The Edmonton Arena negotiations took a strange turn last week as a last-minute meeting changed the entire landscape of the talks and especially the Katz-imposed deadlines. Paula Simons breaks down the details.
Katz Group power play scores major concessions from city - Edmonton Journal
And why did the city agree to give the Katz Group these significant concessions? The official answer is because Katz agreed to drop his demand that Northlands sign a non-compete clause, giving the new facility a monopoly on all arena shows.
But Edmonton isn't the only city in the midst of major changes to their hockey arena or the agreements governing the arenas. In Columbus, the City Council and County Commissioners have decided to purchase Nationwide Arena with gambling tax dollars, turning the Blue Jackets home into a publicly-owned facility.
Franklin County Commissioners Preparing For Arena Vote? - The Cannon
After the Columbus City Council unanimously passed the proposal to turn Nationwide into a publicly owned facility, the next step to resolving the arena issues is on the Franklin County Commissioners to approve or deny the measure.
The Tampa Lightning unveiled their newly-completed arena renovations, including tearing out two sections to put in a party deck and giant organ. Lightning owner Jeff Vinik picked up the tab for the entire renovation and has no immediate plans to seek reimbursement from the County.
Tampa Bay Lightning owner: No immediate plans to seek renovation reimbursement - St. Petersburg Times
Jeff Vinik said he has no immediate plans to ask Hillsborough County to reimburse him, not even in part, for the $40 million renovation to the St. Pete Times Forum he is financing. "Not on my horizon," the Lightning owner said Monday. "What matters now is that we did what's right for the community and what's right for the building."
With the debate over public utility versus private enterprise and renovations versus new arena roaring in Edmonton, all sides have new arrows in their quivers - will new examples alter public opinion?
More news after the jump.
Around the league
Larsson looks like the goods - In Lou We Trust
...it's worth highlighting the Devils' 18-year old defenseman. He played 24:59 tonight and a massive 21:16 of it was at even strength. How did he look? Just solid, really. Incredibly composed on the puck, especially on one keep during the Devils' first power play. He was in the right place at the right time for most of the game, too. I'm amazed he's only 18 and he's performing the way he does. I felt his partner Andy Greene was fantastic, especially early on in the game; but Adam Larsson had a very good evening as well. Coaches don't just hand out ice time without thinking the player is worthy of it. The sheer amount of ice time tells me the coaches think very highly of Larsson and that he deserves it. Larsson and Greene had fantastic Corsi numbers, +13 and +11, respectively. Those are excellent values for a defenseman, especially two who played over 20 minutes at even strength. Though, a big reason is that they were usually behind the Elias line.
Devils’ Larsson not ordinary rookie - Red Light District
"On the power play when he holds the puck on the blue line, he looks like a guy who has played 10 years in the league," Clarkson said. "You don’t see many kids come in at that age and quarterback the power play. On a team like this, we’ve got Kovalchuk on one side, Elias and Parise down low. For him it’s probably like ‘Wow, I’m here with these guys?’ He still finds ways to make good plays and be smooth out there."
NHL Realignment: Hockey Should Look To NFL, MLB Model To Solve Problems - SBNation.com
Each division still maintains geographical proximity to ease travel costs. There's still divisional imbalance in income, but with so few teams making up such a large percentage of league income, divisional imbalance is difficult to overcome. Travel distances and conference incomes are balanced, however.
On The Practice Of Signing Players To Contracts A Year Before Their Current Contract Expires - Driving Play
...the thing that's interesting to me is that we're not just seeing star players sign deals a year before their current one expires - 'star' players who've done this recently include Zdeno Chara, Tyler Myers, Chris Pronger, and Marc Savard. We continue to see it even though there are plenty of cautionary tales for both player and team - Marc Savard took his brutal blindside hit from Matt Cooke later in that season, and has only managed to play 25 games under his new deal. It's very likely that Savard will never play again.
Not Selling Jeans and Niclas Bergfors: Judging the Limits of "The Predator Way" - On the Forecheck
There's an obvious analogue to hockey here: the shot. Statistical analysis shows that, in the long haul, the team that shoots the most, not the best, wins. Like the walk in baseball, the shot in hockey carries both an explicit and implicit value. When a batter walks, he forces the pitcher into a deeper count and runs up his pitch count. When a skater shoots, he forces the goalie to make a save, allowing the possibility of rebounds and deflections. Oakland's strategy in Moneyball was not so much to walk a lot, as to not make outs. Until you make the third out, there exists an infinite number of possible runs to be scored that inning. And until you shoot the damn puck, there are zero possible goals coming your way.
The Ecological Fallacy - Brodeur is a Fraud
I found a scholarly name for the tendency to rate goalies on winning teams as better than goalies on losing teams. It's the ecological inference fallacy.
Brule is day-to-day. - The Copper & Blue
The team hasn't said much about the issue since Coach Todd Nelson mentioned Brule had an upper body condition on Wednesday.
Weber sits and learns to be patient - The Buffalo News
Mike Weber waited his turn last season, then became a fixture on the Buffalo Sabres' defense. Now he's back waiting again. It will be much tougher for him to get into the lineup this time.
Why All This Shot Quality Stuff Is A Waste Of Time - Edmonton Journal
His work has caught the eye of observers all over the media landscape, including the Wall Street Journal (h/t Backhand Shelf). Naturally, the results are a little more current – Thomas jumps from 40th in these rankings a year ago to first overall, which is another good indicator that Shuckers’ data isn’t the be-all and end-all of goaltender valuation – but as with Shuckers’ previous paper, there is a key flaw: the data itself.