Kukla's Korner Hockey
Mike Richards has a dozen reasons to be smiling these days. His Philadelphia teammates and Flyers fans have many more.
Just how good is life for Richards, now in his third National Hockey League season?
Signing a 12-year contract extension and being named an All-Star, all within the span of two months, pretty much sums it up.
But even Richards, who leads the Flyers in several offensive categories, is amazed at how things have unfolded.
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
“There are no deals out there,” Nonis said.
“I think everyone is somewhat frustrated,” he answered before adding, “I thought there’d be more opportunity. I think everyone thought there’d be more opportunity. I mean, it’s almost February and there hasn’t been a major deal. When was the last time that happened? Probably never.”
But it’s happened this year and while it comes as little consolation to Nonis, he’s hardly alone in this matter.
The NHL is now roughly a month away from its Feb. 26 trade deadline and judging from commentary provided by GMs around the league, the market is currently deader than Arsenio Hall’s career.
That’s bad enough. What’s worse is it’s not likely to spring to life any time soon.
from Bolts Report at the Tampa Tribune,
Gang, I’m not one to work on spreading rumors or throwing stuff up against the wall until I hope something sticks. I don’t like to operate that way and to me it’s just a lot of hot air (or wasted print).
But I have to point this fact out tonight that Dallas had co-general manager Brett Hull and director of player personnel Dave Taylor in attendence at the game tonight. Not even completely sure they were there to scout the Lightning, but I can’t imagine they would come here just to scout a team in their own conference.
from Chuck Gormley of the Courier Post,
Reports had the Flyers offering center Jeff Carter, a prospect and a first-round pick for Sundin, who is the Leafs’ all-time leading scorer with 961 points in 955 career games.
“I can say for a fact that we have had no discussions with the Maple Leafs regarding Mats Sundin,” Holmgren said before the Flyers’ games against the Devils Tuesday night. “We’ll look at some things, but a lot depends on where we’re at (in the standings).”
more on the Flyers…
from the Toronto Sun,
Asked about his future in the league, Ferguson replied: “I’ve had one call and I suspect there will be plenty more. I already have 22 messages on my phone.”
During his farewell press conference at the Air Canada Centre yesterday, Ferguson repeated several times that he was “proud of his record” with the Leafs, despite the fact that his team reached the playoffs just once in his 31/2 seasons at the helm.
MLSEL president Richard Peddie didn’t share those same fond memories of Ferguson’s tenure, stating the outgoing GM “didn’t deliver” on his original plan.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
“I thought I had one or two deals done last week. I had some real good conversations with some (player’s) names in place and some real strong talk,” said Murray, who accompanied the Senators to Sunrise, Fla., as their three-game road trip continues tonight against the Panthers. “Then a day later, the names kind of changed, the deals kind of floundered and then just didn’t happen.”
It’s believed Murray may have been close dealing for the elusive top-six forward he has been looking to add all season….
With few teams willing to admit they’re out of the playoff race, it’s likely Murray held discussions with Kings GM Dean Lombardi, who has been actively shopping winger Ladislav Nagy and defencemen Jaroslav Modry and Rob Blake. Ideally, the Kings would like to get a goalie.
Murray probably also talked to Tampa counterpart Jay Feaster to see what direction Tampa Bay is going to go at the trade deadline.
from Ansar Khan at Mlive,
“Of course you’re concerned, but I think we’re doing the right thing,’’ Zetterberg said. “Before this happened in San Jose (Saturday, from a hit in the third period), I felt really good. ... I’m still positive. It’s not that I’m worried it’s going to go as it did last year, but you never know.’‘
Zetterberg said this latest flare-up isn’t as serious as the inflamed disc that forced him to miss the final 19 games of the regular season last year. He also doesn’t believe it’s as bad as it was last month, when he hurt himself by simply picking up a laundry bag and missed five games.
“I think this is more muscular; last year it was a specific disc problem,’’ Zetterberg said.
from Richard Sandomir of the New York Times,
McGuire said that being trained by Bob Johnson and Scotty Bowman, who coached the Penguins to Stanley Cup titles in 1991 and 1992, were crucial to his education as an analyst.
“They taught me to recognize changes in a game,” McGuire said, “and to see all the idiosyncrasies of a game: the neutral-zone defenses, face-offs, the control and flow of the game. Bob taught me how important it was to be positive and to delegate authority; from Scotty, I got discipline, hard work, attention to detail and how to match lines.”
During games, he is likely to receive e-mail messages from Bowman, a Hall of Fame coach. On Sunday, Bowman wrote, according to McGuire, “Milbury’s got some strong opinions.”
from Bob Duff at MSNBC,
If Malkin doesn’t get the job done, the NHL might as well pack up Lord Stanley’s mug and mothball the playoffs, because nobody other than hardcore hockey fanatics will be tuning in south of the border.
The loss of a marquee player at any time is a blow to the sport’s image. The Chicago Bulls were nothing without Michael Jordan, the Edmonton Oilers faded without Gretzky and both sport’s media presence suffered after their departures.
Crosby’s absence couldn’t have come at a worse time for the NHL.
via the AP,
The NHL and Versus have agreed to extend their contract by three years, the cable network confirmed Tuesday.
Terms of the deal were not immediately available.
The network, formerly known as OLN, began televising NHL games during the 2005-06 season. It paid $65 million for the first year, $70 million for the second, and exercised a $72.5 million option for this season.
Ratings for NHL games on Versus are up this season. Through 29 games, average viewership has increased 34 percent from 195,666 to 261,760. Versus is airing 57 regular-season games this season.
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.
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