Kukla's Korner

Celebrating Kerry Fraser

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sean of Down Goes Brown,

I invite you to join me in celebrating a successful career with this list of Good Things About Kerry Fraser.

• Was an independent spirit, and not some weak-kneed conformist who made all his difficult decisions based on what’s written down in some sort of “rule book”.

• Taught you at an early age that life is unfair, justice is a myth, and that we live in a cold and uncaring universe that will feed you small morsels of hope only to crush and mock you—all of which most people don’t get to find out until they’re much older.

• s often unfairly referred to as “evil”, which theologians will tell you is not only inaccurate but actually impossible as it implies the presence of a soul.

read on

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Officiating, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: kerry+fraser

Why Crosby Wins The Hart

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damien Cox of The Spin,

So if I were to make a case for Sidney Crosby to win the Hart Trophy this season, it would go something along these lines.

Obviously he’s having a tremendous season, including his best goal-scoring campaign ever with 49 goals as of today. If you believe goals matter more than points, and certainly second assists are given out like candy in the NHL, than Crosby’s numbers heading into the final weekend are unassailable.

He’s also pretty much doing it alone.

In Washington, Alexander Ovechkin is the best player on the best team and the argument may begin and end there. Ovechkin, it should be noted, has Nicklas Backstrom to play with every night, and somehow Backstrom is still flying below the radar in terms of elite NHLers.

continued

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

Playoff Clinching Scenarios Tonight With Ten Teams In Action

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

#6 Boston Bruins (idle) would clinch a playoff berth…
* if the New York Rangers lose in regulation to the Philadelphia Flyers
#7 Montreal Canadiens (idle) would clinch a playoff berth…
* if the New York Rangers lose (in regulation or overtime/shootout) to the Philadelphia Flyers
#8 Philadelphia Flyers would clinch a playoff berth…
* if they defeat the New York Rangers

Below you can view the full schedule of games for tonight…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Double Whammy

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

The Edmonton Oilers have had a tough year.  They finished last in the NHL this season.  The AHL affiliate, the Springfield Falcons, also finished last in their league.  For the Oilers, help is not on its way from their top minor team.  Springfield has won 24 of their 77 games this season and has 63 points to sit in last place in the AHL.  With 283 goals allowed, no team has allowed as many goals this season as Springfield has.  Their 193 goals for is fourth worst in the league.  Their -90 +/- rating is worst in the league.

Their top scorer is Charles Linglet.  He has 74 points in 75 AHL games.  He is currently in the NHL with the Oilers and has no points in his three NHL games.  The only other two players with significant scoring totals this year are Chad Wiseman and Colton Fretter, who have 54 and 53 points respectively.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

GDT - Game #81: Red Wings at Blue Jackets (7:00)

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Jeff OKWingnut

It is all over but the shouting and the Wings have taken what is theirs.  The Red Wings have emerged from the Peloton of Suck to claim their 19th consecutive post-season appearance.  But now find themselves mired in the Clusterfuch of Seeding; LAK (5), DET (6), NSH (7) all sit with 98 pts.  The LAK and DET each have two games remaining, NSH just one.  Many of the 19 say it doesn’t matter which road trip the Wings journey takes them - - I’ve already announced I’d rather avoid PHX.  It appears Uncle Mike just wants another Fresca, consequences be damned, Jimmah is between the pipes tonight.  Uncle Mike says May and Gator “will have the opportunity to compete” for a roster spot.  Five other Griffins will be on the black ace squad.

Wings are in Columbus for hoping for another happy ending. This is the last game of the season for the BJ’s, they are hoping to get lucky with a lottery pick chance.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Will Claude Noel Be The Columbus Coach Next Season?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,

Since Noel took over after the firing of Ken Hitchcock on Feb. 3, most of the team’s young players’ performances have spiked, and the club’s 10-9-5 record - while not glamorous - has been a mild improvement.

But the question that general manager Scott Howson must answer is whether Noel is the long-term solution for the long-suffering Blue Jackets, whether his quirky, unconventional approach is more than just an antidote to Hitchcock’s hard-tack style at the end of another lost season.

“Claude has done an impressive job here under difficult circumstances” is the extent of what Howson would say yesterday.

Still, it’s quite possible - perhaps even likely - that Noel’s last game behind the Blue Jackets’ bench will be at 7 tonight, when the Detroit Red Wings visit Nationwide Arena.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: claude+noel

Jagr Missed At Mellon Arena Reunion

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Gorman of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,

It wasn’t the same without Jaromir Jagr.

Jagr was extended an invitation, but was one of a number of members from the Penguins’ first two Stanley Cup champions who couldn’t attend. Neither could Tom Barrasso, Scotty Bowman, Ron Francis, Joe Mullen, Mark Recchi, Kevin Stevens or Rick Tocchet, all important ingredients.

“That’s what it takes to make a championship team,” said Ken Schinkel, the former Penguins player and coach who oversaw the 1984 draft that netted Lemieux. “The elite player that Mario is, he makes everybody better. But you’ve got to have that other talented guy.”

Jagr, indisputably, was that other talented guy.

This summer is the 20th anniversary of the Penguins drafting Jagr. Next season will be the 10th since he left in a forgettable trade that unforgettably returned Kris Beech, Ross Lupaschuk and Michal Sivek. In between those two landmark dates, the Penguins made 11 consecutive playoffs and won the Stanley Cup twice.

“I think later on some things happened that were unfortunate, but I’m sure Mario still has a place in his heart for him,” said Paul Coffey, the Hall of Fame defenseman. “As good as Mario was and is, you still need a supporting cast. Gretzky had Messier and Kurri and the rest of us. You can’t win by yourself — and Jaromir was huge, a great hockey player.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jaromir+jagr

Alexei Ponikarovsky Five For Boarding And A Game Misconduct

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Josh Bailey suffered a cut on the play, did not return but should be ok.

Suspension worthy?

update 2:50pm, Now reports state Bailey out 4-5 weeks with facial lacerationsw.

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexei+ponikarovsky, josh+bailey

Flyers Need Two Points This Weekend

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Frank Seravalli of the Philadelphia Daily News,

With just two games left in their never-ending, 82-game slate, the Flyers’ goal is clear: Capture two points against the Rangers this weekend and they’re in the playoffs.

Just win, baby, either tonight at Madison Square Garden or Sunday at the Wachovia Center.

That’s easier said than done. But the Flyers, going up against a team that cost them home-ice advantage on the final day of the regular season last year, wouldn’t have it any other way.

“We control our destiny,” Ian Laperriere said. “Sometimes you get down to this time of year and you have to hope that other teams lost games to get in. We don’t need that. For us, we need to win one game to get in.

“It won’t be easy. That’s the team that wants to pass us. The pressure is there. We need to play hard and with emotion.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Bruins Can Win With Shutdown Defense

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

They can win without Savard, even without a semblance of a power play, by gumming up the middle, trapping like 18th century Quebec frontiersmen, and leaving it to Tuukka Rask to brick up the net.

Exciting? Hardly. Total snoozefest. But winning is its own excitement, and the Bruins will go into the postseason most likely second only to New Jersey for goals allowed. It usually takes three things to win a Cup: a power play, real defense, and strong goaltending. No one’s going to make the Bruins a favorite, but they have two of the three essentials. Although, with backliners Andrew Ference (hernia), Dennis Seidenberg (torn wrist tendon), and Mark Stuart (ailing pinky finger) out of the mix, real defense could be more in peril than even a legit power play.

Does it get any better than this? No. But it could be worse, just as there are times when things can be worse than .000.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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