717367 Winnipeg Jets players give thumbs up to GM Kevin Cheveldayoff's contract extension
717368 Cheveldayoff has Jets on right track: Chipman
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717215 Anaheim Ducks
Ducks owner Samueli committed to a state-of-the-art Honda Center
The owner also says landing an NBA team at Honda won't happen soon, but if the opportunity arises 'but we'll be ready for it.'
By Helene Elliott | September 18, 2013, 8:16 p.m.
Ducks owner Henry Samueli, whose management company operates the Honda Center, said Wednesday he doesn't anticipate bringing an NBA team to the arena as a tenant any time soon but he remains committed to backing his money-losing NHL team and maintaining a state-of-the-art arena.
Samueli and his wife, Susan, bought the Ducks from the Walt Disney Co. in 2005 and have since spent $80 million on arena improvements. That includes upgrading locker rooms to NBA standards and undertaking the $20-million Grand Terrace entertainment project that will open Oct. 10, coinciding with the Ducks' home opener. The Sacramento Kings were the most recent NBA team to flirt with moving to Anaheim but they were sold to a Sacramento group and will remain in that city.
"It's pretty much put to rest from our perspective," Samueli said of adding an NBA tenant. "If an opportunity presents itself we'll look at it but we haven't had any contact with the NBA for quite a while.
"You never give up, but clearly it's not going to happen in the near term. But our goal is to make this building a world-class sports and entertainment venue and if the opportunity presents itself in the future, we'll be ready for it."
The Grand Terrace project includes indoor and outdoor entertainment space, food and drink options, and an expanded team store. "It's just going to elevate the whole fan experience," said Samueli, a co-founder of Broadcom and still board chairman and chief technical officer of the semiconductor company.
Despite the lack of an NBA team and the revenues it would generate, Samueli said he stands behind the Ducks long term. He and his wife paid $75 million for the franchise; it was valued at $192 million by Forbes last November.
"We look at it from a different perspective, Susan and I," he said. "We're not depending on this business to support our family. I have a very successful business in Broadcom, and to us, this is our way of giving back to the community.
"Susan and I are very active in philanthropy, so we already give to lots of nonprofits. So the Ducks are just yet another nonprofit that we give to, I guess."
Samueli said it's too early to determine the financial impact of the NHL's new collective bargaining agreement because last season was shortened to 48 games by the league-imposed lockout. The Ducks became eligible for revenue sharing for the first time, but for only half of a full share.
"It's still more than what we got before. So anything helps," he said. "Clearly it's always a struggle in the Sun Belt markets to make a go of the business, but the new CBA definitely will help."
Samueli also said he likes the new schedule, which will match each team against every other team at least twice, and realignment. The Ducks, Kings, and five other teams will compete in the Pacific Division.
"The first two rounds of the playoffs will be within your division, which means, assuming the Ducks and Kings both make the playoffs, the likelihood of us playing each other is very high, which we've never done before in the playoffs," he said. "That's great for Southern California hockey, having a Ducks-Kings rivalry in the playoffs. There's nothing better, and this realignment definitely will make that a likely possibility."
LA Times: LOADED: 09.19.2013
717216 Anaheim Ducks
Samueli: New CBA could help Ducks' bottom line
By ERIC STEPHENS / ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
Ducks owner Henry Samueli said that the current collective bargaining agreement between NHL owners and the players was needed for more financial stability for his franchise, even as it cost nearly half of the 2012-13 season.
Samueli, who rarely grants interviews, ultimately wants to keep ownership of the Ducks within his family and is hopeful that the new CBA – which allows his team to be eligible to receive revenue sharing for the first time – will trim the annual losses.
The owner prefers to stay in the background but granted a sit-down interview with the Register to cover a wide range of topics. Samueli wouldn't specify how much the team lost last season but previous estimates of double-digit millions each season remain the case.
“They're in the same general ballpark as they have been,” Samueli said. “Again, with the new CBA, there's opportunity for improvement definitely with the adjustment in all the numbers.
“We'll know this year for sure what the impact is. We're optimistic we'll turn the corner and start heading in the other direction.”
Samueli was reportedly seen as one of the “hawks” who pushed for a lengthy NHL lockout, which ultimately lasted 119 days until a deal was reached between the league and the NHL Players’ Association. The cost for hockey fans was a truncated 48-game season, instead of the usual 82 games.
On Wednesday, Samueli clarified where he stood during the messy labor struggle.
“I was always in regular contact with the commissioner,” he said. “We had discussions. My position was, do what you can to help the teams in the bottom half of the league get to profitability.
“That was my goal all along. And the commissioner knew that. He tried to negotiate a CBA that moved in that direction.”
His low profile and residence within the relative anonymity of south Orange County allowed him to avoid being the brunt of criticism for playing a role in the work stoppage.
