Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Entries with the tag: khl

GIF- Not Sure If This Would Be Legal In The NHL?

What Do You Think?

 

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Video- Brutal Hit In The KHL

How about 20 games?

 

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Afternoon Line- Arpon Basu On Andrei Markov

If you missed it earlier today, Markov announced he will play in the KHL.

 

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Video- China Is A Country Full Of Tradition

The puck drop is not one of them.

 

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Video- This Is Not A Clip From Slap Shot

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Mike Keenan Out As Coach For Metallurg

 

Check out Szemberg's recent Twitter timeline for more on Keenan.

added 8:51am, via Darren Dreger tweets,

Bizarre turn of events in KHL. After losing 2nd straight game, Mike Keenan was fired when he arrived at the arena this morning.

Keenan is unclear as to what his future with the team or league is at this point, but says he's been told his citizenship will be granted.

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  Tags: khl, mike+keenan

Video- That’s The Mike Keenan We Know

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Who Is Steve Moses?

from Bob McKenzie of TSN,

NHL teams are not looking for Moses to lead them out of the wilderness as much as they are simply trying to determine whether he can part an NHL defence.

His name is Steve Moses. He is a 25-year-old, 5-foot-9, 170-pound winger from Leominster, Mass., and he's attracting NHL interest this season because he's leading the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) in goals, with 35 in 56 games for Jokerit (Finland). He also has 56 points in 56 games, sixth best in the KHL.

"He's the top (unrestricted) free agent in the KHL, that's for sure," one NHL management person said.

"Really small but really fast," said another.

Some teams think he's worth a shot. Others aren't so sure. In any case, what's certain is the diminutive University of New Hampshire alum – he played four seasons there between 2008 and 2012 – won't be leaving Jokerit (where he's in his third season), or the KHL, unless he has a one-way NHL contract tucked in his back pocket.

continued

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  Tags: khl, steve+moses

The Falling Ruble And The KHL

from the CP at TSN,

The Russia-based Kontinental Hockey League saw itself as the oil-rich rival to the NHL, offering a tempting, if less prestigious, alternative to playing in North America.

As the league planned to expand as far as Britain, the money on offer even attracted Russian stars like Ilya Kovalchuk and Alexander Radulov, who walked out on lucrative NHL deals to return home.

Then came the crash of the ruble this week.

The financial crisis has threatened the plans of players like former Vancouver Canucks goaltender Curtis Sanford, who came to Russia to save for his retirement.

"It's just really happened all of a sudden," the 35-year-old Sanford told The Associated Press. "These are some things that you don't expect when you sign a contract. Right now, you just have to ride the rolls of how it's going and hopefully it stabilizes and gets better."

continued

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It’s All About Hockey For The KHL And The Memorandum Of Understanding

MOSCOW, August 07. /ITAR-TASS/. The extension of the Memorandum of Understanding between the National Hockey League (NHL) and the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) is particularly important in view of the current global political situation, KHL President Alexander Medvedev said on Thursday.

An agreement to extend for one more year the Memorandum of Understanding, which stipulates respect for contracts of professional players from the both Leagues, was signed on Thursday prolonging it until June 30, 2015. The memorandum is primarily aimed at resolution of disputable situations in case of players’ transfer from the one league to the other.

“It is not a secret that the signing of first such agreement in 2011 was not easy,” Medvedev told an ITAR-TASS correspondent. “Annual prolongations of the memorandum were not smooth as well. I am not going to name the reasons behind as the most important thing is that the agreement was signed and in line with all rights and obligations, which KHL and NHL previously exercised.”

“The signing of the document is particularly important against the background of the current global political situation. It keeps the sport out of politics,” the KHL president said. “I only want to express hope that our foreign partners, who manage ice hockey in the United States, Canada and Europe, will maintain such approach in the future.”

continued

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Michael Leighton Out Of The KHL After Taking Ill Before Training Camp

from Bob Duff of the Windsor Star,

Michael Leighton won’t be returning to Russia for the upcoming Kontinental Hockey League season, but not for the reason you might think.

The former Windsor Spitfires goalie who calls LaSalle home was all set to join the expansion HC Sochi team for his second season of KHL action when illness felled Leighton.

Unable to attend training camp – KHL teams open camp in mid-to-late July leading to the early September start of regular-season play – Leighton and HC Sochi officials mutually agreed to void the contract he’d signed with the team.

“I was with Sochi and got sick and wasn’t sure when I was going to be able to make it there,” Leighton, 33, explained. “They have the right to look for another goalie and I agreed that I didn’t know when I’d be able to get there, so we both agreed to terminate the contract.”...

During the 2013-14 campaign, he suited up for Donbass Donetsk, the only Ukrainian-based franchise in the KHL and a city that currently finds itself in the midst of the armed conflict within that country....

