Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Videos- Born On This Date In 1928

In Floral, Saskatchewan the great Gordie Howe.



Below, an ESPN documentary on #9.

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Dylan Larkin Participated In A Video Conference Call Today

via the NHL PR department,

Click below to watch/download today’s video conference call featuring Zdeno Chara (BOS), Dylan Larkin (DET), John Tavares (TOR) and Brady Tkachuk (OTT):

 Shared screen with speaker view

 Shared screen with gallery view

 Audio only

added 3:07pm, or you can watch mosti of it below...

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The Latest Prospect Rankings

from TSN,

Rimouski Oceanic left wing Alexis Lafreniere has strengthened his hold on the title of hockey’s best prospect, with his 112-point regular season further evidence that he belongs atop the latest edition of Craig’s List ahead of the 2020 NHL Draft.

With leagues around the globe cancelling the remainder of their seasons due to the COVID-19 pandemic, TSN Director of Scouting Craig Button’s latest ranking serves as an end-of-the-season evaluation.

There will be one more Craig’s List before the 2020 Draft, whenever that may be. The NHL has postponed the draft from its original June 26-27 dates in Montreal.

The latest list is heavy on northern talent, with Canadians taking five of the top six spots and 18 of the 31 first-round slots. Lafreniere going first overall would end a drought for Canadian prospects that stretches back to 2015, when the Edmonton Oilers selected Connor McDavid with the first pick.

The shortened season was a stellar one for Lafreniere, who averaged more than two points per game with 35 goals and 77 assists in 52 Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) contests and overcame a knee injury to help Canada win gold at the World Juniors.

continued with a top 103 list...

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Marlowe Stoudamire, A Driving Force Behind ‘Learn, Play, Score’ Dies Due To Coronavirus

from William Douglas of NHL.com,

Marlowe Stoudamire never scored a goal, blocked a shot or logged a minute of ice time in an NHL game. But that didn't stop him from becoming a change agent in the sport.

Stoudamire, a Detroit native, was a driving force in the Detroit Red Wings, NHL and NHL Players' Association launch in February of "Learn, Play, Score," an ambitious $1 million pilot program to bring hockey to more than 30,000 children in the city.

"He never played hockey, but he was always passionate about hockey as a way of bringing communities together," said Kim Davis, NHL Vice President, Social Impact, Growth Initiatives & Legislative Affairs. "He wanted to be the voice of those communities to say that indeed, Detroit is Hockeytown, and there's a rich history of black and brown people playing hockey in the city of Detroit."

Stoudamire's friendly, booming voice was silenced Tuesday, when he died at the age of 43 after contracting the coronavirus. He is survived by his wife, Valencia, and two young children.


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Top 25 Draft Prospects

from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,

Given the draft lottery current rules, the Wings would have an 18.5-percent chance — the best odds — of landing the No. 1 overall pick. Ottawa, though, has its own pick and San Jose's pick, the second and third overall.

The worst the Wings can do is fourth overall....

1. Alexis Lafreniere, Rimouski (QMJHL) left wing, 6-foot-1, 192-pounds — Lafreniere has been projected as the top pick in this draft for almost two to three years. He’s a generational type of player, with few warts in his game. Lafreniere had 112 points (77 assists) in 52 games this season.

2. Quinton Byfield, Sudbury (OHL), C, 6-4, 214 — Teams salivate whenever they see a player with this type of size and skill. Byfield is a tremendous playmaker who can dominate shifts either physically, or by stickhandling through defenders.

3. Tim Stutzle, Mannheim (Germany), LW, 6-0, 165 — The Wings would not be disappointed at all to combine Stutzle with Moritz Seider in the organization for the future. Stutzle isn’t physically big, but he plays big, is extremely competitive, and has the skills to play center in the future.

22 more players...

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Discussing Moritz Seider

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

Seider’s 22 points and .45 points-per-game average ranks second among Griffins defensemen. Overall, he gets high marks from Shawn Horcoff, the team’s director of player development.

