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Ward Still Thinking Carolina

from the News & Observer,

Aaron Ward, a big contributor to the Carolina Hurricanes winning the Stanley Cup, was traded (signed as a UFA) to the New York Rangers two months ago. But he's having trouble getting from traded away to gone away. At 10 a.m. most weekdays a handful of Hurricanes skate at their regular practice facility, the RecZone. Most mornings Ward skates with them -- a popular teammate turned lone Ranger. He doesn't wear the Canes colors, and he can't enter their locker room. But he still feels part of the team. "I can't say that this transition is as easy as I thought it was going to be," said Ward, 33. He joined the Hurricanes in 2001 and was part of the team's two runs to the Stanley Cup finals.

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Florida Owner Wasn’t Leaving

from Al Strachan of the Toronto Sun,

There are those who believe Elvis Presley is still alive. There are those who believe Mike Keenan resigned as general manager of the Florida Panthers on the weekend. The former group has a better chance of being right. The Panthers, now serious contenders with the New York Islanders and Chicago Blackhawks in the battle to become the National Hockey League's most dysfunctional team, announced Keenan had "resigned" and that Jacques Martin would be assuming double duties as coach/GM. That is what's known as making a bad situation worse.
continued added 7:44am, from Spector at Fox Sports,
Considered the face of the franchise for several seasons, Luongo is almost universally considered one of the game's elite netminders, despite never playing a single NHL playoff game. Keenan's inexplicable hard line approach to contract talks with Luongo, however, created a poisonous atmosphere between the two, ultimately resulting in Luongo's trade to Vancouver in June. I have a feeling that may have led to the beginning of the end for Keenan.

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Here’s Evgeni

from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

Mr. Malkin, who has spent the past several weeks in Los Angeles after leaving his Russian Super League team during preseason training in Finland, will sign the contract before a 10 a.m. news conference today at Mellon Arena. He arrived at Pittsburgh International Airport last night after flying across the country with one of his agents, Pat Brisson. Speaking through an interpreter, Mr. Malkin told reporters near the baggage-claim area that, "I'm very pleased to arrive here," and said he was looking forward to meeting franchise icon/owner Mario Lemieux.
In accordance with Russian labor law, Mr. Malkin exercised his option to sever ties with an employer by giving two weeks' written notice to Magnitogorsk, but it is not known if those regulations also allow him to ply his trade with the employer of his choice. While there are indications that Magnitogorsk has all but abandoned the idea of trying to have Mr. Malkin forced to play for it this winter, the team is expected to seek monetary compensation for surrendering his rights.
Despite the assertions of various legal experts, legal precidents are stacked against Magnitogorsk. They'll appeal for compensation with the backing of the Russian Hockey Federation. much more

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Malkin To Sign On Tuesday

from the AP via TSN:

Evgeni Malkin is about to become a Pittsburgh Penguins player. Malkin has spent three weeks training in the Los Angeles region, but is expected to sign with the Penguins on Tuesday - two days before the start of rookie training camp. Malkin's agents said last week they would open contract talks early this week, and the Penguins are planning a news conference Tuesday to announce the signing.
Malkin's contract terms are effectively set by the NHL labour agreement, so he is expected to sign a deal identical to that reached by last season's rookie of the year, Alexander Ovechkin. Ovechkin, drafted immediately ahead of Malkin, has a base salary of $984,2000, plus incentives worth $2.85 million a season. Ovechkin's contract includes $850,000 in relatively easy-to-reach incentives and another $2 million in additional bonuses such as winning a major league award.

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Grading Northeast Division Moves

from Allan Muir of Sports Illustrated,

The cultural makeover the franchise so desperately needed was almost total. Chiarelli replaced Mike O'Connell. Dave Lewis replaced coach Mike Sullivan. Harry Sinden stepped down. And in a move the value of which should not be underestimated, the B's swiped Jim Benning from the Sabres to be their director of player personnel. Add deals that will keep offensive centerpiece Patrice Bergeron draped in black and gold for the next five years, and Brad Boyes for two, and things simply could not have gone any better for the Bruins this summer. Chiarelli gets an A.
read on

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Preds Bulk Up

from the Tennessean,

The Predators finished last season with a group of centers that averaged 30.7 years old, had an average height of 5-11 and an average weight of 191 pounds. That group doesn't include Jerred Smithson, who didn't play much center down the stretch. This year's projected group, which includes Arnott, David Legwand, Josef Vasicek, Scott Nichol, Smithson and Vern Fiddler, averages 27.7 years old, has an average height of 6-1 and an average weight of 199. "No matter who we're matching up with, we're way better off with bigger, stronger center icemen,'' Poile said.
much more on the Predators...

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Random Useless Trivia About ‘The New Guy’

By Alanah Downie One of the entertaining things about pre-season is getting to know your team's new players. With that in mind, I drew up a quick list of odd trivia about one new member of every team. Maybe what's common knowledge to fans of their old teams is not necessarily known by their new fans. (Plus, it's more totally useless nonesense to fill your head with!) So here are some random facts about 'The New Guy'' on each team. Maybe readers who know a lot more about these players -- perhaps because the guy played on your team last year? -- will fill in some more trivia in the comments. Or feel free to provide random facts about other 'New Guys' not mentioned here. P.S. Thanks to Paul for throwing in some of the trivia. Anaheim Ducks - Chris Pronger 1) Pronger's nickname for Jaromir Jagr is "Puffnuts". 2) Also, Pronger was once diagnosed as having a heart attack during a game.(source) Atlanta Thrashers - Jason Krog Krog was the winner of the 1999 Hobey Baker Memorial Award. (source) Boston Bruins - Mark Mowers Mowers is married to former NCAA gymnast (and 1994 ECAC Rookie of the Year) Jana Reardon. (source)

Continue Reading »

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Contract Year For Doan

from the Arizona Republic,

"This next contract will be the biggest contract of my life," Doan said recently after skating and working out with other NHL players in Scottsdale. "I've played 11 years for the right to have this contract." Doan is signed for one more season and plans to honor the deal that will pay him $3.38 million. But he would love to sign a lengthy contract extension, preferably before the season starts next month. "Obviously, I want to get it done and settled, but I don't want to sign a contract just to sign a contract," Doan said. "I want to get a good deal. I love it here and I want to play here, but the team has to want me here. I would definitely like a contract extension, but at the same time, I'm not going to sign a bad deal."

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NBC Jumps Into Fantasy Sports Market

from Mediaweek.com:

NBC will relaunch NBCSports.com on Sept. 5, making it a standalone site and adding extensive video offerings, exclusive analysis and blogs from NBC Sports commentators, live event coverage, including a Sunday night post-game wrap up, and a Notre Dame football pre- and post-game show.

“The online sports marketplace is a robust market and has an enormous user base,” said Gary Zenkel, president, NBC Olympics and executive vp, strategic partnerships for NBC Sports. “There are 15 million fantasy sports players in the country and that is driving the market,” Zenkel said. “We believe it is an area that we have to get involved in.”

NBC has acquired “Allstar Stats” to help drive its fantasy gaming slate, and it will offer webcasts of various sporting events, including NHL hockey, on its website.


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KK- Server Issue

Sorry for the slight outage that lasted about an hour. Looks like everything is OK now. The official problem from my hosting service...

There appears to be high CPU usage in the Fremont data center location. Staff are isolating the issue and will post when more information is available.

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com





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