Kukla's Korner

The Data Man For The Carolina Hurricanes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Smith of CarolinaHurricanes.com,

In the corner of a shared office on the fourth floor of PNC Arena, you’ll find a small desk with enough surface area to house a laptop and an extra screen, a keyboard, a mouse and a pair of books about statistical analysis. It’s the unassuming – and temporary, as a much more appropriately sized desk is en route – home to one of the more incredibly bright and insightful minds in the hockey analytics community: Eric Tulsky.

Tulsky recently joined the Carolina Hurricanes full-time as a hockey analyst, a role in which he will provide and analyze data to assist the hockey operations department and coaching staff.

“In a really broad, general level, my job is to make use of any data we can get and figure out how we can use it to improve our decision making,” he said. “On a daily basis, my job is to collect, assemble and analyze that information to provide useful input to people.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Morning news: On charitable endeavors, ‘#LGRW,’ Mrazek, ‘question marks’ and McNulty

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Red Wings' players and coach are busy with an off-ice activity today...

But just as single-game tickets went on sale this morning at 10 AM, the Wings released what's being called a "hype video" for the 2015-16 season, and it does the job very well:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

The Most Important Player For The Pittsburgh Penguins Is Kris Letang

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Let’s start with this: For our money, Sidney Crosby is still one of the top two or three best hockey players, if not the best player on the planet. That is a given. And it will not shock us at all that if Crosby wins another scoring title playing with Phil Kessel.

But if the Pittsburgh Penguins, a team strangely adrift since back-to-back trips to the Stanley Cup finals in 2008 and 2009, are going to get back to relevance -- never mind seriously contending for a championship -- then the key is the blue line. And the blue line begins and ends right now with Kris Letang.

For most of last season, Letang and the now departed Paul Martin were the top pairing on a defense that for most of the season was a top six or seven team in goals allowed per game. A late-season swoon that coincided with injuries to their top defensemen saw the Pens finish 10th in goals allowed per game. All in all, not too shabby. Still, the Penguins were ousted in five games in the first round by the New York Rangers, losing all four games by a 2-1 count.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: kris+letang

Team Russia Fined For The Snub OF Canada At The World Championship

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Converting the Swiss Franc to US Dollars would make the fine $85,000.

from IIHF.com,

The Ice Hockey Federation of Russia was fined CHF 80,000 due to an incident that occurred following the end of the gold medal game of the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship in the Czech Republic.

The Russian national team and staff left the ice during the medal ceremony after Canada had won the gold medal game 6-1 and received the medals, but before the national anthem had been played and the flags of the three medal-winning teams were raised.

Supported by video footage of the ceremony, the Deciding Panel of the IIHF Disciplinary Board ascertained that the Russian team captain had discussions with team staff members, after which he talked to his teammates, at the same time moving his head towards the open gate; the gate had been open since the start of the ceremony. The majority of the players and the staff members left the ice immediately following the Canadian Players receiving their medals while a few players remained, eventually leaving the ice themselves a little later. 

continued

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: team+russia

More Pressure From The Columbus Blue Jackets

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rob Mixer of BlueJackets.com,

A year ago at this time, the word was “faster.”

“We want to play faster,” Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards said heading into the 2014-15 campaign. “And we need to play faster.”

It pertained to quicker thinking on the ice, quicker puck decisions and a variety of other factors that enabled the Blue Jackets to dictate the pace of the game and force their opponents to react. After this past season, Richards said he felt the team played faster, but thought they could take it to another level.

This year, he wants his players to think a little differently – he wants them to think about pressure. But not the external brand of pressure.

“We're going to use that word a lot," Richards told BlueJackets.com. "I think if you’re playing hard and pressuring the puck, then you’re playing faster already. When you have the depth that we have here, you should play with more pressure and play a faster game because you’re able to get good rest in between shifts, and that allows you to maintain a high level of play and a high level of speed in your team game.

