Kukla's Korner

Tocchet Wants A Win

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Tampa Tribune,

Tocchet is not necessarily interested in seeing some form of retribution against Ovechkin. He wants a far sweeter form of revenge.

A victory.

“That’s something where you’d like to see your players react,” he said. “But reacting is playing and beating Washington by playing abrasive, it’s not being stupid.”

Tocchet says he wants to win the game so badly, he might resort to chopping his bench down to ridiculous levels.

“I would think guys would be ready to play that game. I’ll go with two lines if there are some guys who aren’t ready to play,” he said. “Right now we’re evaluating our players, and that will be a big part of our evaluation.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Rangers Can’t Afford Any More Errors

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stan Fischler of Game

On, Sidney, oh, Sidney Crosby, what pain might ye inflict on the Rangers?

You, too, Evgeni Malkin.

Then again, perhaps the Penguins are precisely the birds the Blueshirts require on Saturday afternoon after another species — this one is the kind that flies, called Thrashers — ruined the Rangers in a 5-4 Shootout that made Phillips Arena look more like a cuckoo’s nest on Thursday night.

The Penguin is a bigger bird than a Thrasher and, perhaps, such a foe is precisely what New York needs after blowing a 4-1 lead to an Atlanta team that looked all but extinct nearly two-thirds through the game.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Flames Not Battling Enough

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Vicki Hall of the Calgary Herald,

First, the Pittsburgh Penguins beat them 2-0. Then, on Thursday, the Columbus Blue Jackets blanked them 5-0.

“It’s frustrating to get embarrassed like that,” spat defenceman Adrian Aucoin. “Tonight in particular. We lost every battle. Power play. Penalty kill. Even strength.

“We just didn’t make the easy plays. We didn’t play as five-man units out there. They really exploited us for it.”

Fellow defenceman Robyn Regehr offered up a similar assessment.

“We got out played in every area tonight,” he said. “It comes down to work. They out-played us on the penalty kill. The power play. Even strength.

“We’re just losing way too many battles. One –on-ones. In front of the net. Everywhere.”

read on

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

Tom Hicks Becoming An Overly Involved Owner

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

I have long maintained that the best way to build a successful NHL franchise is to hire the best hockey person you can find to run things and then get out of the way and let him run things.  NHL owners are not ideal GMs.  They generally lack the required skill set.

Tom Hicks, the Dallas Stars owner, seemed to understand this.  He had kept Bob Gainey on as his general manager and let Gainey run things.  That worked and the Dallas Stars won the 1999 Stanley Cup.  However Hicks has stopped following that path with the Dallas Stars and it is beginning to affect them in the standings and likely to get worse in the future.

The biggest problem with the way the Dallas Stars are run is that they don’t have one general manager.  They have two.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

A Different Manny Fernandez

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Brothers of the Pioneer Press,

Manny Fernandez looked like he’d seen a ghost.

Clearly trying to put all things Minnesota behind him, Fernandez appeared stunned when a reporter from St. Paul walked up to him the other day in Ristuccia Arena, where the Boston Bruins practice.

You could almost see the wheels turning. Did he mix up the next opponent? Weren’t the Bruins scheduled to play the Devils the next afternoon?

At times cordial and at times a smoldering volcano during his six seasons with the Wild, Fernandez seems to have turned over a new leaf with the Boston Bruins. After a moment, he extended his hand, peeled off his big goalie pads and said he’d be happy to talk a little puck.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: manny+fernandez

Playoff Points

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Marc Crawford of Blogs and Columns at CBC,

The great sportswriter from the Detroit Free Press, Mitch Albom, wrote the book titled The Five People You Meet in Heaven. It’s a wonderful story about how the people you meet are influenced by your life and it gives meaning to the significance of the lives we all lead.

As we head into the afterlife known as the NHL post-season, I would like to share with you the five people who hold a special place in my version of playoff heaven.

To begin, I must explain my belief that a team’s playoff success usually requires, to some degree, five elements in order to win the Stanley Cup. These include a great goaltender, a prolific scorer, an outstanding offensive defenceman, a checking line or shut down defensive pair, and, last but not least, an unlikely scoring hero.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Playoff Primer For Chicago Fans

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Neil Hayes of the Chicago Sun-Times reminds Chicago fans what the playoffs are like…

When it comes to the excitement level between the regular season and the playoffs, few sports compare to hockey, which remains primarily an arena sport. On any given night, in most NHL cities, those inside the arena make up a significant percentage of that team’s fans. That means ratings are never as high as league and team executives would like. It also means an electrifying playoff atmosphere for those who don’t remember.

These Blackhawks are capable of winning a series or two, which will only ratchet up the intensity. Can they topple the Sharks or Red Wings, the two dominant teams in the Western Conference? Probably not. But the Hawks have won two straight against San Jose, giving them a puncher’s chance.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

These Hits Don’t Tickle

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NHL players discuss being hit.

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Media, NHL Video, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

NHL Players “Going Green”

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From the NHLPA:

NHL players are “going green” in a big way, due in part to the success of the NHLPA Carbon Neutral Challenge program. Players are taking more action in their own lives to reduce their environmental footprint. With over 420 NHLPA members signing up for the second year of the program, the players continue to show leadership on the environment.

“I’m very proud that we’ve offset more than 4,200 tonnes of carbon emissions this season, which is like taking 840 cars off the road for a year,” said Andrew Ference, the Boston Bruins’ defenseman who initiated the NHLPA Carbon Neutral Challenge. “But best of all, I’m hearing of more and more players in the dressing rooms talking about ‘going green’.”

continued…

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: andrew+ference, environmentalism, nhlpa

Bertuzzi Expected Back Tonight

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

According to Vicki Hall of Flames Insider, Todd Bertuzzi will be in the lineup tonight when the Flames meet the Blue Jackets.

“It feels pretty good,” Bertuzzi said, slipping the brace off his left leg. “I’ve practised a couple of times pretty hard, and I’m no worse for wear.

“Looking forward to getting back in,”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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