Kukla's Korner

When Steve Sullivan Last Played…

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,

On the fateful night of Feb. 22, 2007, Sullivan, during a contest against the Montreal Canadiens, felt every muscle in his back seize up, an ailment that would keep him out of action for almost two years.

At that time:

- Marian Hossa was an Atlanta Thrasher, Scott Gomez a New Jersey Devil, Chris Drury a Buffalo Sabre and Mats Sundin a Toronto Maple Leaf.

- The Nashville goalies were Tomas Vokoun and Chris Mason. Vokoun now is a Florida Panther while Mason plays for the St. Louis Blues.

- Brian Burke was en route to leading the Anaheim Ducks to a Stanley Cup while then-Vancouver Canucks GM David Nonis was being complimented for his off-season acquisition, Roberto Luongo. Today, Burke and Nonis are in charge of rebuilding the bumbling Leafs.

- The Ottawa Senators were on their way to a berth in the final, not scraping the bottom of the NHL barrel.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: steve+sullivan

Tops Stars Need To Perform Better

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tracey Myers of the Star-Telegram,

The Dallas Stars’ loss in Detroit was embarrassing and ugly. That’s frustrating enough to coach Dave Tippett; but worse was how some of the Stars’ top stars played. That, for him, was unacceptable….

“The difference between Detroit’s top players and our top players wasn’t even close,” Tippett said on Friday, which the Stars spent meeting about Thursday’s debacle.

Tippett compared the Stars centers’ outings to that of Detroit centers Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg, who each finished with a goal and an assist.

“Datsyuk and Zetterberg, what they did in the game and what Ribeiro and Richards did, it’s just a ways to go,” he said. “It’s very disturbing. The people you rely on to make a difference just don’t.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Not A Good Night For Edmonton

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Robert Tychkowski of the Edmonton Sun,

First Sheldon Souray left the game in the second period and didn’t return for the third. The Oilers would only describe it as an upper body injury. Edmonton’s best defenceman joins their best forward, Ales Hemsky, in the training room.

Then as the Oilers were out looking for bear in the third period, Zack Stortini fell awkwardly to the ice in a fight with Brad Staubitz and appeared to suffer a badly broken leg.

The video replay, which resembled Joe Theismann’s famous injury, brought groans of horror from the crowd at Rexall Place, and was only shown once.

more and watch the high quality video below…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: zack+stortini

Grabovski vs. Kostitsyn

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette,

The 24-year-old Belarus-raised native of Potsdam, East Germany, was suspended an automatic three games yesterday by the NHL for abuse of an official. Grabovski tussled with linesman Scott Cherrey in his overzealous effort to get at Canadiens’ Sergei Kostitsyn.

The players never managed to dance, despite their best efforts, and both were handed misconducts for their vigorous efforts. Grabovski was given a game misconduct as a bonus.

There is bad blood between these two, litres of it. Apparently it has to do with Kostitsyn’s distaste for things Grabovski is alleged to have said about himself and his brother, Andrei, to Russia’s sensation-seeking sports media.

(Ask Alex Kovalev about that.) But a feud needn’t be based on anything, of course, and it seems that before theirs is done, these two are bound to change their names to Hatfield and McCoy.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikhail+grabovski, sergei+kostitsyn

Phaneuf Hasn’t Reached The Next Level

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Steve MacFarlane of the Calgary Sun,

From Norris Trophy finalist to all-star game absentee.

That’s not exactly the career path envisioned for Calgary Flames defenceman Dion Phaneuf.

People think he’s taken a step back this season.

Really, he just hasn’t taken a step forward….

His minus-8 rating is a bigger concern than the paltry goal total. The only other active Flames defenceman who has a negative plus-minus is Adrian Aucoin at negative one. Some are calling Phaneuf the Tony Romo of the NHL.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dion+phaneuf

No Offense, But No Offense

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Russo of the Star-Tribune,

Other than Owen Nolan, it’s now the Wild’s minute-munching forwards who are offering no offense.

