Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Category: NHL-Talk

TSN Insiders Tonight

Gino Reda and the TSN Hockey Insiders discuss the struggles Carey Price continues battle off the ice and when he could return to the ice, the Ducks' decision to place GM Bob Murray on administrative leave, Bill Guerin's unclear situation with USA Hockey ahead of the Olympics, and the NHLPA seeking a law firm to handle their investigation.

Watch at TSN

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Changing The NHL

from Adam Proteau of The Hockey News,

I’ve been writing about NHL hockey for nearly 25 years now. I’ve been writing articles about NHL commissioner Gary Bettman for just about that long. I’ve even been accused of having a vendetta against the man, which I don’t, of course. I’ve just tried to hold his feet to the fire and ask him to be accountable because his primary role is to represent the league, good or bad.

So, in this latest, brutal, public misstep by the NHL – the Kyle Beach/sex assault fiasco in Chicago, I mean – there has been an uptick in calls for Bettman to step down after some 28 years in his role. I don’t expect that, though. I expect that Bettman’s real bosses – the 32 owners of the league who pay his salary – are willing to let him take all the bullets and remain a human safety shield from the outcries of media and fans.

I give credit to Winnipeg Jets owner Mark Chipman, who made some strong statements when facing media last week. Chipman needs to walk the walk after talking the talk, but this is a meaningful statement that fans and media can return to if Chipman’s deeds don’t follow his words.

The same goes for the 31 other NHL team owners. They can choose to let Bettman continue to take the flak for it, but it would behoove them to step up individually and assert themselves as an honest-to-goodness supporter of abuse victims’ rights. That’s for starters. They also need to figure out a way to contribute to hockey’s grassroots and prevent any predators from damaging the lives of more young fans of the sport. Hockey’s insular culture has to change, and real change starts from the top, but immediately following that, it’s the bottom and most vulnerable that needs help.

continued

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Afternoon Line- Rick Westhead

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Video- 32 Thoughts Tonight

via Sportsnet,

On this edition of 32 Thoughts, Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek discuss the Chicago Blackhawks firing Jeremy Colliton, Jack Eichel's looming surgery, the St. Louis Blues asking for COVID-19 cap relief, and more.

 

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Monitoring The Goalie

from Matt Porter of the Boston Globe,

The Bruins are involved in the latest development, which originates from the ninth floor of the 10 Post Office Square building in Boston’s Financial District. Sports science company Catapult is working on what could be a significant step to assist those who wield pads and paddles for paychecks.

The company this month will release a new goalie analytics solution, as they call it, for the Bruins and two other NHL teams (Flyers and Kings, along with Hockey Canada) that participated in beta testing last month.

Fourteen of 32 NHL teams use Catapult’s existing data-capture technology. Players at practices wear Catapult monitors, which measure speed, force, and muscle output. Cameras capture their movement. Coaches and trainers will always listen to a player who says they’re tired or sore, but this extra data helps the Bruins and other teams build better practice plans, manage injuries, and deploy players.

Until now, time on ice, eye tests, and verbal communication have been the main factors in sussing out workloads for goalies. At Bruins, Kings, and Flyers practices and games over the last few months, Catapult CEO Will Lopes said, cameras took 360-degree footage of goalies, capturing about 900 data points per second, to measure how explosive they were over time, how often they dropped down, and how often they were in a “set” position. The goal: determine netminder-specific levels of stress and exertion.

“What we’ve heard from trainers and coaches is, it’s changing how they’re looking at load level, and how many games a goalie should play,” Lopes said. “There’s not a lot of prescriptive, predictive [data that says], we need to rest this goalie.”

The data could help teams better determine whether a goalie had a hard night at the office, or an easy one. Some nights, they’re stationary. Others, they’re scrambling.

more plus other hockey topics...

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Playing In The Olympics

from Eric Duhaschek of The Athletic,

Roughly 150 NHLers could be participating in the Olympics.

It means, on the one hand, that any player that doesn’t make his respective Olympic team — or in the case of someone such as the Kings’ Anze Kopitar, hails from a country (Slovenia) that didn’t qualify this time around — is going to get an extended break, to rest and recover, far more time off than they’d traditionally get in a bye week.

The others?

