Kukla's Korner

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If We’re Fixing All the Things Wrong With the NHL…

If the CBA is a working attempt to fix all the current problems in the NHL, can we also mention the Magic Point that appears in overtime games and is invisible in games that are decided in regulation? That is one of the most nonsensical rules ever devised.

The fix is quite simple (for those who payed attention in junior-high math): One game, one point. Period.

If Team A wins a regular-season hockey game in regulation, they are awarded one point. If the two teams are tied after regulation, the eventual winning team (via overtime play or the shootout) will be awarded 0.75 points, and Team B that lost in overtime will receive 0.25 points, still equaling the single point awarded for a single game. There's no reason for an extra point to *poof* into existence just because two teams cannot win in regulation. The winning team should not get the full value of the win because they could not triumph in 60 minutes, and the eventual losing team should get a twenty-five percent piece of the single-point pie for not losing in regulation. (Plus, the scaling is better: three overtime losses have equal weight to one overtime win and four OT losses equal a regulation win, rather than the current  two OT losses equaling the points of a single regulation win.)

This way, we might see teams actually play late into the third period as if they wanted to win the game, and not just skate around like they're auditioning for Battle of the Blades. All due respect.

I think this would put a little more game in the product, and take out gaming the rules for the magic point.

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Members Blog | Permalink

The NHL in Seattle?  It might happen.

The Associated Press and Fox News are reporting that the Seattle city council has just approved the construction of a new $490 million arena with the intention of luring both an NBA and an NHL team.  San Francisco hedge-fund manager Chris Hansen is spearheading the project.  With that kind of money in play, you have to think something substantial is in the works.

Although Hansen has been opaque about the details of what NHL team he would be attempting to bring to Seattle, it is a tempting proposition for thousands of hockey fans in the Pacific Northwest to mull over.  An environmental impact study is still pending before the project could move forward.

Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink

Damn the Torpedoes - My fantasy league is recruiting.

Hey fellow KK'ers.  Our fantasy hockey league has been going 9 years strong, through the last lockout and will continue to go.  We're looking for one extra guy to join by Thursday so if anyone wants in, we're drafting Sunday and will continue in good faith that the season will eventually come around.  If it doesn't, you'll at least get into a historic league that will have many more good years to come.

It's a head-to-head league on Yahoo, 3 keepers per year (you'll be inheriting an exiting team's options, some goodies in there including one Anze Kopitar and some guy named Patrick Kane..)

Reply if interested..

Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink

Breaking Down the Nash Trade

After a five-month dizzying ordeal, forward Rick Nash has been traded from the Columbus Blue Jackets to the New York Rangers in exchange for forwards Artem Anisimov and Brandon Dubinsky, defenseman Tim Erixon and the Rangers’ first pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.  The Blue Jackets also send to the Rangers a conditional 3rd round pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft as well as minor-league defenseman Steven Delisle.

The national pundits have viewed the trade as an abomination for the Blue Jackets yet the Blue Jackets organization, while local observers and fans have viewed the trade as a great move by Blue Jackets General Manager (GM) Scott Howson.

While I view the trade, on the surface, as neither great nor devastating in the overall sense, with consideration to all of the parameters and the length of time needed by Howson to make this trade, I feel the trade is simply a case where Howson, in baseball jargon, was entrusted by ownership to hit a home run and settled for, at best, a ground-rule double.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, New York Rangers, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: artem+anisimov, brandon+dubinsky, rick+nash, tim+erixon

Trading Rick Nash:  Handicapping the Options

In my previous article on Rick Nash I outlined the variables and complications associated with the foregone conclusion in some league circles that Columbus Blue Jackets lone franchise player, Rick Nash, will be traded prior to or during the upcoming National Hockey League (NHL) Entry draft, scheduled for Friday, June 22nd.

The Columbus Dispatch’s stellar beat reporter Aaron Portzline disclosed “that as many as seven teams have had “significant” trade conversations with Blue Jackets General Manager (GM) Scott Howson about Nash during the past 10 days and that a handful of other clubs – three or four, maybe more – have ‘kicked the tires’ to see what a deal might cost them.”

Much like the limited potential list of suitors who Nash had provided to Howson – those for which Nash would consider waiving his No Movement Clause (NMC) – no one except Howson knows who has made the specific offers.  However, it is known that specific teams were actively pursuing, and appear to continue to pursue, the possibility of a trade with the Blue Jackets for Nash.

