Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
Chicago GM Dale Tallon is expected to make big changes this summer. Getting RW Martin Havlat from Ottawa wasn’t enough—the Blackhawks and the club needs to put some talent around him. While the Hawks are trying to keep C Michal Handzus from going to unrestricted free agency this summer, there’s also talk the club will be free-agent shopping. The Hawks could make a pitch for Buffalo C Daniel Briere and Islanders LW Ryan Smyth.
much more from Garrioch… and we all know most every team will have an interest in Smyth, Briere and Drury…
from the Daily Breeze,
Who else but a fan of the Kings could better demonstrate the need for faith?
But when the NHL team decided Saturday night it was the right time to stage its first “Faith and Family Night” promotion before a game against Columbus at Staples Center, one for which hundreds from Southern California church congregations converged to witness a rough-and-tumble hockey game for perhaps the first time, maybe it was the faith of the longtime die-hards still sporting the “Gretzky 99” jerseys that ultimately was being tested.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
There have been consistent and growing whispers about the conduct during the lockout of Don Meehan and the Newport Sports Agency that represents, among dozens of players, Trevor Linden - who served as PA president throughout the 2004-05 CBA negotiations - Jarome Iginla, Chris Pronger, Henrik Lundqvist, Wade Redden, Ryan Smyth, Nicklas Lidstrom, Sean Avery, Curtis Joseph and Dion Phaneuf….
“Who are these slime-balls who are trying to ruin my reputation? Why don’t they crawl out from under their rocks and show their faces? Let me tell you something, if anyone wants to file charges against me, let them. If anyone has the [guts] to make this claim against me, I’ll sue their [butt] off.”
From John Glennon at The Tennessean,
Modano did set a career record for goals by a U.S.-born player, but it was the Predators who snapped a five-game losing streak to the Stars with a 3-2 win in front of a sellout crowd at Nashville Arena.
The Predators hit the 100-point mark for the second consecutive season and – based on what Colorado did late Saturday – may have clinched a third straight playoff berth.
The contest took an ugly turn with 3:39 remaining, following Jordin Tootoo’s hard hit on Modano. Dallas defenseman Stephane Robidas skated hard toward Tootoo in defense of Modano, but Tootoo spun around and flattened Robidas with a punch to the jaw.
At Andrew’s Dallas Stars Page,
Robidas was taken off the ice on a stretcher and then was taken to a Nashville hospital. He suffered a concussion. He was released from the hospital Saturday night and will be re-evaluated in Dallas on Sunday.
Video of Tootoo hit:
Attention Wings, Canucks and hockey fans in general. Live blogging during the Wings/Canucks game tonight. Feel free to join in with your comments at this location. Bring your octopus and bra's too! note: brought to the top of page, originally posted at 3:10pm.
from On the Islanders Beat at Newsday,
In Nolan’s view, the injury that put the Islanders’ playoff hopes at risk is as much the fault of Begin as of DiPietro. “He did have a pretty good lane on getting the puck, which he did,” Nolan said of DiPietro. “The player just didn’t jump over him. In this league, you have to do everything in your power to avoid the goaltenders.
“I don’t think [the Rangers’ Sean] Avery listens to that rule. And a couple other players don’t listen to that rule. They bang into goaltenders. [Begin] could have jumped. He’s a seasoned veteran. He’s a fourth-line guy.
“He knew exactly what he was doing: ‘By hitting this goaltender, maybe I can knock him out, and we can get a chance to play in the playoffs.’ It’s one of those things.”
more... including a few words from DiPietro…
from Michael Russo at the Star-Tribune,
Boogaard said he thinks it’s time the NHL eliminates the last-five-minute instigating rule because it gives opponents license to go after star players during that time.
“The players should decide the game, not other people,” Boogaard said. “Some guys say that rule’s not in the back of their heads, but it is. It’s probably never good to cost your coach 10,000 bucks.”
No kidding. Just ask Kyle Wanvig, whose career with the Wild effectively ended when Lemaire wrote that $10,000 check for Wanvig instigating a fight with Pittsburgh’s Brooks Orpik late in a December game last season.
Boogaard’s contention that the rule should be eliminated comes on the heels of NHL general managers recommending that players should draw an automatic two-game suspension for their fifth instigator penalty, rather than their third.
from Jeff Z. Klein & Karl-Eric Reif at the New York Times (Sunday edition),
Despite a number of injuries in the past few years as a result of illegal or malicious play by fellow union members, the union’s only action — in marked contrast to similar bodies in soccer and football — has been to represent the assailants at disciplinary hearings.
“The N.H.L.P.A. will be reviewing and checking hits to the head with our membership at our annual player meetings this summer,” the union’s director of hockey affairs, Mike Gartner, said Friday in an e-mail message. “The issue of head shots will likely be an item of discussion for the competition committee as well,” he added, referring to a league committee.
much more on the NHL, inlcuding a nice feature on Paul Stastny…
from the CP via Metro News,
The Colisee Cardin in this town about 65 kilometres northeast of Montreal on the shores of the St-Lawrence River was packed on Friday for a North American Hockey League game between the hometown Sorel-Tracy Mission and the rival St-Jean Summum Chiefs.
But more important than the game itself for the crowd of 2,115 was the highly anticipated fourth instalment in a season-long series of fights between the league’s undisputed heavyweight Steve (The Crash) Bosse of the Chiefs and Jon (Nasty) Mirasty of the Mission.
While the NHL tries to clean up its public image in the wake of the Chris Simon stick-swinging and Todd Bertuzzi-Steve Moore incidents, the North American Hockey League - not to be confused with the U.S. junior league that goes by the same name - brings in fans with the promise of rough hockey and lots of fights.
For all their promises, however, these tech-enabled gambits have also raised some 21st-century problems. Greater access to fans is indeed great, but how can a league guard against high-tech cannibalization of its core business? If fans can watch highlights, entire games and even customized telecasts online, how can owners make sure enough fans are still forking over cash for the wooden seats? What effect will Web-enabled access have on a team’s media partners? Are there tech opportunities now in play for sponsors, too? And as tech advances and allows fans to choose where, when and how they’ll view their favorite teams and events, how much control are the teams and leagues themselves willing to relinquish?
read on… not NHL specific, but a good read on where this is headed…
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