Kukla's Korner

Chicago Will Name Mike Kitchen Assistant Coach

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune,

The Blackhawks will announce Monday that they have hired Mike Kitchen as assistant coach to replace the departed John Torchetti on head coach Joel Quenneville’s staff.

Kitchen is a former head coach of the St. Louis Blues after taking over for Quenneville in 2004 and most recently was an assistant for the Panthers.

The Hawks have also re-signed assistant coach Mike Haviland to remain with the Hawks.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+kitchen

Raise The Cup

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the NHL Network at NHL.com,

Every weekday throughout July and August, the NHL Network-U.S. will air a special series, “35 Years of Stanley Cup Clinchers, 1975-2010.” Fans can watch a re-broadcast of Stanley Cup-clinching games from seasons past with a chance to vote for their top five contests. Those top five games—Fans’ Choice Encores—will air from Aug. 23-27.

Here is the schedule for July 12-16:

Monday, July 12
1980: Philadelphia at N.Y. Islanders, Game 6

In their eighth NHL season, the New York Islanders became the second expansion team to win the Stanley Cup. Two players, Bill Smith and Bob Nystrom, had been with the team since it’s inception in 1972-73.

continued and watch the game highlights of the Philly/NYI game 6 below.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, NHL Network, | KK Hockey | Permalink

What Will Chicago Do With The Hjalmarsson Offer Sheet?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tim Sassone of the Chicago Daily-Herald,

The question remains: Do the Hawks have enough cap space to match the offer sheet for Hjalmarsson and sign restricted free-agent goalie Antti Niemi and enough players to fill out a roster?

It would seem as if Hjalmarsson is someone the Hawks can’t let go, a 23-year-old defenseman with a huge upside. Bowman himself recently said the Hawks’ defense, meaning Duncan Keith, Brent Seabrook, Brian Campbell and Hjalmarsson, was the strength of the team.

Niemi has filed for arbitration and his contract demands could be more than what the Hawks believe are reasonable for someone with one year of NHL experience, even though he won the Stanley Cup.

It’s possible the Hawks will let Niemi go to his arbitration hearing and hope for a favorable reward.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: niklas+hjalmarsson

Pierre-Marc Bouchard Recovering From Post-Concussion Symptoms

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Brothers of the Pioneer Press,

Six months ago, Pierre-Marc Bouchard not only stayed off the ice at the Xcel Energy Center, but he dared venture out for only short walks through his neighborhood.

Mentally, he said, he “kind of hit the bottom.”

Last week, however, Bouchard was back to feeling his oats.

“Gotta go,” he said by phone from his summer home in Montreal. “My brother wants to go for a bike ride.”

It’s no coincidence that as Bouchard missed 81 of the Wild’s 82 games last season because of post-concussion symptoms, the Wild floundered in the NHL’s Western Conference standings and fell short of the playoffs.

Team personnel, along with Bouchard, are cautiously optimistic that the playmaking former first-round draft pick will play for the Wild this season. Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher can’t wait to see the shifty, 5-foot-10 forward back in the team’s lineup.

“He will come back, and the sooner the better, but again there’s still some healing to be done,” Fletcher said


Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pierre-marc+bouchard

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

One has to wonder if we’ve seen the last of Sutter.

No, not because Feaster’s signing makes the Flames GM more vulnerable to be fired. But because with Sutter’s obvious distaste for the media, we shouldn’t be surprised if it’s Feaster who stands in front of the mic instead of Sutter for future state-of-the-union addresses.

-Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun.  More on Feaster from Francis.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jay+feaster

Facebook & Twitter Talk From Some Hockey Folks And Others

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Have a feeling some of the boys had a few ‘pops’ too…

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Report- Kovalchuk Drama Ends Tomorrow

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via a Daren Millard tweet,

Kovy-gate comes 2 an end tomorrow. Kings win the process.. Don’t want announcment 2 get overshadowed by WC.

added 6:25pm, via Rich Hammond of LA Kings Insider,

No confirmation yet. One strong team source has just said that there is “continued engagement,” but that no announcement is imminent. Updates will be forthcoming if necessary.

added 6:52pm, via Pieree LeBrun tweet,

For all those asking, yes - Kings and Kovalchuk are talking again.

added 7:00pm, via Darren Dreger tweet,

Lombardi tells TSN. “Ilya Kovalchuk is coming to Los Angeles for face to face discussions, just like any free agent would. We are a long way from agreeing on a contract.”

added 7:20pm, via Helene Elliott tweet,

Hold off on buying Kovalchuk King jerseys. Lombardi: “reports of us signing him are utterly false.”

via Rich Hammond of LA Kings Insider, “

Kovalchuk is only coming here for a visit,” Lombardi said. “It is a great opportunity for him to meet us and us to meet him. Reports of us announcing a signing tomorrow are utterly false.”

added 7:48pm, via a Pierre LeBrun tweet,

“Ilya is coming out to LA,” Kings GM Dean Lombardi told ESPN.com Sunday night. ``We’re going to meet face to face. But reports that we are announcing his signing tomorrow are utterly and completely false. We have no deal. We’re not even close. I mean, who knows, maybe we’ll get close tomorrow but we have no deal right now.”

added 8:30pm, from Sportsnet,

While Lombardi has said a contract announcement is not imminent, sources tell Sportsnet that Kovalchuk has been adamant this past week in finding a way to bridge the negotiating gap between the two parties.

The source also says, despite the Kings’ demands to sign Kovalchuk to a term and dollar amount that fits their plans, L.A. has been the No. 1 choice destination for the Russian winger and his wife since free agency started July 1st.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ilya+kovalchuk

Toews With The Cup

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP at the Globe and Mail,

Jonathan Toews received a hero’s welcome in his hometown Sunday, along with other accolades for the quiet 22-year-old who has already won a lifetime’s worth of awards.

Toews was cheered by hundreds of fans who chanted his name outside city hall as he raised the Stanley Cup and kissed it. Many supporters wore Chicago Blackhawks jerseys with Toews’ name and number.

“Even though he’s famous, he’s still very humble and remembers his roots and doesn’t take it all for granted,” gushed Toni Toews — no relation — who showed up two hours early with her 16-year-old daughter Georgee, carrying a banner inscribed with the words “You did it”.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jonathan+toews

Worst 20 Corsi Rates

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

Since my last sabermetrics and hockey post was the top 20 Corsi rates, it is logical to continue with the worst 20.  Corsi ratings are the difference in the number of shots directed at goal (shots on goal, missed shots and blocked shots) by a team and their opposition in 5 on 5 situations.  They are a strong measurement of puck possession, as a team with possession of the puck tends to shoot a lot.  As we are looking at rates in this post, each player is normalized by the number of 5 on 5 minutes that he plays.  Thus players who do not play many minutes a game and thus cannot get a large Corsi by counting methods may appear here.  In fact this is more likely on a worst players list than a bets players list, as teams will want to play their best players as much as possible while hiding their worst players.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

What Will Modano Do?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mke Heika of the Dallas Morning News,

...the bottom line is Modano has to find a way to make himself happy in the new place. If he can’t do that, he just might retire. Quite honestly, I think he could see himself happy in a lot of situations. I think Minnesota is too close to Dallas in that the Wild is rebuilding, as well, but I do think he would be energized by the Red Wings or Sharks. And, if you look around, there are other teams that could use his services. It wouldn’t surprise me if a couple of more GMs contact him this week.

So what does that all mean? Modano is still deciding. It’s a huge step to emerge from a divorce like this. He’s been on his first date now, and I think he’s processing that information. He has the time, and appears to have a few options, so teams will just have to wait and see what he’s thinking. Could a team like Detroit close the door? Sure, but I think the Red Wings knew this was going to be a process, and they are being patient with Modano.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+modano

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