Kukla's Korner

Morning Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“Our failures are higher than most teams’ successes.  We don’t really worry about the outside noise. We went to the final four last year and we played very well. We’re going to build on that this upcoming year; last year is over and done with.

“Perception versus reality…how many teams have accomplished what we’ve accomplished the past six or seven years?”

-Doug Wilson, San Jose Shark GM.  More on Wilson and the Sharks from Edward Fraser of The Hockey News,

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: doug+wilson

Mind Help For The Flames

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun,

It’s easy to think the word ‘confidence’ is the most over-used in pro sports.

Many will ask: How does an athlete with all the skills to reach the highest level, succeed there but suddenly stop believing they can do it?

It happens, and the Calgary Flames are turning to sports psychologist Dave Paskevich to help win the head games.

The Flames have hired Paskevich, whose speciality is applied sports psychology, to be their mental development coach.

He won’t be skating or shooting, but the University of Calgary professor may be a huge help in preventing those losing skids and scoring slumps.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Thoughts on a Thornton Extension

Blog: KK Members Blog By nosferatu

Reports have emerged in the past few weeks, first from Pierre LeBrun and then Craig Custance, indicating that the San Jose Sharks are at work on a contract extension for Joe Thornton.  It’s a bit of a no-brainer: Thornton has led the Sharks in scoring in each of his five seasons with the club, he’s established himself as a fan-favorite (for good reason), and it seems he enjoys being a part of the community and organization after his experience with Boston.  For better or worse—taking into account his playoff shortcomings and laid-back attitude—it’s clear that the Sharks have hitched their wagon to Thornton.

The big question, then, is not if the Sharks should sign Thornton to an extension, but for how long.  Sharks General Manager Doug Wilson has already re-signed two key forwards to new deals this summer—Patrick Marleau and Joe Pavelski—both for four years.  In talking to Custance, Wilson said, “We don’t have any contracts longer than four years.  We are a player payroll team.  We operate the way we operate.”  We could assume, then, that Thornton might be extended for three or four more years as well.  Would it be more prudent for the Sharks to extend Thornton for longer, though?

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink

Leave it to Steve

Blog: KK Members Blog By The Upper Canadien

Tampa Bay announced the addition of Dominic Moore today, a player who brings much more to the table than most pundits give him credit for. Crafty, fast, gritty and great on faceoffs, Moore was a key cog in the Canadiens playoff race in 2010. He’s a smart supplement for the talented roster Steve Yzerman has put together as a rookie general manager in mere months.

What Yzerman and a new ownership team have accomplished in a short amount of time is quite impressive. He’s installed smart hockey people across the organization, from the scouting department to behind the bench. Guy Boucher, as a new member of the NHL coaching fraternity, was viewed as something of a genius by his former employers, the Montreal Canadiens. Literally. He has two university degrees, studies his players carefully and communicates extremely well. He is said to keep books of notes – on each player he coaches. This sort of cerebral approach to the game, combined with the respect Boucher shows his players, is exactly what Tampa Bay needs post-Tocchet - and certainly post-Melrose. The Canadiens were very, very sad to see him go. Boucher was a great hire, and a fantastic first personnel move for GM Yzerman.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: gagne, kubina, moore, stamkos, tampa+bay, yzerman

Chicago May Be Losing Their Stanley Cup Goalie

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tim Sassone of the Chicago Daily-Herald,

It doesn’t look good as far as the Blackhawks keeping goalie Antti Niemi.

Niemi’s arbitration award will be announced today and multiple sources believe the number will end up well past $3 million, perhaps close to $4 million, which the Hawks couldn’t fit under the salary cap the way the roster stands today.

“I think he’s gone,” one of Niemi’s Hawks teammates said Friday before the start of the team’s third annual convention at the Hilton Chicago.

Another NHL source wondered how the arbitrator couldn’t see to award Niemi the $4 million he is believed to have sought when the Hawks are paying their other goalie, Cristobal Huet, the one that didn’t win the Stanley Cup, a salary of $5.6 million.