“We’ve got great depth right now. This will be my fifth year in the organization, and I don’t remember ever having this type of depth. It’s a credit to the team and everyone upstairs, as far as drafting, restocking the cupboards with some young talent.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Status Quo For The Nashville Predators

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Robby Stanley at NHL.com,

Nashville added center Cody Hodgson and forward Steve Moses, whose 36 goals led the Kontinental Hockey League last season. Hodgson and Moses likely will start the season on the third line, which did not produce much offense last season. Young forwards Kevin Fiala and Austin Watson will have a chance to make the roster and compete for spots on the third or fourth lines.

Nashville's core remains the same. Weber and Josi will eat up a lot of minutes on defense; Forsberg and James Neal (23 goals in 67 games) will be the two main scoring options; and Rinne should play 60-65 games.

Secondary scoring will be key; forwards Colin Wilson (20 goals, 22 assists) and Craig Smith (23 goals, 21 assists) were productive on the second line. Each signed a long-term contract in July (Wilson, four years, $15.75 million; Smith, five years, $21.25 million).

"We improved the team, first of all, by keeping the team together," Poile said. "There has been so many changes in the last couple years, including leading into last year. I think we needed a little bit more stability than we've had the previous years. The previous years, we didn't win, we didn't make the playoffs, [and] we needed to make some changes."

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

‘Three Things’: a charitable Tweet, Datsyuk’s ‘numbers’ and a prospect preseason score

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

Within the next two weeks, the hockey news cycle will begin to ramp up with daily practice reports and news from prospects junior teams' training camps, but for the present moment, things remain relatively quiet.

1. The Joe Kocur Foundation Tweeted that its inspiration has good taste in goalies--though one Spencer Hale's favorite goaltender wasn't in attendance for Saturday's charity softball games...

2. DetroitRedWings.com's Bill Roose examines Pavel Datsyuk's 2014-15 season on a statistical basis, and it's not surprising that even an injury-hampered Datsyuk's "numbers" are of the superlative variety:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Christian Ehrhoff Agrees To A One-Year Deal With The Los Angeles Kings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

added 1:21pm,

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: christian+ehrhoff

Being Sidney Crosby

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,

Troy and Trina Crosby sat side-by-side on the same blue couch they've owned for more than a decade. Cards celebrating their son's recent birthday were displayed on the mantle. Photos of their hockey-playing children framed the room.

Now an empty nester and looking every bit the part in capri lounge pants, bare feet and a pair of glasses pushed above her forehead, Trina Crosby seemed genuinely surprised she has spent about one-fifth of her life as the mother of an NHL superstar.

“I think for some people it will always be ‘Sid the Kid,' ” she said. “But it doesn't really stick as much as it used to.”

Ten years into his career, Penguins captain Sidney Crosby is no longer a kid. He's a mature 28, celebrating his birthday on the final day of his first hockey camp for kids held to much acclaim in his hometown, at his home rink.

Crosby also is the proud owner of college credits for a World War II history course he completed online last season. He's a philanthropist and has started thinking about his legacy outside of hockey, something he hopes to shape through charity and his foundation.

No longer Mario Lemieux's tenant, Crosby is a homeowner twice over, including lakefront property in rural Nova Scotia that he showed off recently to a Trib Total Media reporter and photographer.

Yet Crosby, the NHL's top earner who pulled in about $17 million last season in salary, endorsements and memorabilia, remains most comfortable in sandals or sneakers, athletic gear and a cap.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sidney+crosby

A Few Hockey Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

- Not sure why it makes sense for the Leafs to open training camp in Halifax. With a new GM and a new coach, I would have kept my training camp at home and focus on the new beginning ... Oh, to be a fly on the wall when Lou Lamoriello addresses the Leafs for the very first time.

- For those wondering, Mrs. Daryl Sydor was home in Canada when her husband allegedly drove their 12-year-old to hockey while way over the legal drinking limit. The suspicion here: His NHL career is over.

- Almost every time Connor McDavid steps on the ice with NHL players who haven’t seen him before, the reaction is the same: I knew he was good. I didn’t know he was that good ... Still hate the fact that McDavid’s career begins in the Western Conference and Jack Eichel’s begins in the East. They may never meet in a playoff series, just like Sidney Crosby has never had a playoff series against Jonathan Toews ... I’m starting to think my original pick for McDavid — 70 pts on 18 goals and 52 assists as a rookie might be a bit off. I may be low on goals, high on assists.

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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