“Where I was last year, it was fine all year until close to the end of the year and into the playoffs,” Leighton said. As troubles mounted in the area, the Donbass club moved to a base in Bratislava, Slovakia, playing its playoff games on the road.

“It did get kind of scary, because we weren’t playing at home,” Leighton said. “Teams didn’t want to travel to the Ukraine.

“When the season was done and I was home, I was happy that I was home.”

read on

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  Tags: khl, michael+leighton

What About Hockey With The Tension In Russia And Ukraine?

from Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star,

There will be no Ukrainian team in the KHL next season as the hockey world begins to wonder about the effects of a long-term conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

Donbass Donetsk — Ukraine’s only entry in the KHL — is on sabbatical for one season, a decision reached in June after the team’s arena was sacked, looted and set afire in May.

While most believe hockey will carry on as usual — or at least with blinders on — there is a belief that should tensions worsen, the KHL will suffer in terms of the level of play and from U.S. economic sanctions.

So far there has been no mass migration from the KHL, but it’s worth noting that the league’s signing season occurred largely before the current escalation that includes the downing of a passenger jet in Ukraine.

“I don’t anticipate that as a cause and effect at this point,” said NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly when asked about the possibility players would leave Russia. “I assume if the conflict is prolonged and/or worsens that may change, but I think it’s a fairly remote consideration for most players right now.”

continued

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KHL Lowers Salary Cap

from Vladimir Kozlov at SportsBusiness Global,

The Kontinental Hockey League has lowered the salary cap from 1.39B rubles ($40.4M) to 1.1B rubles ($32M) per squad for next season. Squads that go over that figure will be subject to a 20% “luxury tax” on any extra spendings. According to KHL President Alexander Medvedev, who announced the new salary cap on the air of Sport FM radio, another difference will be that the cap will apply to all players. Last season, some players who moved to the KHL from the NHL were exempt from the cap.

continued

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If Alex Ovechkin Moved To The KHL

from Adam Proteau of The Hockey News,

Of course, should Ovechkin decide to change leagues, he’d need to be extremely careful lest he come off looking like an even bigger villain than Ilya Kovalchuk did when he abruptly abandoned the New Jersey Devils last summer. There would be a sizeable contingent of mortified Washington fans no matter what Ovechkin said to explain himself, but life is all about framing and this situation would be no different.

Here’s how he should frame it: by pointing to other teams that have parted ways with their franchise player and discovered the devil they knew wasn’t always better than the one they didn’t. Take the Blue Jackets, for example. There was no shortage of angst-ridden Columbus fans when management traded their franchise cornerstone, Rick Nash, to the Rangers in the summer of 2012. That transaction benefitted the Jackets as much as it did Nash (who no longer had the full weight of an organization sitting on his shoulders). It was a classic short-term-pain-for-long-term-gain scenario.

Ovechkin leaving for the KHL would free up some $9.5 million in salary cap space for the seven years remaining on his contract. As we should know by now, that space would allow Caps management to acquire two or three high-quality talents and add balance to a roster that desperately needs it. Ovechkin could paint himself as making a sacrifice for the long-term good of the franchise.

There is some question whether the NHL would provide cap relief to the Capitals if Ovechkin returned to Russia, but the league would have an extremely tough time justifying a rejection of cap relief for one team after providing it to the Devils. As well, KHL president Alexander Medvedev recently gave an interview with Russian publication championat.com in which he said, “there is a legal way for any player if he decides to play in another league (to do so) without breaking the mutual (KHL/NHL) agreement to respect each other’s contracts.” Clearly, it’s technically possible.

more

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  Tags: alex+ovechkin, khl

Yaroslav Lokomotiv Advances To The Second Round Of The KHL Playoffs

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

One of the more inspiring stories of the hockey world occurred in Russia, during the first round of the Kontinental Hockey League playoffs, when Yaroslav Lokomotiv upset the two-time defending league champions Moscow Dynamo in the opening round.

Yaroslav lost its entire team in that plane crash back in September of 2011, forcing them to rebuild an historic organization from the ground up. The team had two coaching changes this season, with the veteran Dave King taking over four games from the end of the season, just as the Olympic break occurred, with the hopes of getting the team to the playoffs. Yaroslav went to Garmisch Parkenkirchen, Germany to train during the break, came back, squeezed into the playoffs as the eighth (and final seed) and then took out Dynamo in seven games in the opening round, an upset of major proportion.

continued

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  Tags: khl, yaroslav+lokomotiv

A Russian Interview With James ‘Myrtle’

from Slava Malamud at Sport-Express

In other matters, subject only Ovechkin our conversation was not limited. Questions on the eve of starting in October NHL accumulated many. What's cooking for the first full NHL season postlokautny? Which league will come out of the very rapid in its recent history of the summer? What are the prospects of Russian stars - both on the ice and in terms of a career in North America? What to expect from the Olympians? How Sidney Crosby's health, in the end?