“I don’t see how this works out in the Hawks’ favor,” the source said.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: antti+niemi

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“They felt very strongly the number had to have a three at the beginning and we felt very strongly it shouldn’t have a three.  And the number—where we ended up—was within the range, that we did an internal analysis on, we felt the arbitrator could come down with.”

-Calgary Flames Assistant GM Jay Feaster on Ian Whte’s contract of $2,999,995.  More on this from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun at Slam.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ian+white

I May Be Looking For You

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Kukla’s Korner will be expanding our blogging umbrella, meaning I am looking for more hockey bloggers.

If you write about a team or write about all things NHL, I want to know about it.

It will certainly help if you have some blogging experience but if you feel you have what it takes to become a hockey blogger, you are also invited to apply.

Send me an .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) and impress me with your writing skills.  I may know some of you but I am sure there will be people I have not heard about too.

Your application will be kept confidential as will all correspondence between us.

note: original post date was 8:22pm on 7/5/10

update 7/21/10, I am still reviewing over 150 applicants, but you will be hearing back from me within the next two weeks.

update 7/30/10 If interested in applying, this is the time to do so.  I am beginning to make some decisions this weekend.

Filed in: KK Website Business, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Off-Spinning And Doosras With Off-Putting Cap-A-Doodle-Doos

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By VooX

Many big things have happened the past week and a bit.  Let’s get straight to the chase, bitches, grab a drink because here we go.

If you haven’t been checking out our friend Animal Drew at Nightmare On Helm Street this summer, shame on you.  Not only has he been keeping us updated on important Wings developments on the Gore, more on that later, but he’s also been hard at work kicking sand in the faces of Junior’s bandwagon.

In an epic, and wonderfully sadistic, series of summer posts he’s been detailing the roster demolition in Chicago.  The culmination of his work is this post describing the “Fire Sale” in Chicago.

My highlight?  This wrap-up:

To bring our total net difference in points for Chicago at -134 points.

Epic stuff.  Remember when people in Chicago laughed at us when they “stole” Kopecky?  Now he is Junior’s saviour.  Laugh hard at your belly on this one, and it is not even over.  The Emperor offers us this story:

If the arbitrator decides Niemi’s worth much more than $3 million a year, Bowman may have no choice but to walk away from the decision…

There are rumors the ‘Hawks will accept the decision and then try and trade Niemi so they don’t end up losing a top asset without getting anything back in return… any team dealing with the Blackhawks… will know they’ve got the team over a barrel and will be offering little in return.

Game, set, match, bandwagon.  We’ll be hearing from them in another 40 years.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Ducks Trade Wisniewski To The Islanders

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Katie Strang tweet,

The Islanders have traded a conditional third-round pick in 2011 for Anaheim defenseman James Wisniewski

added 8:13pm, via the New York Islanders,

“We see James as a key addition to our team and we feel our fans will connect with his style of play,” said Islanders General Manager Garth Snow. “He is a solid puck-moving defenseman who can bring an added element of toughness to our blue-line.”

added 9:27pm, via Anaheim Ducks tweet,

(GM) Murray on Wiz trade: “It was a tough situation… But I have other plans, that’s the thing.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: james+wisniewski

Financial Troubles Continue For Fedorov

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from George Malik of Mlive,

Former Red Wings forward Sergei Fedorov is owed $43 million by his former business partner, Joseph Zada, but as Zada either can not or will not repay Fedorov, the former Wing sued the Hyman Lippitt law firm—which represented both Zada and Fedorov at one point—in an attempt to actually receive the $60 million pay-off Zada had originally promised to pay Fedorov to settle their differences.

Subsequently, Fedorov’s lack of finances yielded three bank foreclosures on two homes in Metro Detroit and one in Florida, and, according to LifeSports.ru, Fedorov received worse news today—and it’s news that means that the nearly 41-year-old Fedorov, who played this past season for Metallurg Magnitogorsk, might have to continue his playing career to simply keep paying the bills:


Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sergei+fedorov

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