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Sunday Hockey Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

• The story circulating through NHL front offices, and relayed to Slap Shots by four general managers, is that Dale Tallon essentially had been operating as the Blackhawks’ lame-duck GM since late November or early December, when he agreed to trade netminder Nikolai Khabibulin to Washington for center Michael Nylander.

That ill-advised deal was vetoed by club president John McDonough, who then bided his time until he could come up with a reason/excuse to dismiss Tallon….

• There is, however, widespread belief that Dallas owner Tom Hicks’ financial problems—his team canceled prospects camp in order to save money—will force the Stars to cut payroll . . . with the cutting to feature former Tampa Bay Conn Smythe winning first-line center Brad Richards, who has two years at $7.8 million remaining on his deal.

more hockey talk

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Useless Camp

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

The NHLPA is making news in the hockey world by suggesting that players skip the on ice portion of the Olympic orientation camps that will be held by the Canadian, American, Russian and German Ice Hockey Federations.  Their public reason is that it is not clear that the players have insurance coverage should they be hurt during the camp.  I think the private reason is because these camps are essentially useless.  The Olympics will occur in February 2010.  The camps occur six months early in August 2009.  They are far too short and far too far in advance to teach players a new system (assuming that is a smart move with the best players in the world) or get different players used to playing together.  They are not needed to get players in shape for the Olympics.  NHL hockey players will be in shape and anything they do six months in advance has little impact.  They have developed out of the administrative desire to do something, even if it is useless, to try to gain an advantage in the Olympics.  In theory orientation camps may sound like a good idea, but because of the NHL season, they must be held six months in advance, which is too early to be useful.  That doesn’t stop them from happening.  They are an administrative way to cover the hockey federation.  If a country fails to live up to expectation in the Olympics, they cannot be blamed for not doing enough to orientate players.

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Wings Feel Depth At The Goalie Position Is Key

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,

Despite Ty Conklin’s departure in free agency, the Wings have a slew of talented young goaltenders.

Jimmy Howard, Thomas McCollum and Daniel Larsson are high-round draft picks with seemingly bright futures.

“We like the depth,” said Jim Nill, the Wings’ assistant general manager. “They’ve done a good job of progressing, getting better. They just need experience.”

With Conklin gone, Howard will back up Osgood. Howard has four years of development in Grand Rapids.

McCollum and Larsson will split time with the Griffins, with former Notre Dame goalie Jordan Pearce, an undrafted free agent, likely to be placed in a lower-level minor league.

Here’s how the Wings’ goaltending stacks up, nearly two months before trianing camp begins:

more

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

The ESPN Debate

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ken Campbell of The Hockey News,

But the league struck only a two-year deal with NBC for one very important reason. Its cable deal with Versus expires in two years and the league is hoping that by having both its over-the-air and cable contracts up for renewal at the same time it will have more options when it comes to its next television contracts.

“It was the right deal at the right time,” said one industry insider.

Could that mean the league is poised to return to ESPN in two years? After all, ESPN is owned by ABC, so the league could package both its over-the-air and cable packages in one deal.

A new deal with ESPN would be a welcome relief for those who don’t have access to Versus and are essentially shut out of NHL games. The league left ESPN after the lockout in favor of Versus after ESPN publicly questioned the value of hockey on its network.

more

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: espn, nbc

What A Save

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Watch the top ten saves from the 2008-2009 season!

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Media, NHL Video, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Waiting To Be Signed

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

It is a little late, so just in case you missed Eric Duhatschek’s Friday column at the Globe and Mail,

There is a seasonal element to NHL player movement that mirrors the ups and downs stock market – and nowhere is that more evident than in the case of Derek Morris and Mathieu Schneider, two useful players who are languishing on the unrestricted free-agent list, some 17 days and counting after the doors opened for business in the summer of 2009.

Not so long ago – or in the days and weeks leading up to the NHL trading deadline – Morris and Schneider were in-demand commodities whose value was high….

Halfway through July, the net result is that some relatively useful players remain available. The market generally slows to a crawl around now and then picks up again towards the end of August, leaving the players on pins and needles for the better part of the summer, not knowing where they might eventually land. And the competition for players from Russia – which was supposed to be a bigger option – becomes less so because their season starts months earlier than the NHL’s.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Chicago Fans Boo McDonough

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Len Ziehm of the Chicago Sun-Times,

The most interesting reaction during the opening night of the Blackhawks Convention came from the fans who overflowed the Hilton Chicago grand ballroom for the opening ceremonies Friday.

They greeted president John McDonough with a chorus of boos, a sure indication the club’s most loyal supporters didn’t like the firing of general manager Dale Tallon. McDonough figures to take some more heat today when he’s part of a question-and-answer session with the fans….

(Stan) Bowman received only lukewarm applause Friday, and coach Joel Quenneville and the players were reluctant to discuss the incident.

‘‘It’s a tough business we’re in,’’ Quenneville said. ‘‘A lot of coaches have been let go in the last few years, and we’re seeing more managers changed. It’s a negative part of our business, but Dale will still be around, and this gives Stan an opportunity. He’s really looking forward to it. We’ll move on and look forward to getting better.’‘

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: john+mcdonough

Correlation Between Team Points, Corsi And +/- Ratings

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

In this summer’s look at sabermetrics and hockey, I have been looking at the Corsi Number as an alternative to +/- ratings.  Its appeal is that it includes a lot more events than +/- (as it is the difference between shots directed at the goal for and against when a player is on the ice in 5 on 5 situations).  The drawback is that it includes missed shots and blocked shots as being equivalent to goals.  Any systematic reason why a player or team might take or allow an excessive number of shots that miss that net (or some other anomaly like that) would skew the ratings.  Yesterday, I gave the team Corsi Numbers from last season and it led to a very good discussion.  Some teams have Corsi Numbers that do not correlate well with their regular season success.  For the most part this can be explained (the comments to that post contain some of this discussion).  For example, Boston has the 13th best team Corsi Number at +49 despite finishing first overall

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What Are Some People Thinking?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Truthfully, with all the people that now have access to locker rooms, I am surprised we have not seen more of this.

I imagine it is a huge concern for anyone in the public eye and the threat always exists.

LOS ANGELES, July 17 /PRNewswire/—With respect to recent Internet postings of Erin Andrews, she has authorized her attorney, Marshall B. Grossman of Bingham McCutchen LLP, to issue the following statement:

“While alone in the privacy of her hotel room, Erin Andrews was surreptitiously videotaped without her knowledge or consent. She was the victim of a crime and is taking action to protect herself and help ensure that others are not similarly violated in the future. Although the perpetrator or perpetrators of this criminal act have not yet been identified, when they are identified she intends to bring both civil and criminal charges against them and against anyone who has published the material. We request respect of Erin’s privacy at this time, while she and her representatives are working with the authorities.”

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: erin+andrews, espn

This Could Be A Problem

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via CP writer Chris Johnston’s Twitter,

The NHLPA has sent a memo to members recommending that they skip on-ice sessions at Olympic camps because of inadequate insurance coverage.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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