- During the lockout enough gloomy predictions about the future of the NHL, but for now, it seems, the league has experienced remaking without consequence. Do you agree? And what's the deal? - The first question Myrtle.

- I think it's pretty fair assessment. Moreover, I hear whispering officials that profits in the coming season will take off again in heaven. The fact is that this year's planned six matches in the open air in large stadiums, sponsors and outflows during the lockout happened. And why is that? We have already seen the same thing: the fans have short memories. Once returned to hockey, and they come back. Ratings during the shortened season were terrific. Loss of 34 league matches will not cause much harm. Or not cause at all.

much more (Google translation)

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  Tags: khl, sochi+olympics

Is The KHL Ready To Compete With The NHL?

from Steven Lee Myers of the New York Times,

Now, as it prepares to open its sixth season Wednesday, the league has regained its confidence and momentum, moving markedly closer to its goal of creating a competitive, international alternative to the National Hockey League. It may not yet be a true rival as the world’s premier place to play the game — in large part because the business of sports in Russia today means none of the teams are profitable. Even so, the league and its teams enjoy the lavish patronage of Russia’s industrial giants and the political support of President Vladimir V. Putin’s Kremlin, which views sport as an instrument of Russia’s domestic and foreign policy.

The league starts the new season with 28 teams, having adding Admiral in Vladivostok and Medvescak in Croatia’s capital, Zagreb. The teams now play in eight nations across a staggering nine time zones, stretching from Central Europe to Asia. In June, a group of billionaires with personal ties to Mr. Putin bought a stake in one of Finland’s top teams, Jokerit, along with its arena in Helsinki, clearing the way for it to join the league next season and creating a furor at home.

“I’m not the most popular man in Finland,” Harry Harkimo, Jokerit’s chairman, said in a telephone interview of his decision to jump to the K.H.L. The league’s level of play, he said, was already competitive with the N.H.L. and would raise Jokerit’s level, he explained.

read on

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Kuznetsov On Why He Wants To Play In The NHL

from RIA NOVOSTI,

Washington Capitals prospect Evgeny Kuznetsov told R-Sport on Monday he is yearning to leave Russia for the NHL to avoid stagnating as a player.

Last week, the 21-year-old said this season would be his last the with his hometown team Traktor Chelyabinsk, before he moves overseas to join Capitals, who drafted him 26th overall in 2010.

“If I don’t leave, I might stop developing as a player,” Kuznetsov said. “I still need to learn a lot and I understand that if I don’t go there now, then it would be difficult to leave.”

continued

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  Tags: evgeny+kuznetsov, khl

Come Back Home Ovechkin

from Russian Machine Never Breaks,

Friday, during a fan forum, Dynamo Moscow general director Andrey Safronov said that he’d talk to Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin about coming back to Russia. Ovechkin, a Dynamo alum who played for the club until 2005 as well as during the 2012 lockout, is under contract with the Capitals until 2021. The reigning Hart trophy winner is slated to receive $79 million over the next eight seasons.

Here is Safronov, as quoted by the Russian ITAR-TASS news agency:

Ovechkin has a current contract with the Capitals. Can we try to pull him out? We’ll talk, we’ll look at each other and will have some result. Right now all Russian national team players want to come back to their homeland. KHL shows its force and credibility. And finances are important too. Taking taxes in account, playing in Russia has become way more attractive for players.

continued

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  Tags: alex+ovechkin, khl

Remove Foreign Restrictions From The KHL

from R-Sport,

The KHL must dodge outside influence from the Russian hockey federation and make “serious concessions” with its stringent roster policies if it wants compete with its North American counterpart, the NHL, Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk head coach Vladimir Krikunov said Wednesday.

Krikunov, who has coached in the KHL since its inception five years ago and guided Russia at world hockey championships in 2005 and 2006, called the eight-country league “half-amateur” and wholly reliant on the federation.

The comments are unusually strong for someone with close ties to the league and the federation, both of which benefit greatly from state funding.

“Now it’s a half-amateur league that depends on the Russian hockey federation,” Krikunov, 63, told R-Sport.

The coach said contentious rules limiting teams to five foreign players and mandating each carries two players born after 1992 should be abolished because they weaken the quality of play. He also said the four-country Euro Hockey Tour, which halts the KHL’s schedule for two weekends in November and December, has to go.

continued

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Antropov Headed To The KHL

from Luke Fox of Sportsnet,

Another NHLer bolting east, or another NHL career coming to a close?

Unrestricted free agent Nikolai Antropov, who scored six goals and added 12 assists in 40 games played for the Winnipeg Jets last season, is bound for the KHL.

