you could see them making?
Craig Custance Yeah, I still wouldn't rule out a Mike Green trade. But the Capitals are in a good spot, they don't need to deal him. They can wait for another team to get desperate and come calling. Also, keep in mind, everyone thought the Penguins were going to trade Matt Niskanen at this point last year and then they got crushed with injuries and he rescued the defense. If Washington starts getting banged up defensively, Green isn't going anywhere.
With the addition of Spezza centering a solid 2nd line and if Nichushkin makes a big jump in his 2nd season how dominant can the top line of Seguin, Benn, and Nichushkin be? Top 2 or 3 in NHL?
Craig Custance I love that line. I wish I liked Dallas' defense better. Spezza and Hemsky now gives opposing teams something to think about. The Seguin line always saw the best d-men last year. If Nichushkin makes a jump in year two, that's definitely a top three line.
Which teams in the East and the West do you see as having a closing window in the next two - three years? I have delusions as a Sabres fan of seeing the playoffs again, as does a buddy of mine who's a Flames fan. Yes, we're heavy drinkers.
Craig Custance Haha, Bill. Lay off the sauce, Sabres aren't making the playoffs. The Sabres are much better off being a lottery team this year. I think Boston's window is closing for the simple reason that Chara is on the back end of his career. He's such an important piece that if his game declines, they are less imposing. Out West, it's the Marleau/Thornton Sharks. I'm starting to think they take one more kick at it this year with a big year but after that it closes. I think Vancouver and the Sedins may have another good year left too.
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