Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

January Could Mean Division

If you're looking for a month that could decide the Central, January just may be it. Bubba plays thirteen times. 8 of those games are against St. Louis, Chicago and Columbus. Now, granted, that's not the cakewalk it was last year...except St. Louis, which may be even worse. Three games against legitimate playoff teams: Anaheim, Calgary, Detroit. You could easily expect a 20 point month from Bubba, particularly with a healthy Vokoun. The Wings? A five-game West Coast swing through LA, Anaheim, San Jose, Denver and Phoenix. Montreal at home, Bubba at home, 'dique at home. 14 games and asking for 20 points might be greedy. The 4 games in March against Nashville looked key when the schedule came out. Let's hope they mean something, because the difference between the two and five seeds may be greater this year than any in recent history. For instance, would you rather see Round 1 start today in Detroit against Minnesota, or tomorrow at 10:30 in San Jose?

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Christmas Deep Digging

Updated 1156 CST to include Bruce MacLeod’s story on Nik Kronwall.

First, and most importantly, I amazingly succeeded.  A 38-year old man should be smart enough to avoid buying gifts like purses for their wives.  Why? Because that gender is so frustratingly picky about stuff like that…it’s just a losing proposition to attempt that kind of purchase.  But I did…and she claims she likes it.  I’ll be monitoring that situation closely.

On to your Wings, as brought to you by our erstwhile DD’s.

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12/24 Current Events

What happens when a hockey-dumb Detroit columnist spews a few sentences about a topic he should be avoiding at all costs? In some cases, ridicule from yours truly...well, in all cases...a story shelf life of about an hour, followed by crickets. Not this time. A few days ago we pointed you to Drew Sharp's manifesto on the ills of the NHL. This line in particular prompted some quality conversation. Sharp/Free Press

The NHL has made several missteps over the last two years. But the biggest mistake is that Bettman didn't do whatever it took to renew the NHL's relationship with ESPN after the lockout -- even if it meant paying the network for a limited schedule.

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Around the Christmas Blogosphere

A Christmas Eve spin around the hockey sphere.  You should know that as I bring you this hearth-warming holiday edition, I do so to the sounds of the Beatles “Love” album.  If you’re a Beatles fan, and you haven’t heard this thing…get it.  Download it, pirate it, buy it, borrow or steal it. 

We begin with Jes Golbez, a true poet.

Joe Thornton was nestled all snug in his bed
While visions of Sudafed danced in his head.
And Rolston in his ‘kerchief, and Walz in his cap
Had just settled down and started playing the trap,

When out on the ice arose such a clatter…
Could it be that Jeff O’Neill possibly got fatter?
Away to ice, JFJ went like a flash,
and said “I can’t believe I paid 2 milion for this trash”

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Overtime Should Be Banned; Sorrow By The Numbers

Oh, I don't mean for the entire league. Just the Wings. It's not fun anymore. My children start to cry when there's a tie at the end of regulation. I don't know if that's because they know the Wings are going to lose (errr, only earn one point) or because they know I'll force them to watch five more minutes of hockey instead of Squarepants or even sleep. I'd like to tell you my daughters are becoming Wing fanatics...but it's been a tough sell. Yes, I'm stalling.

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Make Way For Gloveside

If you haven't checked out the newest Wings blog, Gloveside...do so now. These guys are funny and that site is improving every week. Their latest addition? The Dunk Tank, where JD or Brennan give you the chance to bash the Wings' most recent opposition. image I'm guessing that January 9th may be a very special day at Gloveside.

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Same Old Story: Hasek and Cleary

I'm back in Tennessee for the weekend. Just crossing into this state seems to slow my brain down. There's an all-star injustice brewing and it has nothing to do with Rory Fitzpatrick. Unless, of course, Fitzpatrick is voted in as a starting goalie...which isn't out of the realm of possibility at this point. Dominik Hasek, not even listed on Little Gary's ballot, has played as well as any goalie in the league up to this point. And, no longer is he the product of just a stingy defense. Now he's becoming the difference.

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Shots Across The Bow From Minny

I guess three games against the Wings has at least one Minnesota blogger feeling frisky.

What has happened to the self-proclaimed Hockeytown USA? Every time I tune into a Wings game I see scores of empty seats, many near ice level. Maybe everyone's using the restrooms or something. Or maybe the charm of having a winning hockey team has worn off a bit. Or it could be bad traffic. Or maybe, just maybe, Detroit isn't the hockey hotbed it claims to be.
Every time you tune into a Wing game? Don't you mean every time you read a Detroit paper on game day? image Yeah, that's today's Free Press. Pure coincidence, I'm sure.

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Thorne:  Hasek A Gift Partially Unwrapped

Via USA Today,

The Wings figured they could play half a year with him and if it didn’t work, there would be an available goaltender on the trade block.

Open this package halfway, because Hasek knew what the deal was. The first half of the season was a “prove us wrong” set. Now that he is No. 1, Detroit has to hope his first half performance will last all season long.

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Dave At Gorilla Crouch Is A Genius

Why? You know the answer. You know my definition of "genius." Anyone who thinks like me is, well, a genius. I opened up all the Wing blogs in separate windows this morning, with the intent of taking you on a tour of the Wingsphereoblogs. But found Dave had beaten me to the punch. Have at it. Good stuff.

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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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