Antropov signed a two-year deal with Astana Barys, a KHL club based in his native Kazakhstan, the team announced Thursday.

continued

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Mike Keenan- “Malkin Is Better Than Crosby”

from Sport-Express (google translation),

One of these days the players Magnitogorsk "Metallurgist" held their first training session on the ice, which was the debut for new head coach Mike Keenan. What he thinks about his new job the famous 63-year-old, who led in the past seven NHL and the Canadian team?

Alexei DUZENKO 
Magnitogorsk

- Who you are, whether it is your will, would like to see in the ranks of "MMK"? After all, at one time, when you go to the NHL from team to team, for you to follow, and many star players ...

- Actually, all vacancies players in Magnitogorsk are already filled. Also in "Metallurg" is a selection service, which this summer had been working on a complete set of ...

- Well, if you dream ...

- Well, have persuaded (laughs).

- Probably, the first as a true Canadian, you're invited to a "Magnitogorsk" Sidney Crosby ...

- No, Malkin is better than Crosby! This is my opinion. Although, wait, I will answer in a different way: agree to work in "Magnitogorsk" directly with these two great players.

continued with again, google translation...

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North American Hockey In A Crisis, KHL Should Step In

from Alexei Bayer of The Moscow Times,

Even though the NHL is still the most prestigious hockey competition, hockey in North America is in crisis. The NHL has been convulsed by regular strikes and player lockouts. But there are deeper problems. In North America, hockey is played on narrow rinks, where big, fast defensemen make it very difficult to skate. Goal cages are too small for huge goalies wearing wide light-weight equipment. With the exception of the four-on-four overtime, NHL games have turned into boring, grinding, low-scoring contests between huge men on skates elbowing each other along the boards. No wonder it is the least popular of the four major team sports in the U.S.

"European" hockey is played on wider surfaces. It is a beautiful, swift game where skating and passing are at a premium. It certainly has a better chance to win worldwide following — if only it can get the right leadership.

Russia is uniquely positioned to provide such leadership. Hockey stars are, along with hydrocarbons and weapons, its only world-class export. In 2008, Russia used its bulk and resources to form a Eurasian league, the KHL, which next year will have teams from 7 neighboring countries, including some hockey powerhouses. A team from Vladivostok will also enter the competition. This may become a gateway to the Far East, and professional clubs may be soon organized in Japan, South Korea, China and even Alaska. American kids, for example, started playing hockey long after NHL clubs appeared in U.S. cities.

What Russia needs is to view the KHL as a purely commercial undertaking and not a national one. It should pattern its business model on the NHL. As matters now stand, the KHL is excessively Russia-centered. Even its main trophy, the Gagarin Cup, has nothing to do with hockey and everything with Russia's chip-on-the-shoulder nationalism and outdated patriotism.

more

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  Tags: khl

Mike Keenan Heading To Russia

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  Tags: khl, mike+keenan

Will Ryan O’Reilly Stay In Russia?

from Tim Wharnsby of CBC,

The Colorado Avalanche will have more difficulty luring back restricted free agent Ryan O'Reilly from Russia than the Montreal Canadiens and Dallas Stars will have in locking up their unsigned youngsters, P.K. Subban and Jamie Benn, respectively.

Metallurg Magnitogorsk, the KHL team that O'Reilly plays for, is paying the 21-year-old forward a prorated $4-million US to play in Russia this year.

It is also believed that Metallurg Magnitogorsk is willing to increase O'Reilly's contract if he agrees to stay in Russia. Negotiations between O'Reilly's agent Mark Guy and the Avalanche have yet to produce a new deal for native of Varna, Ont. (near Stratford). The two sides are believed to be far apart.

continued

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  Tags: khl, ryan+o'reilly

Video- Kovalchuk Prepares For His NHL Return

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  Tags: ilya+kovalchuk, khl

Can Sergei Fedorov Still Play?

from The Voice of Russia,

Ice hockey legend Sergey Fedorov is mulling over a return to competitive hockey at the age of 43, says CSKA Moscow’s interim head coach Vyacheslav Butsaev.

Fedorov, who has not played a game since leaving Metallurg Magnitogorsk at the end of last season, is currently plying his trade as CSKA’s general manager.

“We’ve talked to him about it [returning to ice rink],” the R-Sport news agency quotes Butsaev as saying. According to Butsaev, Fedorov has been training recently and is now in “excellent condition.”

continued

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  Tags: khl, sergei+fedorov

All Alexander Medvedev, KHL President

from SportsDaily.ru (rough translation),

- Alexander, you acknowledge that it is possible to leave the KHL some guys who "can not wait" in the NHL?
- Players are allowed to use the clause in the contract that allows them to complete the case to stay in the NHL lockout. And as far as I know, a number of NHL players or decide to stay in the Continental League, or it is treated.

