Kukla's Korner

OLN Deal Is Messy

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the globe and Mail,

This, of course, has been a public-relations disaster for the NHL, which is trying to get its revamped game watched, but instead has seen it denied to established fans as well as new viewers. Did the league see this coming? "We were certainly aware of the carriage issue with Cablevision," NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said yesterday. Daly said the league, for obvious reasons, would like OLN's distribution expanded to a basic tier. Just as obvious, OLN's decision to black out the hockey telecasts on Cablevision and EchoStar is a disaster for the NHL. TV consultant Neal Pilson, a former president of CBS Sports, is a hockey fan, lives in New York and subscribes to Cablevision. "EchoStar happens to be a client," he said. "So I'm being very careful here about how I'm describing the situation. The important point is these issues come up every once in a while and they get resolved. They're growing pains [for OLN]." An NHL source said a resolution could be close. "The league is working behind the scenes," the source said. "A deal could be a day away or a week away. If it's a month, then I think you will see the league take a more aggressive position."

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Fathers Day For Hurricanes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from AP via the Charlotte Observer,

Peter Laviolette vividly remembers his father helping him lace up his first pair of skates. Now, as coach of the Carolina Hurricanes, he relishes an opportunity to express his gratitude. Through part of a continuing effort to build team chemistry, the Hurricanes are allowing their players to bring their dads along on the team's upcoming trip to Pittsburgh.

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Campbell Responds To Coaches Being Fined

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Colin Campbell was on Buffalo radio today and was asked a few questions.

The guys asked Campbell if criticism of the new rules changes around the league could get loud enough that the league might feel pressure. Campbell replied, "We don't want those critics to be effective, we don't want to muzzle people either. A couple guys crossed the line and its the same-old, same-old." "If I'm Lindy Ruff or Darcy Regier in Buffalo and I didn't like that hooking call late in the game against Florida that cost us the game, I'm going to keep my mouth shut, whether the call was right or wrong, I have to do what's right for the game." The guys asked Campbell how the league is enjoying or not enjoying the shootout. Campbell said, "I myself, I'm not supposed to say this, but I don't like it, but I like to watch it. It's a crazy thing, something inside me says its not supposed to happen in our game, but something else inside me says, I don't want to leave, I have to see what happens here in this shootout."

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Optimistic Future For The NHL

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP via TSN,

Gary Bettman and Ted Saskin say the new-look NHL is working on and off the ice. Attendance is up, the game is more exciting and the league's bottom line appears to match early expectations. "The fact that we've come out of the gates so strong is obviously a tremendous sign and the fact that the game itself has improved so much and the fans are recognizing that and commenting upon it," said Saskin, executive director of the NHL Players' Association. "It all bodes well for the future."

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Physical Play Is Missing From The NHL

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sports Illustrated,

Serious fans, the people who pay attention even when the puck goes a few minutes without entering a net, don't recognize their game. The greater number of scoring chances, the improved flow, the restored advantage that good skaters have over plodders -- those are all welcome changes. But to achieve them, the league has bled out the physical play and passion that gave the sport its edge. We've seen a lot of speed-driven, 6-5 gunfights. But with players paranoid about drawing whistles, those games often look more like All-Star workouts than Slap Shot grudge matches.

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USA Hockey Submits Roster For Olympics

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Globe and Mail, T

he U.S. Olympic men's hockey team joined Canada in submitting its preliminary long list of players last week but unlike its rival decided not to release the names publicly. "For us it wasn't newsworthy," U.S. team GM Don Waddell said Thursday.

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Jagr Transcript

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Conference call with Jaromir Jagr, from NHL.com,

Q. Now that you have had 10 games in the season, how do you feel that the new rules have affected the game? JAROMIR JAGR: Well, when you play the game, when you watch the game on a TV, I think it's more exciting game. It's more skating, up-and-down hockey. For offensive players, you can get more scoring chances and shots. Plus the offensive zone is a lot bigger and it is better on power plays.
more

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Tommy Fighting For His Life

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I have posted a few articles about Tommy in the past, now Nhl.com has done a story about his battle.

Tommy Garrett was a 14-year-old goalie from the hockey-mad Ontario city of Peterborough when he was stricken three years ago with a virulent form of leukemia. His life has been extended by the important gift of bone marrow from a Windsor man he had never met. Now, Tommy is fighting for his life in Calgary because his body's immune system is attacking itself. And to the surprise of no one involved in the sport, the hockey world is rallying to his cause.

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Jarome Arthur-Leigh Adekunle Tig Junior Elvis Iginla Interview

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from ESPN,

On Dec. 19, 1995, the Calgary Flames traded away former playoff MVP and fan favorite Joe Nieuwendyk to the Dallas Stars for promising teenager Jarome Iginla. At the time, the move was heavily criticized by both fans and media in Calgary. A decade later, it's a different story. Iginla, 28, is arguably the biggest star to play for the Flames. In this week's edition of "Facing Off," Iginla talks about how his upbringing has helped him find success in Calgary.

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NHL Wrong To Censor Coaches

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

If the NHL is truly as good and terrific and really neat as they would have us believe, then they should be big enough to stand up to a little negative feedback — instead of essentially muzzling an entire league, because in the new NHL, there never should be heard a discouraging word.

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