Kukla's Korner

Versus Draws Big Numbers For All-Star Coverage

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NEW YORK, N.Y. (February 1, 2011)—VERSUS, the exclusive cable television home of the National Hockey League (NHL), scored on Sunday night by earning its most watched NHL All-Star Game in the network’s history.  The telecast on January 31 averaged close to 1.5 million viewers and peaked at nearly 2.0 million viewers from 6:45-7:00 p.m. ET.

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Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Not Sure About the New Unis? Same Here (So Far)

Blog: KK Hockey By Jon Jordan

I’m not going to commit to complete disdain for the Tampa Bay Lightning’s new uniforms, if only because that wouldn’t be fair until I’ve had the chance to see them in person. But, the first glances I got in pictures yesterday – pictures on a cell phone at that, while driving back bleary-eyed from All-Star Weekend in Raleigh – solicited much of the same negative reaction you may have heard in other circles. (Polls conducted by both the St. Pete Times and Tampa Tribune are reflecting as much so far.)

I believe one of the first things I may have said was something regarding the Lightning taking Sunday afternoon’s revealing of the NHL’s silly “Guardian Project” seriously enough to put themselves at the front of the line in the battle against Deven Dark and his minions. (Mr. Dark’s may not have been revealed as of yet but every evildoer has to have minions, no?)

Honestly, I can’t get away from the gut reaction that, in attempting to create a classic look, the Lightning have gone all superhero on us – at least with the home threads. (And lawyers for The Flash might just be meeting as we speak to consider all options.)

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: lightning+logo, lightning+uniforms

Digging For Hockey Gold

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Greg Mercer of The Record,

They’ve been travelling the country, sifting through stacks of hockey cards bound in boxes, books and elastic bands, looking for the next Bert Corbeau.

Most of us have probably never even heard his name. But to professional hockey memorabilia collectors like Sylvain Martineau and Jason Martin, Corbeau is about as big as they come.

Nicknamed the Pig Iron, he was a veteran defenceman whose career predated the NHL. He never appeared in any all-star games and played in Toronto for the St. Pats, the team everyone watched, before they became the Leafs.

But it was Corbeau’s rare 1923-24 rookie card printed by a long-gone candy company that was worth an awful lot to one private collector — well in excess of $100,000, making it the world’s most expensive hockey card.

continued

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Malkin Not Ready To Play Just Yet

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,

Evgeni Malkin is an NHL scoring champion and playoff MVP.

And for an hour or so during the practice at Consol Energy Center Monday afternoon, he was one of the most gifted fourth-line centers in hockey history.

But Malkin won’t be filling that role—or any other—when the Penguins face the New York Rangers at 7:38 p.m. today at Madison Square Garden, because coach Dan Bylsma has ruled him out of the game.

The reason, Bylsma said, is the lingering effects of a sinus infection Malkin has been battling of late.

“He’s not ready to go,” Bylsma said.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: evgeni+malkin

Report: Regier Received Extension Last Fall

Blog: KK Hockey By @DaveDavisHockey

From The Buffalo News,

It appears the Buffalo Sabres will finally announce the sale of the team to Pennsylvania billionaire Terry Pegula on Thursday. No surprise there.

But here’s a stunning transaction they’ve never publicized: A contract extension was handed out some time last fall to embattled General Manager Darcy Regier, who was widely believed to be on his way out once Tom Golisano sold the franchise he purchased in 2003.

The News has learned Golisano gave Regier a two-year extension, a deal the team has never announced. The contract’s total value is believed between $2 million and $2.5 million.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: buffalo+sabres, darcy+regier, regier+contract+extension, sabres+sale, tom+golisano

Red Wings hope to firm up Datsyuk, Cleary’s statuses today, avoid Snowpocalypse

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By George Malik

Red Wings coach Mike Babcock refused to declare Pavel Datsyuk or Dan Cleary fit to play after Monday’s practice, so the Wings have a few important items on their agenda this morning, starting with clarifying both players’ statuses, getting a handle on when Tomas Holmstrom may return, and, of course, getting the hell out of Metro Detroit before the Snowpocalypse hits. 

Red Bird II’s spent the All-Star Break making a strange little side trip to Long Island, but today the Wings’ DC-9-50 will be hauling the Wings’ tails out of Detroit and off to Canada’s capital before the brunt of a foot’s worth of snow-inducing blizzard hits Metro Detroit late this afternoon.

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Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Globe and Mail’s MacGregor pens introduction of the decade

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

The Globe and Mail’s Roy MacGregor reflected upon his Q and A with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman in light of the NHL’s wavering support for the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia—and the NHL has some proper worries about going to Sochi not only because of the travel and lack of TV ratings bang for their buck, but also the probability of security issues on the northwestern shores of the Caucasus’ ethnic/religious powder keg—but it’s MacGregor’s introduction to the story that eclipses everything else in the article because it’s just so…Gary:

“I’m not someone who likes to look back,” he says.

The problem is, when you spend a few hours talking to Gary Bettman, the commissioner of the NHL, so much of the time is spent looking at what happened (the owners’ lockout) and what is or is not currently happening (action on headshots) that you barely get around to the future. 

And once there, you don’t actually ever seem to arrive.

“I look forward,” Bettman likes to say. And he does, but in such a circumspect, non-committal way that it is, at times, difficult to say exactly what he might be thinking – in part because he himself cannot be certain which way league general managers might turn on, say, discipline or team owners on such matters as franchise relocation.

Continued, discussing the Olympics from a Canadian perspective…

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“If I can keep it on and play well, I’ll keep it on. It’s still a different look when you’re looking out. You’re used to seeing nothing and now you’ve got that little line to deal with.”

“You get it in the eye or below the eye, and you can end up with surgery and loss of vision. I was pretty fortunate and lucky to deal with what I did as opposed to what it could have been.”

-Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks who will be wearing a visor, at least for the short-term.  More from Curtis Zupke of Ducks Blog.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+getzlaf

Time To Make Some Moves

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,

Ottawa Senators GM Bryan Murray is in the final months of his tenure and one of his last jobs will be to send just about anyone not named Daniel Alfredsson, Jason Spezza or Erik Karlsson packing.

In Toronto, Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke expects to hear from defenceman Tomas Kaberle’s agent, Rick Curran, this week about a decision on the player’s no-move clause in his contract. If Kaberle finally decides he is ready to accept a trade, Burke will get a list of acceptable teams, which is expected to have just two or three Eastern Conference teams on it thanks to Kaberle’s aversion to leaving Toronto.

This, of course, will greatly limit the chances of Kaberle moving.

For example, it means Burke likely will not be able to ship him to the San Jose Sharks, who are looking for a top-four defenceman and are said to be disenchanted with 24-year-old forward Devin Setoguchi, whose production slipped this season.

A more likely candidate for San Jose is Leafs defenceman François Beauchemin, who has a partial no-trade clause in his contract. Burke, who wasn’t talking Monday, is said to have a list from Beauchemin of 12 teams he would not mind as a new employer.

continue reading for some Sabres talk…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, Ottawa Senators, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Red Wings in the Power Rankings, first week of February (technically), part 1

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By George Malik

With reservations, I present you both the first set of the technically-the-first-week-of-February crop of Power Rankings, which offer upbeat takes on the Red Wings’ state of affairs, as well as a few Wings-related stories of note on the eve of Snowmageddon:

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Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

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