“I think people understood the challenges,” Samueli said. “We all want to play hockey, That's not the issue. Both sides were eager to get back on the ice. They had to negotiate a deal that was fair for both sides.”
Samueli's long-term goal is to keep the Ducks “forever and pass it on to the kids and keep it in the family.” It appears that could be realized as their books are not bathing in red ink.
“We would like to do that. Absolutely,” he said. “We're just hopeful that the financial situation will correct itself to the point where that will allow us to do that in the long term.”
Samueli acknowledged that the NBA's decision to throw its weight behind efforts to keep the Kings in Sacramento was a setback to his plan of having the Honda Center become a tenant to the relocated team.
The Kings were sold by the Maloof family for $535 million to a group of investors led by technology executive Vivek Ranadive. The group is looking to build a new downtown arena in Sacramento by 2016.
“It certainly was disappointing but understandable,” Samueli said. “Clearly the leagues don't want to relocate franchises. They want to do their utmost to maintain them in the cities they're in.
“I can clearly understand why they remained in Sacramento.”
Samueli also said he isn't getting involved – even as a minority owner – in any effort to bring an NFL team to Los Angeles.
“We've been approached over the years,” he said. “No. It's not something that really interests me.”
Hampus Lindholm had a power-play goal at 14:04 of the third period, lifting the Ducks to a 2-1 victory over the Colorado Avalanche in a exhibition game at Denver.
Devante Smith-Pelly added a power-play goal. The Ducks were 2 for 7 with the man advantage.
John Gibson stopped 18 shots after entering midway through the second period.
Paul Stastny scored for Colorado. Stastny's rebound shot deflected off the stick of Mark Fistric at 13:15 of the first period.
Orange County Register: LOADED: 09.19.2013
717217 Anaheim Ducks
Whicker: Lindblom learning to protect himself at all times
The 19-year-old Ducks defenseman from Sweden adjusts to a smaller stage.
ANAHEIM – Objects in the NHL mirror are closer than they appear.
Article Tab: Jpg“I have to expect the hit to always be coming instead of not expecting it,” says Hampus Lindholm of playing in the NHL. “I can't make a pass and then just stand there and stare at my pass. It's not something I was used to back home.”“I have to expect the hit to always be coming instead of not expecting it,” says Hampus Lindholm of playing in the NHL. “I can't make a pass and then just stand there and stare at my pass. It's not something I was used to back home.”JUSTIN K. ALLER, GETTY IMAGESCHECK OUT OUR SPORTS COLUMNISTS
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Hampus Lindholm is an 19-year-old defenseman whom the Ducks took with the sixth overall pick in the 2012 draft.
Eventually, they think he will orchestrate games, make indisputable decisions, and become chairman of the power play.
Provided he gets there in one piece.
Playing on smaller rinks, Lindholm has been wearing a “hit me” sign throughout practice, and into the first exhibition against Phoenix on Monday night.
“If you make a mistake in this league they are going to punish you pretty hard,” Lindholm said Tuesday. “You can’t make junior mistakes anymore. But in one way it’s easier, because you’re playing with good players.”
Still, General Manager Bob Murray winced a few times when he saw Lindholm forget to pull the pin on the grenade a few times.
Scott Niedermayer, who describes himself now as “the assistant to the assistant coaches,” saw the same thing.
So on Tuesday, when Monday night’s players skated for an hour and 15 minutes, Niedermayer spent a long time talking with Lindholm, by the boards.
The emphasis seemed to be on swiveling his head and body to see the onrushers, and to get rid of the puck before Lindholm picked up a second concussion to match the one he got in the American Hockey League last winter.
“He wants to do so much,” Murray said. “He wants the puck and that’s a good thing. But if you move it up the boards and make smart little passes, you can avoid all that contact. Scotty did that for years. You’d see guys crashing into the boards, right beside him.
“But he’s growing into his body, which is a common thing among the Swedes. If you saw (Detroit’s) Niklas Kronwall at that age, you wouldn’t have ever thought he could play in the NHL.”
Kronwall is now the one who knocks. He brings the type of hammer that Lindholm is learning to avoid.
But the prototype Swedish defenseman is a guy like Nicklas Lidstrom, the seven-time Norris Trophy winner for the Red Wings.
Erik Karlsson won the Norris for Ottawa two seasons ago. Oliver Ekman-Larsson is a coming All-Star for Phoenix.
And when Chicago won its second Stanley Cup, two Swedes made huge plays in their own end for two months: Johnny Oduya and Nik Hjalmarsson.
All had to learn how to cope with tighter corners, tighter lanes, more malice aforethought.
“I have to expect the hit to always be coming instead of not expecting it,” Lindholm said. “I can’t make a pass and then just stand there and stare at my pass. It’s not something I was used to back home.”