- Do you know their names?
- Yes, well known. But let them not to call it - in order to avoid speculation and influence.

continued (translated)

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  Tags: khl

Report- Bryzgalov Done With The KHL

via R-Sport,

 KHL hockey team CSKA Moscow intends to release Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov from his lockout contract on Monday, a team source told R-Sport on Sunday.

CSKA had announced that Bryzgalov had skipped Sunday's 4-2 defeat of Dynamo Moscow due to injury, but the source said it was because the 32-year-old wanted out.

The thing is, Ilya is leaving the team," the source said. "Officially they'll announce it on Monday. The reason, most likely, is that the lockout should be over pretty soon in Bryzgalov's opinion.

Bryzgalov has played 12 games for CSKA since arriving from Philadelphia on September 21, winning six and with a 91 percent save rate.

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  Tags: ilya+bryzgalov, khl

Semin Still Trying To Get In Game Shape

from R-Sport,

Carolina Hurricanes forward Alexander Semin said Tuesday he is still not at full fitness despite playing almost two months of lockout hockey in his native Russia.

Semin was one of the NHL’s first big names to move abroad when the lockout took effect, joining his hometown junior team in late September before moving up to the KHL with Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod two weeks later.

“Without doubt, I still need to improve my physical condition,” he said on the Torpedo website.

continued

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  Tags: alex+semin, khl

All Alex Ovechkin

from Rossiyskaya Gazeta via Russia Beyond The Headlines,

Rossiyskaya Gazeta: Alexander, according to information from the U.S., the NHL season might still get underway – and soon. For how much longer will we [in Moscow] be able to watch you play in the flesh?

Alexander Ovechkin: I have no news about that. Of course, I know a bit more than the press, but it makes no sense to talk about it. Why blow up rumor into fact? If it's possible to stay here, I'll play for Dynamo. I've developed an excellent relationship with the club, the coaching staff, and the guys on the team. I feel at home.

RG: The club president says that, even if the NHL lockout ends, Dynamo still wants to keep Ovechkin. Is that realistic?

A.O.: I don't think it's “unrealistic.” Anything is possible. But let's wait and see what happens over there across the ocean.

RG: Can the top players in the NHL somehow influence the negotiations between the Players’ Union and the League?

A.O.: Our head, Donald Fehr, is very well acquainted with our terms and conditions. Nobody wants a pay cut or a lower status. Everything in that respect is up to Fehr. We have full confidence in him, but there could be some twists and turns ahead.

read on

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  Tags: alex+ovechkin, khl

Big Expansion Plans For The KHL?

from Slave Malamud at the Toronto Sun,

Ultimately, Fetisov, 54, dreams of creating the KHL's Far Eastern division by expanding the league into China, Korea and Japan, he told Sport-Express in an interview.

The KHL already features teams from the Czech Republic and Slovakia, with Italy scheduled to join next year, and Fetisov says the league should push ahead with a global-domination strategy.

In the interview, in which he calls NHL commissioner Bettman "a local lord-ling" and proposes to offer the likes of Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin "material incentives" to stay in the KHL, Fetisov envisions a hockey universe no longer dominated by the North American league. He thinks that if $1 billion were offered immediately to the NHL's brightest locked-out stars, it would create an exodus of players into the KHL that would pound Bettman into submission.

Most importantly, he sees a single global hockey enterprise, with tight regulations on player transfers, an annual showdown between the Stanley Cup and Gagarin Cup champions for the world bragging rights, and a unified calendar which would accommodate semi-annual slots for the Olympics and the World Cup with the best players participating for their national teams.

more

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  Tags: khl, vlacheslav+fetisov

One Difference Between The KHL And NHL

from RIANOVOSTI,

“With KHL and NHL hockey, the level of the game is close overall, but there’s a huge difference between the images,” said Rotenberg, who heads up big-spending SKA’s business and marketing operations, in comments carried by the Russian edition of Forbes magazine.

“There’s the feeling that gods are playing [in the NHL], but here it’s not clear who’s playing, grey faces, yellow ice.”

“The result is low-cost TV rights and a lower number of fans.”

With many of the KHL’s teams playing in shabby Soviet-era surroundings, Rotenberg said part of the blame for the KHL’s presentation problems lay with regional governments’ reluctance to fund modern arenas.

more

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  Tags: khl

While The KHL Thrives, The NHL Sleeps

from Matthew Fisher at Canada.com,

The Russian-led Kontinental Hockey League is rumoured to be considering adding teams in the searing desert of Dubai and in fashionable Milan. NHL President Gary Bettman yearns to place new NHL teams in Seattle, Kansas City and Milwaukee. That says everything about his narrow American-centric vision for the game.

