Kukla's Korner

On The Ice For One Big Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mick Kern of the NHL Home Ice Blog,

If you had to win ONE big game, be it for the Stanley Cup, or, if your expectations are more realistic, be it for first place in your division, or even the last playoff spot in the conference…which player would you most want to have on your side?

A few conditions, but of course.  First, no Hockey Hall-of-Famers can be considered.  Way too obvious.  Second, this one may stir up some debate as to what defines a star, but any player most fans would recognize as a star cannot be included (though many did vote for Danny Gare…and we allowed him to be included, so go figure).  Third, the player can come from any era, any team, but we had to have a concrete, logical reason why.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Cap Comes Into Play For Ducks Roster Spots

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Wood of the OC Register,

Aspiring NHL players Bobby Ryan and Brett Festerling, whose training-camp performances have put them in solid contention to be on the Ducks’ opening-night roster, are at opposite ends of a curious twist in the league’s salary-cap system.

Ryan, a winger chosen second overall in the 2005 entry draft, is in jeopardy of not making the team because of a relatively big contract that includes an $821,700 base salary at the NHL level and $925,000 more in potential performance bonuses.

Festerling, a defenseman who was never drafted and originally joined the Ducks on a training-camp tryout in 2005, could land a spot in part because his $473,300 NHL salary would be barely above the league minimum of $450,000.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Wings Under The Cap For Now

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star,

With Chelios going on long-term injured reserve and his salary not counting against the $56.7-million US cap, the Wings payroll now sits at $56.250-million US.

“The deadline (to trade a defenceman) possibly could be pushed back,” Wings general manager Ken Holland said.

The choice appears to be down to either Derek Meech or Kyle Quincey.  “I think each of the kids has played okay,” Holland said. “There’s been the odd giveaway, but all (of them have) played pretty well.”

more on the Wings…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Khabibulin Wants To Get Back On The Ice

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from TSN,

Khabibulin’s agent, Jay Grossman told TSN that his client has playing options with the Russian Continental Hockey League (KHL).

“Nik has several options, both here and over there,” Grossman told TSN.

“However, nothing has been finalized and by no means is anything imminent.”

Grossman admitted that he would like to get a deal worked out quickly so that Khabibulin could get back on the ice.

“Nobody is looking to drag this thing out,” he told TSN.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nikolai+khabibulin

Laraque the “Toughest in the League”

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From the Canadian Press,

Several NHLers consider Laraque the league’s top heavyweight and make sure to give the six-foot-three, 245-pounder ample space.

“He’s probably the toughest in the league,” says Ottawa Senators enforcer Chris Neil. “He’s strong, he’s powerful. It’s one of those things where you watch his fights, meanwhile, when he’s out there on the ice, he’s coming after you, so you’ve got to be aware.”

Calgary Flames captain Jarome Iginla, no stranger to the rough stuff, agrees.

“I wouldn’t want to get caught in a line brawl with him,” he says with a smile.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: fighting, georges+laraque

Thinking Radical Changes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Maney at Portfolio,

Put every game on line live, supported by ads and free. Store them on line so if I can’t get to a screen until 30 minutes after the game starts, I can start watching from the beginning—or I can watch hours later. Use a Hulu or Kyte type of strategy so fans can seed NHL games around the Web, on blogs and Facebook pages and so on. The No. 1 priority should be getting games in front of eyeballs and becoming the league that excites the digital generation.

That would be a truly daring, radical strategy. In fact, it’s what Washington Capitals owner Ted Leonsis told me he’d do if he were starting the NHL from scratch today.


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

Afternoon Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“There are times when we choose our challenges, and there are times when they choose us. It’s what we do in the face of those challenges that determines who we are and what we will become.”

-Travis Roy.  More from and about Travis at the DakotaStudent.

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: travis+roy

Isbister Not Going To Binghamton

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Sportsnet,

Brad Isbister’s time with the Ottawa Senators organization has come to an end. The veteran forward did not report to the Binghamton Senators, despite being assigned to the AHL farm club last week.

Isbister remains under contract with the Senators, but the NHL club will loan him to a European club for the rest of the season if his agent can work out a deal.

If Isbister fails to land a job elsewhere, the Senators will likely suspend him.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brad+isbiste

Still Lots of Questions About Melrose

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Scott Burnside at ESPN,

Still, there is a consistent belief in the hockey community that the decision to hire Melrose after a 13½-year absence from the coaching scene runs somewhere between risky and foolhardy.

“That’s a big question mark for them,” national hockey analyst and former NHL netminder Darren Eliot said recently.

Other hockey sources, including current NHL general managers, questioned Melrose’s ability to stay current on trends in penalty killing, power plays and defensive schemes.

One of the Lightning’s new owners, former NHLer Len Barrie, rolls his eyes at the oft-repeated questions surrounding the team’s coaching choice.

read on for more on Melrose, plus his history with his assistant coach Cap Raeder.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: barry+melrose, cap+raeder

Finger Out With Foot Injury

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from TSN,

Defenceman Jeff Finger, who has only played one pre-season game, will likely miss the first week of the season as a foot injury is taking longer to heal than originally expected.

The 28-year old, who signed a four year deal worth $14 million with the Leafs in the summer, suffered the injury in the Maple Leafs pre-season opening game against the Sabres.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jeff+finger

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