“When you draft a guy as high as we drafted Moritz, there are high expectations,” Horcoff said. “We are really happy with where he is at, with where he was at when the league shut down. He was playing 23-plus minutes a night, sometimes 25. His offensive game is really starting to come — you’re starting to see more puck-moving ability, more pucks through to the net. His shot has improved. He is playing much more on the power play and it looks like he’s getting more and more comfortable there.”

Seider, who played in Germany’s top men’s league in 2018-19, has good physicality. He’s big, he can skate, and he has some bite to him. He can move the puck and defend.

“He looks like a player that can play in every situation," Horcoff said, "who is an all-package guy."


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Grand Rapids Griffins Sign Patrick Curry

from Peter J. Wallner of Mlive,

Patrick Curry, who just completed his collegiate career at Boston University, signed a two-year contract with the Grand Rapids Griffins on Thursday.

The 24-year-old forward totaled 79 points (39-40-79), a plus-10 rating and 116 penalty minutes in 141 career games over four seasons with the Terriers.

He was named Hockey East’s Best Defensive Forward as a senior in 2019-20, he established career highs with 32 points and a team-best 19 goals and equaled his career mark with 13 assists in 34 appearances.


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Don’t Expect Changes To The Draft Lottery

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

The decision to postpone the NHL draft scheduled for June 26-27 at the Bell Centre in Montreal didn’t come as a surprise because the league either expects to be playing hockey at that point or be unable to have large crowds in a rink — because the American Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Health Canada haven’t given the green light to hold large gatherings.

There has been idle chatter that if the league does decide to cancel the rest of the regular season and go to the playoffs that the format of the draft lottery may change. A check with a handful of league executives in the last couple of days indicates they don’t expect that to be the case and that the teams with the best odds in the lottery will retain those numbers whenever the league loads the balls into the machine....

“I don’t see any reason to change the format and I’m not sure it would even be given any consideration,” a league executive told this newspaper this week. “If they go straight to the playoffs, a good portion of the season has already been played and those teams at the bottom weren’t really going to gain much ground if the league hadn’t gone on pause.”

The sentiment from league executives I’ve spoken with is, just because the season might end up being shortened, it doesn’t mean you can arbitrarily just change the rules.


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Missing All Of You

As I sit here bored, and slightly terrified, I want to say I miss all of you. The bad jokes, the horrible hockey, but now I'd give my figure skates just to share some time joining in a Live Blog. We all know the seriousness of what we're up against, and, now more than ever we need to try, even if only for a minute, to remember all the good things we share here. Every one of us have something to offer in the way of friendship, a good word, a bad joke, or, if you need to vent. The door is always open, and the Hasek is always open for business. All the best to all 19 of us.....

Lets Go Humanity!!!!!

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Jimmy Howard Would Like To Play Another Year

from Larry Mahoney of the Bangor Daily News,

The National Hockey League season has been a trying one for Jimmy Howard and the Detroit Red Wings. They are last in the league with 39 points as the season remains in limbo after being put on hold as a precaution to deal with the coronavirus.

Howard, who turned 36 on Thursday, has lost the starting job to Jonathan Bernier. The 13-year NHL veteran has a 4.20 goals-against average to go with an .882 save percentage. He hasn’t played since Feb. 27.

“It has been a tough year and it has been for everyone in the organization,” Howard said. “We are going through a rebuilding process and it has been a perfect storm. Everyone has needed to step up and that hasn’t been the case.”

Howard’s contract, which pays him $4 million, is up at the end of the season.

“I want to play another year. I still have game left in me, but I’ll have to wait and see if any other general managers feel the same way,” Howard said. “I know I will have to transition to being a backup goaltender. It is a young man’s game. These young goalies eat, breathe and sleep hockey. It’s fun to watch.”


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About Abel to Yzerman

Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com


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