Bettman’s circuit is asleep. Except perhaps for a few weeks every two or four years and only then if it controls how well it is paid for freeing its players to play for their national teams, it has little desire to be part of the international game that Canadians are so interested in. It is lukewarm if not hostile to the idea of putting more teams in Canada although teams from there now pay so many of the league’s bills. Now it seems intent on frittering away what’s left of its good name again by getting involved in a protracted labour dispute with its employees.

The Russians, who were not so long ago regarded as stolid, humourless automotoms, now swagger and dream. They are also inclusive. As well as about a dozen teams from the distant hinterlands, the 26-team KHL has franchises in oil- and gas-soaked Astana, Kazakhstan as well as Latvia, Ukraine, Belarus, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

more

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  Tags: khl

All Ovechkin

As can be the case at times, the Russian language can be hard to translate but I think you will get most of the conversation...

from Sport Express,

- Kovalchuk said NHL commissioner Gary Bettmen - a man who loves to show off, right?

- Of course. All heads of leagues in which there is a struggle between the club owners and the union want to distance ourselves from the conflict and associated backlash and pressure from the outside. But when you go to the press and said that the proposal is great, you need to understand - what you say. Who is it good? For Bettmena? Or for club bosses? When you give a new offer, it must involve some movement forward. But now there is no movement forward.

- What do you think the players are ready to make concessions?

- I do not understand with a fright, we have to agree to reduce the already signed contracts, which the owners themselves, and we were given. And even in this mezhseozne. The same Parise, Webber, Suter. Who are we kidding? It turns themselves. That's why the lockout and on.

- Do you think that if much will cut contracts, NHL players will be able to remain purely legal in Russia?

- I think it is possible. We have signed some contracts that are now going to be cut.

more (translated)

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+ovechkin, khl

How Good Is The KHL?

from Matthew Fisher of PostMedia News at the Vancouver Province,

With the NHL shut down by a labour dispute, some Russians have bragged that their Kontinental Hockey League is now the best hockey circuit in the world.

There is even giddy talk that the 26-team Russian league, which also has teams in Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Latvia, will be primed before too long to challenge the North American circuit for global hockey supremacy.

There is something to the first boast. Half a dozen top NHL players, including two of the best – the sometimes mercurial Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins, and the totally unpredictable Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals – are not sitting out the strike but playing in what Russians call the Motherland.

These stars are ably supported by a fast-skating, technically proficient cast of more than 500 mostly Russian players, including several dozen who could play in the NHL if they chose to. Most of the players may not forecheck, shoot or go to the net often enough, but they nevertheless play compelling hockey.

But any suggestion that the KHL will match the NHL any time soon is absurd.

continued

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  Tags: khl

Pay Up

from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,

For further proof things are radically different over in the KHL, we defer to Calgary goaltender Jeff Glass, who plays in Siberia where he sees new things every day: "We played Omsk Avangard the other night, who is captained by Alexander Frolov, formerly of the L.A. Kings. With a few minutes left in the second period, they threw the puck on goal and crashed the net, as hard as guys do in this league. There was a little controversy, but the puck was under me, not in the net. Frolov was convinced he had scored and was insisting they go upstairs to review the play. I told him and the ref not to waste anyone's time, because 100% it was not in. He asked me how much I wanted to bet that it was a goal. Knowing that he probably uses a salary like mine as spare change, I didn't say much. He stuck out his hand and said "$100." I didn't know what to do, other than take my glove off and shake it right back. The play was reviewed and the call on the ice stood, no goal. No more than five minutes after the game their stick boy had 3,200 rubles, the equivalent of $100, delivered to our room."

read on if you want to know what Brent Sutter is up to these days...

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: khl

Morning Line

“Guys from the NHL — Bobrowski, Varlamov, and Bryzgalov - have amazing confidence in their abilities. They play a much bolder game than our boys. It's a healthy kind of arrogance, which our players would be wise to adopt.”

-Vladislav Tretiak, President of the Russian Hockey Federation, the NHL players now playing in the KHL.  More from Ilya Desiaterik at Russia Beyond The Headlines.

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  Tags: khl

Learn The Rules

via RIANOVOSTI,

Locked-out NHL stars coming to play in the Russia-based KHL should learn the league's rules rather than complaining about referees, the head of the KHL refereeing department told R-Sport on Tuesday.

The NHL declared a lockout last month when pay talks between owners and players foundered, causing players such as last season’s MVP Evgeni Malkin and big-scoring forward Alex Ovechkin to come to the KHL.

Both have since found themselves disagreeing with referees over on-ice incidents.

“In every country there are certain nuances, however the player’s obligation is to know the rules,” referee supervisor Alexander Polyakov said.

“You can find the KHL rules on the league website, by the way, so a player who’s come to play in the KHL should go and read them.”

Some players complaining about referees were just sore losers, Polyakov suggested.