Mikko Koivu has one goal and seven assists in the past 15 games. Andrew Brunette has one goal and three assists in the past 16. Pierre-Marc Bouchard has two goals and six assists in the past 17. Eric Belanger has one goal and four assists in his past 15. Antti Miettinen has one goal and two assists in the past 13.

It’s no wonder that in the Wild’s past 16 games, it has scored 27 goals (1.68 a game). In the 30-team NHL, it ranks 29th with 2.38 goals per game.

“The top guys, sometimes they do [squeeze their sticks], but other times—a lot of times—it’s execution that has to be better,” coach Jacques Lemaire said. “We’ve got to work on execution—hitting the net or feeding the right guy so we can get that goal.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Nice Placement

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Got this from Puck Daddy.

It made me so happy that I woke my family so we could all start our Saturday on the same joyful foot.

Ready?

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Young Stars Game

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

I would have liked to make a prediction on which players would make the Young Stars roster, but I was unable to guess how many players would make up the roster this year.  In the six years that the game has been played it has been subject to many format changes.  Two years ago, the Young Stars Game had 12 man rosters and was East Conference vs. West Conference.  Last year, they used eight man rosters with no Young Star goalies (the All Star Game goalies were used) and played East vs. West Conference.  This year it has 10 man rosters, with Young Star goalies again and is played rookies against sophomore (2nd year) players. 

It is impossible to build up a tradition behind the game when it undergoes a format change annually.  Anything that changes format as frequently as the Young Stars Game appears to be on the verge of cancellation.  The NHL would be advised to come up with a permanent format for the game and quit making changes.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

Ovechkin vs, Crosby Battle Continues

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Statistically, the gap between the two rivals is modest. At the moment, the Washington Capitals’ Alexander Ovechkin is second in the NHL scoring race and leads the Pittsburgh Penguins’ Sidney Crosby by just two points….

In the 3 1/2 years they’ve been in the league, Crosby and Ovechkin have developed a Magic Johnson-Larry Bird sort of rivalry. Ovechkin won the Calder Memorial Trophy in their rookie seasons, ahead of Crosby, who is 20 months younger but joined the league the same year as a result of the lockout. Crosby won the MVP in Year 2; and Ovechkin took it last year, a season in which Crosby was out of the race early as a result of the 29 games he missed because of a high ankle sprain.

This year, Ovechkin’s advantage stems largely from team success. The Capitals are off to an excellent start, despite massive injuries, while the Penguins waddle along, their herd thinned by free-agent defections and an inability to handle their casualties as well as the Caps.

But half a season does not a year make and a healthy and motivated Crosby may still have something to say about the scoring and MVP races before all is said and done.

more

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

Matt Beleske Recalled By Ducks

Blog: Hockey News Wire By Paul

ANAHEIM, Calif. – The Anaheim Ducks announced today that the National Hockey League (NHL) club has recalled left wing Matt Beleskey from the Iowa Chops, Anaheim’s primary development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL).

Beleskey, 20 (6/7/88), scored 6-9=15 points with 22 penalty minutes (PIM) in 18 games with Iowa this season. Among active Iowa players, Beleskey paced the team in points-per-game scoring with an average of .83 per game. In addition, he ranked fourth on the Chops in goals and points, fifth in assists and first in power play goals (5).

Selected in the fourth round (112th overall) of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft, Beleskey played four seasons with Belleville of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) from 2004-08, recording 98-191=289 points with 467 PIM in 257 career games. Last season, Beleskey collected 41-49=90 points with 106 PIM in 62 games, finishing 13th in OHL scoring and ninth in goals. He led the Bulls and finished fourth among league leaders in postseason scoring (12-21=33) en route to appearances in the OHL Championship Series and the Memorial Cup.

A native of Windsor, Ontario, Beleskey has never appeared in an NHL game.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | Hockey News Wire | Permalink
 

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