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Devils in the Details: September 18, 2010

Blog: KK Hockey By Michael Smith

Devils in the Details is a daily round-up of links to all things Devils-related throughout the season.

• Tom Gulitti discusses the flexibility tryouts Marcus Nilsson and Adam Mair would give the Devils should they need to deal a forward to get under the salary cap.

• More on Mair from John Fischer at In Lou We Trust, who takes an in-depth, by-the-numbers look at the gritty Sabres forward.  The numbers don’t look good.

Lou Lamoriello likes the look of his team thus far.  Mark Everson agrees and calls the defense the best since Scott Stevens and Scott Niedermayer left.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: adam+mair, devils+in+the+details, ilya+kovalchuk, marcus+nilsson, mike+mottau, travis+zajac, zach+parise

Retire Scott Niedermayer’s Number In New Jersey?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger,

Now that Scott Niedermayer has retired as an active NHL player, the Devils are considering retiring No. 27 at some point this season.

General manager Lou Lamoriello told The Star-Ledger no date has been set to raise No. 27 to the Prudential Center rafters aloingside Nos. 4 and 3. However, it could happen before the season is out.

“It’s a possibility,” Lamoriello said. “We’ll have some discussions about it. We’ll see. It’s something that should be considered.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: scott+niedermayer

Malkin Thinking Stanley Cup

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,

Two words never got lost in translation for Penguins center Evgeni Malkin: Stanley Cup.

He spoke those words a lot to coach Dan Bylsma in July during their two days together in Moscow. He offered them again Friday when assessing what would qualify as a good season personally.

“Win Stanley Cup,” he said, eyebrows arching, voice rising and teeth flashing through an open-mouthed grin — signs that Malkin is comfortable with the English words he has chosen.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: evgeni+malkin

Morning Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“I think we’re way better than we were last year.  I believe our defense is eight deep and probably the best defense in the league this year. And if your defense is really good, it instantly makes your goaltending really good.

“And we’ve got lots of scoring up front. Our young players are now 24 or 25, but they still have four or five years of experience and they should, for the next five or six years, be in their primes.”

Bobby Clarke, Senior VP of the Philadelphia Flyers.  More from Clark by Edward Fraser of The Hockey News.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bobby+clarke

Komisarek Needs To Find His Identity

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jeff Blair of the Globe and Mail,

And so once again the trumpet call to truculence is sounding, on this particular morning cutting its way through the coughing and random expectorating of fluids and clichés that signal Toronto Maple Leafs training camp physicals.

It is to be hoped that this season Mike Komisarek can filter some of the nonsense out. There is an unnerving inevitability to Komisarek, whose lost first year of a five-year, $22.5-million (U.S.) contract ended in February with shoulder surgery and left him with no goals, four assists and 40 penalty minutes to show for 34 games. A seventh overall pick in 2001, he has the size and attitude that suggests he’s at home in the hurly burly of the game.

At times with the Montreal Canadiens, his former team, there were glimpses of offensive awareness. But here’s the thing: watching Komisarek wade into the thick of things or line up an opponent is cringe-inducing, because too often he’s the movable force or the movable object. That’s what happened with the Canadiens, when he was beaten mercilessly by Milan Lucic in a fight in November, 2008, injuring his shoulder, then targeted during the 2009 playoffs by Lucic again and also Zdeno Chara.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+komisarek

The 4-2-1-2 Theory

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Rosen of NHL.com,

Former NHL general manager Craig Button has a theory that if you allocate 65-70 percent of your salary cap money to nine specific players, you’ll be giving your team a chance to contend for the Stanley Cup. He calls it his “4-2-1-2 theory,” and with the way things have gone this offseason, it’s not at all surprising to learn that according to Button, the goaltender is the seventh-most important asset when it comes to distributing money from your salary cap.

“You need four good defensemen, two really good centermen and then your goaltender comes in before you get two more good forwards,” Button, now an analyst for the NHL Network, explained to NHL.com. “If you put most of your money into a goaltender and you don’t have defense, those teams are not winning.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Questions Remain For The Ducks

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Stephens of Ducks Blog at the OC Register,

Many preseason predictions don’t see any postseason games at Honda Center next spring either, but not everyone seems to share that sentiment.

“Not in our locker room, that’s for sure,” center Ryan Getzlaf said. “Our organization’s been built the same way since I’ve been here. Every year we’ve been building for the same thing.

“You can’t do it every year. It’s a fact of the game. You’re not going to go out and every season and perform to the highest level. You’d love to and everybody would love to. It just doesn’t work out that way.”

After the disappointment of last season, the Ducks enter camp amid expectations that are sharply scaled back from the post-Stanley Cup years.

more

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Andrei Markov Continues With His Rehab Work

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette,

Markov won’t be with his teammates this morning when training camp begins in Brossard with practice and scrimmage. Instead, he’ll be back in the gym, his tedious Brossard home, then skating gently, with supervision, on his own.

“I’d like to come back tomorrow, but it’s not possible yet,” Markov said yesterday. “I’m doing my best and I’m happy with my rehab. I can do different things on the ice. My knee feels a little weak, but it’s getting stronger every day.”

He’s circled no date on the calendar for his return to action, or even to practice with the team.

“Maybe another month,” he said. “Maybe more, maybe less.”

History suggests Markov is a quick healer, having returned from the slashed foot tendon five weeks earlier than first forecast. But an ACL is not a tendon; it is a serious working joint and you’d best believe the Canadiens will not rush Markov back into action with at least 82 games to play.

“I want to feel comfortable on the ice,” he said. “I want to stay healthy, because it hasn’t been like that the last couple of years. You can’t feel 100 per cent all season long -sometimes it’s up and down with bruises. But I want to enjoy the game every night.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: andrei+markov

It Is What It Is When It Comes To Zherdev

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer,

Apparently, the native of Ukraine, who most recently played for the Atlant-Moscow Mystishchi, is still a mystery. At least, he was Thursday at Flyer Skate Zone, one day before the team officially opened training camp.

Even though Zherdev understands English, he insisted on using Slava Kouznetsov, the Adirondak Phantoms’ skating coach, as a translator. And what the 6-foot-2, 203-pounder said, via translation, was less than enlightening.

Asked about his personal goals for the season, Zherdev responded: “How it’s going to go, it’s going to go.”

Assuming the message was lost in translation, the question was asked again, but differently. The answer, though, was similar to the previous answer.

“I will work and do [what’s required],” he said with a smile. “How it turns out, it turns out.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nikolai+zherdev

Stars Hit PEI

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News,

The chore of getting 53 hockey players and their equipment to Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island is a labor of love.

And when you consider it’s for a three-day training camp “peck on the cheek,” it might seem more like a bad romance.

But the Stars are willing to endure the travel challenges because they believe that future training camps on Canada’s smallest province could be great for team unity.

“I think you can say this is a bit of a dry run,” Stars general manager Joe Nieuwendyk said of an experiment that begins today and ends with a flight back to Texas on Monday afternoon.

“They obviously were very proactive in getting us, and I think we also had an idea from the start that this would be something that has worked very well for this organization in the past with Vail. So I think we all pushed ahead with this year, knowing the schedule wasn’t perfect, but also knowing that it would be a really nice chance to see how it works.”

continued

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

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