Kukla's Korner

Bad Idea Playing In England- Hogwash

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Brad Polik at MSG Network,

For Pete’s sake, If you do a GOOGLE search for ‘England’ and ‘hockey’ you get all these sites about field hockey. It takes some heavy research to find any valuable information about Great Britain and “ice hockey.”
Not only is having the game in England a bad idea, but California hockey fans are going to have to get up at 9:00 a.m. to watch the game. It’s tough enough to get people from Cali to watch hockey, now you’re going to tell them to catch the season opener at the breakfast table.
What a bad idea.


I must disagree.  When the announcement came out about these games, I received hundreds of emails from fans all across Europe, asking for ticket details.
These games will draw the NHL Euro fans who don’t get the opportunity to actually see a game in person.  I am looking forward to seeing the multiple national flags waving in the crowd and expect it to be quite an event.

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Crosby Can Thank The Taxpayers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from a Pittsburgh Tribune-Review editorial,

As money is fungible, it is no stretch to say Mr. Crosby’s financial fortune is partly guaranteed by taxpayers. They’ll receive less property-tax “relief” so the teenage hockey phenom can be magnificently paid….
So, sure, we’ll join the chorus and praise the young star for being a team player. He appears to be mature beyond his years for taking less money now in hopes of keeping the nucleus of a hot team together and on the road to another Stanley Cup.
But none of this would be possible without taxpayers. And that remains a sad commentary considering Greater Pittsburgh’s far more pressing needs.


Filed in: Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Could Jason Smith Wear The “C” In Philly

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Philly News,

Neither coach John Stevens nor general manager Paul Holmgren gives much of a hint to what they are thinking, but each concedes that Smith will be given significant consideration.
“He’s certainly going to get some consideration and there are a lot of scenarios that we’ve already discussed. We’ll come up with the guy that we all feel comfortable with,” Steven said yesterday.
For Smith, the 33-year-old veteran who was traded to the Flyers with Joffrey Lupul for Joni Pitkanen and Geoff Sanderson, the “C” is not something on his mind as much as making a significant impact as a player.
“I just want to go out and play,” Smith said yesterday after he was formally introduced to the media and handed his game jersey by Holmgren. “It’s a new start and a new challenge and I’m looking forward to what’s coming.”


Filed in: Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Backstrom Settling In

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Washington Post,

Hanlon said that Backstrom’s comprehension of team meetings conducted in English is better than Ovechkin’s was in his rookie season.
“He understands. He’s way more advanced. In Sweden, there’s a lot more English spoken, a lot more English TV channels and they all seem to watch MTV.
“With him, it’s more getting used to our training, getting used to some of our systems,” he continued. “We’ll spend more time showing him our system play than we would some of the others.”

read on (reg. req.)

Filed in: Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Talking Hockey

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Phiily News,

While there are a number of years separating the playing careers of Joe Watson and Derian Hatcher, they mirror each other’s thoughts on many issues. That might be because Hatcher is also an old-timer, heading to his 16th NHL camp in September. They talked about everything from the effects of concussions to the current state of their game…
Hatcher: I can go back 15 years ago and I would say that there’s definitely . . . players in the league with less heart. I don’t know why. I don’t think that, you know, when I came in, it was really never an issue. The players were there because they wanted it. It’s weird, and money probably does come into it. Something does, because I see players throughout the league who sometimes look like they don’t even want to be on the ice.

more, entertaining feature…

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Lamoriello Gets Back To Work

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Star-Ledger,

Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello returned from his trip to Minnesota, where he laid the groundwork to sign restricted free agents Zach Parise and Paul Martin.
“I met with Mr. Lamoriello and we had lengthy discussions,” said Parise’s representative, Neil Sheehy. “Multiyear is something we discussed. We talked about all the different possibilities and we’re still in discussion.”
Parise, who earned $703,000 in 2006-07, is in position to command a deal in the neighborhood of $4 million per season. A four-year, $16 million contract would seemingly suit both sides.
Martin, who made $2 million last season, figures to at least double his salary.
That would seemingly prevent Lamoriello from signing a big-ticket free agent such as Sheldon Souray or center Alexei Yashin. Souray might be headed for San Jose while Yashin has several lucrative offers to play in Russia.

more on the Devils…

Filed in: New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Why Not Go To Arbitration With Lundqvist

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

...it’s a complete mystery as to why Glen Sather would have agreed to spend that much money in order to avoid a salary arbitration hearing that had been scheduled for July 24.
The GM may have been willing to go well beyond the likely arbitration award of $2.3-$2.7 million as part of an unspoken agreement with Lundqvist on a future long-term contract to be negotiated in January that would go into effect in 2008-09. But the Rangers’ 2007-08 cap situation would have been far better served by the franchise goaltender taking less this year and more the following five seasons.

read on

Filed in: New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Cap Works In Some Areas

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Brian Milner of the Globe and Mail,

The NHL’s biggest financial headache, economists and other sports industry watchers say, is not clubs’ costs, but their vastly uneven revenues and profits. And the cap on salaries has done nothing to address the disparities, which have actually widened as the richer clubs have grown even fatter under the new system.
“The collective bargaining agreement has probably done its job on the cost side,” said a U.S. banker who has studied the finances of several teams. “The problem is that without a national [U.S.] media contract to speak of, all their revenues are variable.”

read on

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink

Rangers Trying To Trim Salary

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the NY Daily News,

The Daily News also has learned that Sather is shopping center Matt Cullen, with a trade back to the Carolina Hurricanes very much on the front burner. Should the Rangers shed Cullen’s contract (three years left at $2.8million per), they’d trim nearly $3million from this season’s cap hit.
That could simply provide flexibility for potential in-season moves. But it just as easily could be the first step in a plan to clear enough cap space to sign free-agent defenseman Sheldon Souray, whom the Devils and Islanders have pursued. Unloading defenseman Paul Mara’s $3million salary undoubtedly would be another requirement.

more on the Rangers…

Filed in: New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Brent Sutter Moving On, Maybe To New Jersey

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Darren Dreger & Bob McKenzie at TSN,

NHL sources tell TSN that Sutter is stepping down from his junior club to pursue a head coaching job in the NHL and that Sutter is the odds-on favourite to be named the next head coach of the New Jersey Devils.
“I really can’t comment,” Sutter said. “We will have an announcement regarding the Rebels tomorrow. That’s all there is to say at this point.”


Filed in: New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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