Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Bert, Cleary, Homer, Maltby

Headed to the airplane to the state that hockey forgot, the state of the first round (as predicted) playoff evictees.  Be back just in time for warm beer in front of the tv.  Before I go, the four keys to tonite can be found in the title of this post…and the amount of frustration they can cause Nabokov.

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Hypocritical Chief

And on the same day I bragged that I never delete comments, I just deleted 31 of them. We're in the middle of a damn good series and the converation has degenerated to garbage, and I'll take responsibility for starting it. Shark fans: you're welcome to stay and your commentary is welcome, although I reserve the right to refer to you all as little girls. Wing fans: same goes for you, except for Gramps. I like to keep Pinhead on my good side. And no, this is not the onset of A2Y censorship so don't get all wadded up if I deleted your stuff. I was an equal opportunity deleter and I doubt it will happen again.

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Wing Award Finalists

Uncle Mike Lack of Jack Adams got the shaft, in my opinion; as I think he should have at least been considered. But two Wings (stop reading if your memory takes you back to last year) are finalists again. JAMES NORRIS MEMORIAL TROPHY (outstanding defenseman): Nicklas Lidstrom, Red Wings; Scott Niedermayer, Ducks; Chris Pronger, Ducks. LADY BYNG MEMORIAL TROPHY (sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct): Pavel Datsyuk, Red Wings; Joe Sakic, Avalanche; Martin St. Louis, Lightning. This is Lidstrom's 8th time as a Norris finalist in the last 9 years. More

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Trouble

You’re going to see this a lot today: “A tale of two…”  Insert the key phrase there.  You’ll see that because it’s easy and it’s obvious.  And that, kids, is how our diggers roll.  The first period?  All the ills that had plagued the Wings to begin Games 1 and 2 were gone.  Speed. Danger.  Aggression?  Present.  Shots from the point? Getting through.  Open space in the neutral zone?  Available.  A lead?  Thank you.

But… 

Continue Reading »

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Newsflash:  R. Lang Looks Less Crappy Than Usual

0037 EST: Wings played their best period of the series, then got dominated physically.  Shots were even at 7 apiece in the second, and that amazed me.  If I’d had to guess I would have said there was a ten or eleven shot difference.  Pathetic calls on Lang’s “interference” and Bertuzzi’s trip.  Referees didn’t decide this one, though.  Size and strength in the corners decided it.

2345 EST:  Anyone but me notice that, once again, the TSN commentators (Cuthbert and Healy) are pretty blatant about who they’d like to see win this series?  Whatever.  Bad, bad penalty from Bertuzzi. 

2250 EST:  Somewhere, in a dark place, underneath a billowy sweater worn by an insane Czech goalie, a hockey puck crossed a goal line. 

No it didn’t, because the cameras say so.  Nice. 

Andres Lilja:  9 playoff games.  2 PIM.  Unbelievable. 

Energy. A shot and a nice feed all on his first shift.  Lang’s work is probably done for the evening, but an encouraging start.

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Bell Out, Pavelski In For Sharks

George Sipple reports this evening that San Jose’s Mark Bell’s injuries will force him to the press box tonite in favor of Joe Pavelski.

Bell had been out with a groin injury in Game 1, then returned to the lineup in Game 2 on Saturday. In three playoff games, Bell is minus-2 with no points. In four playoff games, Pavelski was plus-2 with one goal.

“At this point in the year, you can’t wait for someone to get going,” Wilson said. “He’s had hip and groin problems, back problems.

 

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Question Everything…Especially Implosions

Woops.  Remember Legace-confidante Andy Strickland?  Sure you do.  Now’s a good time to tell you that for a little while in January, it looked like young Andy was going to avail himself to us, perhaps to further address his original claim that the Wings would “implode by Christmas.”

For some reason, he didn’t feel compelled to take advantage of that opportunity.

But hey…if you’re not doing anything around 11am EST tomorrow…

I will be taping the show at 10:00 central time Tuesday Morning. Feel free to call the show and ask a question or give a comment at 1-800-491-1380 or 314-969-1380 locally in St. Louis.

You can also e-mail the show and I will read the question on the air.

The address is strickland.andy@gmail.com

 

 

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Homer’s Good To Go

Paul just posted over at KK Hockey that Tomas Holmstrom has been cleared to play and will be flying out to San Jose today and is likely for Game 4. Yes, the obvious questions are: when does the flight leave, and if he's cleared, can he play tonite? Bruce MacLeod with a bit more, and news that Zetterberg practiced for the first time in a week this morning. Helene St. James says it's definite that Holmstrom will NOT be playing tonite. Last blog entry from Ted Kulfan? 27 April.

Babcock said definitely no Holmstrom (eye) and Lebda (ankle) for Game 2.
Easy Ted. Don't pull a muscle.

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Datsyuk’s Goal The Catalyst?

According to the Stats NHL Blog, the Wings’ two-goal comeback on Saturday was a 2007 rarity.

John Kreisler noted how getting a two-goal lead meant so much in the postseason. He reported that in the first 47 playoff games this spring, teams taking a lead of two goals or more were 34-0.

According to Kreisler, there were 126 regular-season games—better than one in every 10 played—in which teams trailed by two or more goals and won. On two dates (March 1 and April 7), it happened five times apiece.

Read more here, including the suggestion that if the Wings return the Cup to its rightful home in Hockeytown, Datsyuk’s game winner could very well be the goal that will have set the stage.

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Fitzpatrick Breaks Attendance-Gate Wide Open

Now, we bring you the return of Jamie Fitzpatrick. Jamie, you may recall was mentioned several months ago after his misguided attack on the fans of Edmonton—a fan base, I might add, that proved to be worthy, respectable adversaries even as they were Punching Us In The Face last spring.

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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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