Kukla's Korner

Burke’s Idea Would Make Fantasy Draft Irrelevant

Blog: KK Hockey By @DaveDavisHockey

Be honest.  A big part of the enjoyment of watching the NHL All-Star Fantasy Draft stemmed from your curiosity of who would be picked last.  For a few media and hockey people, however, the climactic moments of the last four or five guys sweating it out could be recorded as a recruitment video for the fun police.

Nick Kypreos made it clear on Sportsnet that he felt bad for Phil Kessel when he was the last player chosen.  Brian Burke took it a step further, telling some media folks that he’d rather have the last five players picked out of a hat instead of being drafted like the rest of the team.  According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, the Toronto Maple Leafs GM believes there was a negative focus on his boy last night.

It’s as if Burke thinks we’re all dumb enough to tag Kessel with the Mr. Irrelevant label for this game.  In reality, most of us are pretty aware of the politics that were involved here, and that Kessel is a more skilled hockey player than half of the guys that were picked ahead of him.  Who knows, maybe Ryan Kesler actually cringed at the thought of having David Backes in his kitchen later this season.

Negative focus?  Is anyone really looking at Kessel today in a lesser light as a hockey player because of this?  Based on his uber cool reaction to how it went down for him, I’d venture to guess it’s just the opposite.  And him getting the charity money and the car was a very nice touch, especially considering what the Leafs forward has been through with his health.

Look, there will continue to be debate on whether this fantasy draft idea will become a staple for future all-star games or if it will grow stale and fall to the wayside.  But if you’re going to start removing the suspense from the best subplots of the event because you’re worried about people’s feelings, then the discussion is over and you might as well scrap the format entirely.

Twitter: @DaveDavisHockey

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Phil Kessel Was The Last Player Sitting - Do You Care?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

This tweet from Darren Dreger gives us Brian Burke’s thoughts on Kessel being picked last in the ASG Draft last night..

Brian Burke suggests last 5 players of the ASG draft should be drawn out of a hat. Doesn’t like negative focus on Kessel.

Now we know how Burke feels, or do we?  Last night on Sportsnet…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: 2011+all-star+game, brian+burke, phil+kessel

The Life Of The Equipment Men On A Road Trip

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Tennessean,

11:05 a.m. Practice ends and the Predators file off the ice at Bridgestone Arena.

11:10. Players stuff their equipment into blue-and-yellow bags in front of their stalls while equipment manager Pete Rogers lines up sticks numerically in the hallway outside the locker room.

11:25. Rogers, assistant equipment manager Jeff Camelio, and players load the bags — each the dimensions of an average refrigerator — onto a large dolly. The blue helmets (the ones the Predators wear for home games) are the only equipment that remain in the stalls.

11:36. Rogers checks the stick count on a notepad. He looks at extra jerseys in case one or more players are called up from Milwaukee.

continued

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

Fantasy Draft a Reminder That All-Star Weekend’s All About Fun

Blog: KK Hockey By Jon Jordan

The intent of altering the format for the NHL All-Star Game was to generate more interest in a mid-season exhibition that most would agree had become a bit blasé. With the rosters of Team Lidstrom and Team Staal now filled via last night’s Fantasy Draft and the SuperSkills competition on tap for tonight, whether or not the game itself will have any added spice remains to be seen but, so far as that added interest goes, the vibe here in Raleigh and the pageantry surrounding the selection process itself both suggest the achievement of just that.

The All-Star Game and its surrounding events should be about fun – for the fans, first and foremost, but also for the players involved and the captains and alternates for both sides as well as the draftees played things up effectively and had a good time throughout the process, which was evident in the broadcast.

“It looked good on TV, right?” Tampa Bay Lightning forward Martin St. Louis asked after the event and his question was met with immediate assent. That was the point, of course, and St. Louis and his All-Star contingents got it, doing the event well by playing things up to the best of their ability.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: all-star+fantasy+draft, eric+staal, martin+st.+louis, nhl+all-star+weekend, steven+stamkos, superskills

ASG Hurts The NHL

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stephen Harris of the Boston Herald,

Anyone with even a partial understanding of the sport of hockey, and certainly people who have any fondness or respect for the NHL, should look upon the All-Star Game with nothing but contempt.