“No-one likes to lose, but if the game isn’t going your way either, then these types of comments emerge,” he said, adding that there would be no tolerance or “special permits” for stars.

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  Tags: khl

ESPN Media Release Regarding KHL Games

Minimum of seven games to be carried exclusively in the US, including the KHL All-Star Game

Games will also air on ESPN in UK

ESPN today officially announced that it will deliver a minimum of seven games from 2012-13 season of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) exclusively on ESPN3 in the US and on ESPN UK.  Coverage begins Tuesday, October 9 at 1 p.m. ET with ESPN SportsCenter anchor Steve Levy and NHL studio analyst Barry Melrose calling the Lev vs. Dynamo Moscow game live on ESPN2 and ESPN3.  The game will re-air in primetime on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. ET and will air on delay on ESPN in the UK (Wednesday, Oct. 10 at 2 p.m. BST).

Confirmed games through the end of the month feature an all-star lineup of hockey players, including Alex Ovechkin (Dynamo Moscow), Ilya Kovalchuk (SKA), Evgeni Malkin and Sergei Gonchar (Metallurg Mg).

read on

thanks to Puck Daddy for the pointer...

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: espn, khl

Semin May Move To The KHL

via RIANOVOSTI,

Carolina Hurricanes forward Alexander Semin is close to agreeing a move to KHL team Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod just a week after joining his hometown junior team, Torpedo president Oleg Kondrashov said Thursday.

Semin agreed last week to play for his boyhood team, Sokol Krasnoyarsk, in Russia’s second-tier VHL league during the NHL lockout and has since scored three points in two games.

“We expect that Alexander Semin will join us in the next week,” Kondrashov said in a website statement.

He did not specify why he thought Semin, who is not collecting a salary in Krasnoyarsk, would leave Sokol for Torpedo.

Defenseman Anton Volchenkov of the New Jersey Devils is another target for Torpedo and the team is looking to sign a third NHL player, Kondrashov said.

“We expect Anton Volchenkov at Torpedo this weekend,” he said.

“We’ve got our eyes on one more player from the North American league,” he added.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexander+semin, khl

Update On The KHL On ESPN3

from Stu Hackel of the Red Light,

We contacted ESPN and a spokeswoman sent along this statement: “We can confirm that we have reached an agreement in principle to bring some KHL coverage to fans in the UK (on ESPN) and in the US (on ESPN3).  However, details of a deal and specific coverage plans are not yet solidified.  We will share more schedule details as soon as possible.”

The spokeswoman added that ESPN hoped the deal would be concluded by the end of the week but confirmed that the Dynamo-Ak Bars game would not be seen, the entire schedule has yet to be determined, and we should disregard the games that the KHL trumpeted on Tuesday.

The KHL’s announcement was, to say the least, a bit premature. The league has yet to respond to our request for comment, so it’s uncertain if this snafu was the result of a miscommunication or some over-eagerness on KHL’s part.

read on

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  Tags: espn, khl

All Kovalchuk

from RIANOVOSTI,

How long do you think the NHL lockout will last?

“For some reason, they’re still refusing to talk about the serious problems, but instead talk about some borderline issues. The main thing is that all the guys have now shown the team owners that they can go and play somewhere, do their favorite thing and not just stay home. If you stay home then you can start getting depressed and clearly the team owners are hoping for that, but I think that this time things will be a little different.”

How would you feel about playing a full season in the KHL?

“I really don’t care, the main thing for me is hockey. I really like it here and if there isn’t a season there, then I’d be delighted to play it out here and try to do it as well as possible.”

Why haven’t stars like Sidney Crosby or Steve Stamkos come to the KHL?

“Maybe they’re a bit worried and hesitant about coming to Russia, but it’s a personal thing. If the lockout lasts a year then I think we’ll see a few more people in the KHL.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, NHL Talk, Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ilya+kovalchuk, khl

KHL On ESPN3 Won’t Grow The Game

from Chris Smith of Forbes,

Many are hoping that, in addition to making NHL stars available to American viewers, ESPN’s deal might also be a sign that the network will finally begin covering hockey in other formats. The “Worldwide Leader” has famously avoided hockey coverage in the past, and the NHL still goes without mention on SportsCenter despite the league being on the verge of cancelling regular season games (meanwhile, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade’s Twitter coverage of last night’s Bears-Cowboys game gets a full breakdown).

The theory is that ESPN will be more inclined to give the sport broader coverage if it has an actual investment in hockey’s popularity. In other words, more hockey coverage could translate to more hockey viewers on ESPN3. Unfortunately, that optimism is likely misplaced. There is little sense in covering the European hockey league when American KHL viewership is minimal and NHL players’ tenures are temporary. Also consider that ESPN3 has been streaming the ICC’s World T20 cricket tournament since mid-September; when’s the last time you caught a cricket highlight on ESPN?