Assuming that Blue Jackets General Manager (GM) Scott Howson can broker a deal to garner the necessary return associated with one of the NHL’s elite power forwards, I now offer my analysis of the potential trading partners – NHL organizations who covet Nash – and what type of proposal could entice Scott Howson.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: rick+nash

Why Trading Rick Nash is Complicated

It’s expected that the Columbus Blue Jackets will trade their only true All-Star player and face of the franchise Rick Nash on or before the upcoming NHL Entry Draft on June 22nd.  Rumored trade discussions and speculated trading partners have been flying almost as quickly as trying to keep the hottest of DVDs on a Blockbuster store shelf.

And while some pundits and local observers believe this long-speculated trade of Nash is a forgone conclusion and will go down before the draft, I believe that doing so is a lot more complicated than that and I’ll explain why.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: brian+burke, craig+patrick, glen+sather, rick+nash, scott+howson

The Daily Bites NHL Mock Draft - First Round 2012

The NHL draft will begin on Friday and it is a chance for every team to have some hope about their future.  This draft is very interesting because after Nail Yakupov (the consensus number one pick) there are a plethora of differing opinions among experts and scouts as to where players should be rated.  This makes an exercise like a mock draft very difficult, but also a lot of fun.

I am not considering any potential trades in my mock draft as that is just too difficult to predict.  Seeing as the number one pick is definitely in play I think we are going to see plenty of action at the Consol Energy Center on Friday night.


Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: draft, mock+draft, prospects, yakupov

Will the Marlies Success Translate to the Maple Leafs Next Season?

The Toronto Marlies had a great season and although they were swept in the Calder Cup final on the weekend, they had an excellent playoff run as well.  What is most impressive with the Marlies playoff run is that they have done it with a minimal amount of AHL “veterans”.  Other than Mike Zigomanis, the rest of the squad is made up of legitimate NHL prospects.

The Marlies great run is getting Leaf fans thinking about how their success might translate to the big club next year.  There have been some recent cases where AHL success from the previous season appeared to help the NHL clubs with big improvements the following season.  Most recently the Ottawa Senators jumped up 18 points in 2011-12 after their affiliate, Bighamton Senators, won the Calder Cup in 2010-11 and the Montreal Canadiens had a 14 point jump in 2006-07 after the Hamilton Bulldogs won the Calder Cup in 2005-06.

I decided to look back at 18 seasons from 1991-92 to see how NHL teams fared the year after their AHL affiliate played in the Calder Cup finals.  I used difference in points from the previous season as my criteria for judging “improvement” at the NHL level.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: ahl, depth+chart, marlies, prospects, toronto

Toronto Maple Leafs Top 25 Prospects

I recently completed a series of articles analyzing the Maple Leafs organizational depth at each position.  After completing that exercise I thought it would take some time to rank the top 25 prospects in the organization and give some projections.  For each player I give their ceiling, a projection and for the top 15 prospects I also give a comparable player.

1.  Jake Gardiner, D
a.  Ceiling – top pair defenseman, Norris trophy candidate
b.  Projection – top four defenseman, 40+ points
c.  Comparable – Dan Boyle

2.  Matt Frattin, F
a.  Ceiling – 30+ goal scorer, All-Star forward
b.  Projection – top six forward, 20-25 goals
c.  Comparable – TJ Oshie

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: depth+chart, prospects

Toronto Maple Leafs Organizational Depth Chart – Right Wing

This is the final article in a series looking at the Toronto Maple Leafs organizational depth by position.  Thus far I have completed my review of goalies, defensemen, centermen, and left wingers, which leaves us with right wingers to finish things up.  As I stated in my previous articles, most forwards can play multiple positions and often do throughout a season. I will do my best to categorize players as centers, left wingers or right wingers.  For example, I am including Nazem Kadri in the right winger evaluation.  Although Kadri plays center with the AHL Toronto Marlies, he has almost exclusively been a right winger in his stints with the Maple Leafs, which suggests that he will be a winger at the NHL level.

Right Wingers on 2011-12 roster:

Phil Kessel
Clarke McArthur
Matt Frattin
Colby Armstrong


Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: depth+chart, prospects, right+wing, toronto

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