The event that occurs tomorrow afternoon at the Carolina Hurricanes’ RBC Center isn’t just a waste of time for all involved, it’s far worse than that. This ridiculous game isn’t merely of zero value in promoting the league, it’s actually a giant negative.

It hurts the game.

continued

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: 2011+all-star+game

Pegula To Outline Plan To Buy Sabres

Blog: KK Hockey By @DaveDavisHockey

from The Buffalo News,

RALEIGH, N.C. — Billionaire businessman Terry Pegula today is expected to take a major step toward buying the Buffalo Sabres when he meets with the NHL executive committee during All-Star Weekend. He will outline his plans to purchase the franchise for $175 million.

The presentation before the panel is considered one of the last hurdles he must clear before officially assuming ownership from Rochester billionaire Tom Golisano. Pegula is expected to be approved by the executive committee over the next several days before the purchase is voted upon by the full NHL board of governors in the next few weeks.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: buffalo+sabres, jeremy+jacobs, nhl+executive+committee, terry+pegula, tom+golisano

Morning Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

More and more this is a hockey season of unfathomable waste in Washington. So little worth preserving on the DVR. New Years Day is less a grand feat in the context of the whole season because we now realize that the game’s swamp conditions greatly aided the guests. The Caps’ most impressive games this season came way back in the fall, when the Caps were the Caps of old: exciting. Now they’re the Devils of the past 15 or 20 years. What I really need from Pepco this hockey season are outages from 7:00-10:00 on Capitals’ game nights.

I was filled with disgust at the game-ending horn Wednesday, and I immediately rang my buddy Michael in up Maine, who I knew was watching like I was. I didn’t even get a hello in to him before I heard these words from his mouth: “Uninspired and unwatchable.”

-pucksandbooks of On Frozen Blog where you can read more on the Capitals season.

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

The Latest On The Komisarek Incident In LA

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from TMZ.com,

NHL all-star Mike Komisarek has told LAPD investigators he NEVER punched a woman in a Hollywood nightclub earlier this month—and witnesses are backing his claim ... TMZ has learned.

Sources close to the investigation tell us multiple clubgoers who were partying near Mike and the women all seem to have the same story—Mike never raised his fists.

continued

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

Will Columbus Make The Playoffs?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,

The Jackets are 23-21-5, with 51 points. They are in 13th place in the Western Conference, five points in back of eighth-place San Jose and seventh-place Chicago.

The West is wild. It is stacked with quality teams, tightly clustered. Of the 15 teams in the conference, 14 are either holding a playoff position or are within five points of eighth place. Nine points separate No.4 Nashville from No.13 Columbus. Only Edmonton is in draft mode.

Five points out of eighth with 33 games to go this is doable, is it not?

The task might be too tall. Five points seems a slight spread, but it is not, not in the big picture. The Jackets have as many points as the 14th-place (next-to-last) team in the conference. Can they jump five teams, including the Los Angeles Kings - who have played well below potential?

more

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

All-Stars Talk Head Shots

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sarah Kwak of Sports Illustrated,

Are you in favor of abolishing all headshots from the game entirely?

Lidstrom: “I think the league is making strides, going in the right direction with the blindside hits and especially hits to the head. So I’m sure they’re going to look even closer at that and see what they can do to eliminate or try and cut down on some of the headshots. At the end, yeah, I think [a rule against headshots] will happen. But then again, sometimes you’re not trying to hit someone in the head, but when you’re skating, your head is going to be down or your head is going to be there first, so it’s a fine line. But I like the direction that the league is going with this.”

H. Sedin: “You don’t want to see guys getting injured. You don’t want to see guys having concussions, but where do you draw the line? It’s extremely tough. It’s not easy to answer. [It’d be great] to have a game where no one goes after the head, but again, a lot of those hits are not done purposefully. It happens. It’s a fast game, so what’s the penalty going to be? Things like that, it’s tough to know what to do about it.”

more players respond to this and another question too…

added 9:16am, I see Geoge posted this story earlier, sorry for the double post folks. In keeping with KK policy, we don’t delete, just point out the mistake and move forward.

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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