This isn’t to complain, of course. It’s welcome news that ESPN will stream the KHL adventures of hockey’s top playmakers, and it’s even somewhat enjoyable that the NHL and NHLPA are forced to watch another group – especially one that has a contentious history with the league – profit on their protracted negotiations. So let’s simply enjoy our overseas glimpse a tentertaining hockey, just don’t expect it to have any great impact on the sport’s popularity.

more

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  Tags: khl

Yakupov Can Play With KHL Team

from the CP at TSN, 

Yakupov, the No. 1 pick by the Edmonton Oilers at this year's draft, was suspended earlier in the week after it was revealed he didn't secure a transfer card to join Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk.

The International Ice Hockey Federation ruled he played illegally when he suited up for his hometown team in two games earlier this month.

Hockey Canada, which refused to sign off on Yakupov's transfer, and the Canadian Hockey League both believed he belonged with the Sarnia Sting of the Ontario Hockey League.

But Hockey Canada has since changed its tune.

"Hockey Canada and the Russian Ice Hockey Federation have announced that the OHL has determined that Yakupov had no independent legal advice when, at the age of 17 years old, he signed his contract with Sarnia," the Hockey Canada statement read. "His release goes into effect immediately."

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, Non-NHL Hockey, European Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: khl, nail+yakupov

Paul Maurice On Coaching In Russia

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

“The hockey’s different,” Maurice added. “How they view it is different. The travel’s different. How everything moves is different. It’s so difficult to describe. Your first month, you notice everything that’s different, and everything seems to be different.

“Then after you’re here for a while, you start to notice some of the similarities, and you realize there’s not much difference in a lot of areas after all. And I guess you get to the point where you realize, just because it’s different doesn’t mean it’s wrong.”

Maurice is coaching Metallurg Magnitogorsk, a perennial KHL powerhouse that was in a rebuilding year until the NHL lockout became official. At that point, Magnitogorsk received three valuable reinforcements: Evgeni Malkin, the NHL’s reigning MVP; Sergei Gonchar, the Ottawa Senators’ defenceman; and Nikolai Kulemin, the Toronto Maple Leafs’ forward.

read on

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  Tags: khl, paul+maurice

Yakupov Can’t Play With KHL Team

MOSCOW, September 26 (RIA Novosti) – The KHL has imposed a temporary ban on NHL No. 1 draft pick Nail Yakupov, preventing him from playing for lockout team Neftekhimik Nizhnekamsk until an investigation into the forward is resolved, the league said Wednesday.

The KHL statement said the 18-year-old starlet, who has already made two appearances for Neftekhimik after his lockout contract was reigstered last Thursday, can not take to the ice again under the International Ice Hockey Federation has given the all-clear.

Contacted by R-Sport, the IIHF could not immediately clarify the nature of the probe into Yakupov, though it may involve objections from his NHL team the Edmonton Oilers over his participation in the Russian-based league.

The return of the starlet forward to Russia was hampered by Edmonton, which intended to send him to Canadian major junior team Sarnia Sting, where he had racked up 170 points in 107 games before being drafted.

The IIHF is supposed to release a statement today which I will add to this post when available.

added 11:02am,

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: khl, nail+yakupov

Who Is This Mysterious Goalie?

via RIA NOVOSTI,

KHL team Dynamo Minsk has lined up a “top-level” goaltender from the NHL as a lockout signing after an injury to the Minnesota Wild’s Niklas Backstrom put his proposed move in doubt, the team’s sports director Igor Matushkin said Monday.

Backstrom is with the team for medical tests to assess whether he is fit enough for a signing, Matushkin said.

“If Niklas Backstrom is not able to take part in matches from the very start then another goaltender will join our team,” Matushkin said on the team website.

“I can only say now that he is a goaltender from the top level of the NHL. Regarding his name, I think I’ll be able to answer you tomorrow.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: khl

Would You Watch KHL Games?

via the KHL website,

The UFA Sports agency, which acts as the KHL’s marketing service partner in nations outside the League’s borders, has announced a surge in interest among North American TV companies seeking to broadcast matches in the KHL Championship.

At present, the American media are interested primarily in showing games featuring Alexander Ovechkin, Evgeny Malkin, Sergei Gonchar and other locked out NHL stars, so current talks are focused on coverage of games featuring Metallurg Magnitogorsk, Dynamo Moscow, CSKA Moscow and SKA Saint Petersburg.

There are also ongoing talks with interested broadcasters from Great Britain and a number of European countries about showing KHL Championship games.

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, Non-NHL Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: khl

“You Went Against The Contract When You Locked Me Out”

That's a quote from the folks at CSN Washington discussing the possibllity of Alex Ovechkin not returning to the NHL. Here's the video...

 

 

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, NHL Talk, NHLPA, Non-NHL Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+ovechkin, khl

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