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Old 07-16-2008, 05:05 PM
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Default Oren Koules/Len Barrie

We needed a thread dedicated to the new owners since these ones are actually in the media and give 2 poops about their team and the local community. My pal told me OK was actually speaking with the staff, like even low on the food chain staff. She was so stoked to actually talk to the owner and says in person seems to be a good guy (but she says the same about me So take it as you will!)

The more time goes on, and the more that hits the local media on these guys, the more I'm starting to really like Hollywood and Chainsaw Charlie. (Sorry Sontos!) But it's things like this that really make me smile:


Here's the article on the above picture.


And this little bit from EE today:

Quote:
Had the chance to run out to the Ice Sports Forum in Brandon this morning to check out the action. I had to see Oren Koules and Len Barrie lace up a pair of skates and hit the ice. I mean, what other owners in hockey - or just about any other sport - would jump out there and participate in an activity like that, so I had to check it out. I have to say, I was impressed. Koules and Barrie were joking at the town hall meeting on Tuesday that they went out and signed second line forwards because they didn’t want Steven Stamkos heading out on the ice having to do it all on their own, what did they want Barrie and Koules skating on his wings? Koules looked like he could still lace ‘em up, he’s a good skater. I think he could probably notch a handful of goals if he decided to sign himself to a new contract
I'm not saying the juror is still out on them, as it still is. But I'm willing to give them a chance and see how this season goes and how Melrose does. They very well maybe the best thing that's happened to the Lightning since the Cup.

Last edited by jaydeedub; 07-16-2008 at 05:09 PM.
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Old 07-16-2008, 06:00 PM
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I was really impressed with Oren during the town hall meeting. It's going to be so weird to have accessible, visible ownership for once and hearing actual hockey talk from them throughout the year instead of just the annual whine for tax breaks or lament over monetary losses (which I wonder if OK Hockey will still subject us to).

Len was pretty much what I figured after reading that initial article Chad linked us to and kind of came across as more of the "bad cop" to Oren's "good cop" image. Perhaps he will be the one to press the financial matters.
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Old 07-16-2008, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by jaydeedub View Post
The more time goes on, and the more that hits the local media on these guys, the more I'm starting to really like Hollywood and Chainsaw Charlie. (Sorry Sontos!)
For the record let me just say I never said I don't like the guys (and no I don't need to be nitpicked at about that). Just because I'm not overwhelmed with enthusiasm for every move they make doesn't mean I don't like them. They're better than Balsillie that's for sure, and they certainly talk a good game. I've been called worse, but it's SoTNos.

To end on a positive note, I'm glad Erlendsson expanded a bit on something that was mentioned last night:
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Koules spoke today about a meeting he will he holding with members from USA Hockey about doing more to get out in the youth hockey community with a grassroots approach. He mentioned the number of youth players now coming out of the Los Angeles area who are near the top of their birth years in regards to USA Hockey. I can see this happening here, but there needs to be more rinks and it has to be more accessible to kids.
I think it's great that they want to work on expanding local youth hockey. Though it'll take some time (look how long Pittsburgh/LA have had teams & it's only now there are players coming out of those areas), I look forward to the day when there are players drafted from FL who grew up playing in FL!
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Old 07-16-2008, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Sotnos View Post
I've been called worse, but it's SoTNos.
Hahah! Minor typo, at least I didn't really screw up and write SNOTos!

I'm just really thrilled the community aspects they're taking with the hockey camps and getting the "word" out more to the locals. I'm sure this is just things to come with these guys. It's really getting me pumped up. Makes me wonder what the home opener is going to be like on the 11th.
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Old 07-17-2008, 07:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sotnos View Post
On a positive note, I'm glad Erlendsson expanded a bit on something that was me I think it's great that they want to work on expanding local youth hockey. Though it'll take some time (look how long Pittsburgh/LA have had teams & it's only now there are players coming out of those areas), I look forward to the day when there are players drafted from FL who grew up playing in FL!
I know that's what Esposito had in mind when he started building the Lightning. I don't think there's anyone near that level yet, but we've had a few players out of Brandon go up north to play in AAA and some smaller colleges. There's plenty of travel teams from this area that compete and succeed at the national level as well. The Gulf Coast Flames peewee team won a National Championship out of Ellenton this past year.
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Old 07-17-2008, 09:59 AM
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Video report on the front page of http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/ about all the changes in Tampa by OK/LB this offseason.
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Old 07-17-2008, 03:05 PM
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I haven't seen any chat on the radio/TV broadcast teams aside from some idle speculation here a while back. Any word on if they'll all be retained?
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Old 07-17-2008, 06:22 PM
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I haven't seen any chat on the radio/TV broadcast teams aside from some idle speculation here a while back. Any word on if they'll all be retained?
No, but again I'm not sure whose employees they are and I don't think anyone's clarified that. No doubt the team has major input, but I think Rick & Chief at least might be Sunsports employees.
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Old 07-17-2008, 09:08 PM
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We've seen Rick twice, at least, since the change and Dave once. So if they were moving on, I would think that they would be using this time to introduce the new team. The chief is probably ok, not as sure about Espo.
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Old 07-17-2008, 09:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Great Zo View Post
I haven't seen any chat on the radio/TV broadcast teams aside from some idle speculation here a while back. Any word on if they'll all be retained?
I had asked this question earlier and did some research. Chief and Rick are in fact Sun Sports employees so while they work closely with the Bolts they are not technically employees of the Lightning.

As for Miskin and Espo, they are Bolt employees.

Therefore, IMO if anyone is likely to go it will be Miskin. He was a Feaster hire OK/LB may know someone they always wanted to be their radio voice. I am NOT saying that for sure Miskin is gone or that I want him gone, I am just saying Miskin of them all job is the most tenuous.
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