Well, they’ve got to trek halfway around the world, reset their body clocks once on the way over and again on the way back. It places a lot of stress on the top players, who not only play the most minutes most nights for their NHL teams, but will also be faced with the challenge of getting motivationally prepared for the Olympics, coming down from an Olympic high (or low) once they’re over, and then summoning up the emotional energy again for an up-to-two months push in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

It’s a big task and a big ask and it adds a fresh wrinkle to any coaching staff’s mandate — ensuring that the players you rely on at crunch time also have some gas left in the tank when playoffs arrive.

more (paid subscripton) and other opics including a look at the Jack Eichel trade...

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Good News For Legend Of Hockey Fans

TORONTO (November 3, 2021) – The Hockey Hall of Fame is pleased to announce today that they have teamed up with Network Entertainment and TSN to produce a new 10-part series entitled Legends of Hockey: Greatness Calling 2000-20.

Carrying on the proud tradition of the Hockey Hall of Fame’s original award-winning landmark series Legends of Hockey launched in 1996, the upcoming series - Legends of Hockey: Greatness Calling 2000-20 will showcase, in an epic and heartfelt style, the personal stories of the Hockey Hall of Fame's inductees from 2000 to 2020, including hockey greats Mark Messier, Ray Bourque, Brett Hull, Patrick Roy, Joe Sakic, Hayley Wickenheiser, Dominik Hašek, Pavel Bure, Nicklas Lidström, and more.

Continue Reading »

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Gary Bettman Appears To Be Safe For Now

from Scott Stinson of the National Post,

There have already been suggestions that the calls for major reform in the world of professional hockey will not end until Gary Bettman is out of a job.

The argument is simple enough. The NHL commissioner, in responding to the sexual assault scandal involving the Chicago Blackhawks, levied a fine that was less than that handed out to punish salary-cap circumvention. He dismissed suggestions that he should have paid more attention to the stories of sexual abuse in junior hockey, even though it is the main feeder system to the pros. He protected the Chicago ownership even though Kyle Beach was one of their employees. He waved away the inaction of Kevin Cheveldayoff, now the Winnipeg Jets GM, as a reasonable response for a low-ranking employee, as though being the assistant general manager of the Blackhawks meant his job was merely to keep Stan Bowman’s coffee mug topped up. Bettman, 69, has also held the most senior post in professional hockey for almost 30 years. If he doesn’t bear some responsibility for the culture of the sport, then who does?

Calls for a Bettman ouster will only intensify if the Kyle Beach story ends up being one of many. Already on Tuesday, the wife of a former coach in the Pittsburgh Penguins organization announced that she would be suing that team for covering up her allegation of sexual assault against another minor-league coach in 2018. (The Penguins say action was taken immediately.) If this becomes a cascade of allegations involving hockey employees — as has happened in other industries once the cone of silence was first pierced — then a total housecleaning will become inevitable.

But short of that, Bettman is on sturdier ground than many critics would like to admit. I say that as a frequent critic. The reasons to dislike the job he has done are many and varied, from the league’s work stoppages to its player-safety record to the lack of support for a real women’s league to the fact that the Arizona Coyotes exist while the Quebec Nordiques do not.

continued

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Once Again The Game On The Ice Is On The Back Burner

There have been instances in the past that have taken away the product on the ice from our focus but the Kyle Beach problem may be too important that the NHL may not recover from it until drastic changes are made.

As always, I will continue post articles on this topic while trying to keep you with all the action the players provide us.

It is time for changes to be made at the NHL and NHLPA level, there was too much hidden or spinning for the game to recover without these changes.

KK will not become a constant stream of reporting on the Kyle Beach problem but will post what I believe to be newsworthy.

My focus is on the game played on the ice, not all the other issues that remain today but it is becoming an issue when lead news is off the ice, something I am very careful with when posting.

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Time To Say Goodbye To Gary Bettman

from Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star,

It is time for NHL commissioner Gary Bettman to retire.

I mean this with the utmost respect, because I’ve come to respect and I think understand Bettman as a human being in my dealings with him over the years.

But for the love of the game of hockey, it is time for a new voice and fresh approach at the very top.

The commissioner of the NHL needs to be able read the room. I don’t mean a room filled with billionaires and their hockey-playing toys. Bettman has done the latter very well during his now 29-year tenure.

The commissioner — he, she or they — need to read the room at large. Times have changed. Expectations have changed. Society demands better. And society won’t be hockey fans unless society can trust hockey.

If it wasn’t obvious before — George Floyd, Akim Aliu, Logan Mailloux — that the NHL is always a day late and a dollar short on whatever the socially pressing issue of the day is, then Bettman’s handling Kyle Beach situation could well be the hill he dies on.

continued

This is not the first time in recent days where media members are suggesting this.

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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