Kukla's Korner

Oilers Meet To Get Back On Track

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Edmonton Sun,

The Edmonton Oilers had a little heart-to-heart yesterday.

Head coach Craig MacTavish gathered the troops during practice and spoke to them for around 20 minutes.

The message was clear. They need more from everybody in order to save their sinking ship.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: craig+mactavish, edmonton+oilers

Can Nabby Play 82

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Mercury News,

When Ron Wilson was asked recently how many games he planned to play goalie Evgeni Nabokov this season, the Sharks coach leaned back in his office chair and pretended to do the math in his head.

“Well, we have 82 regular-season games, and then add in the playoffs . . . ” Wilson said.

He was kidding.

Maybe.

read on (reg. may be req.)

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: evgeni+nabokov, goalies, san+jose+sharks

Year After Year

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Tennessean,

But how does Detroit, which hosts the Predators in their first matchup of the season tonight, do it year after year?

The secret to its success seems to be a mix of luck and longevity. While centering play on a core of key veteran contributors, the Red Wings have drafted a contingent of young talent, which they have injected into their system and painstakingly molded into professionals.

The result is a continual influx of ability that complements the nucleus, easily replaces the departed, and prevents Detroit from the falloff so many other teams experience.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: detroit+red+wings

Havlat Not Ready For Contact

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Chicago Daily Herald,

Martin Havlat is not quite ready for a practice with contact.

“I was hoping for this week, but we want to make sure he’s mentally ready for it. That’s a big key,” Denis Savard said. “His mind-set is not quite there yet.”

more on the Blackhawks…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: chicago+blackhawks, denis+savard, injuries, martin+havlat

Revenue Issue From Small Market Teams

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rick Westhead of the Toronto Star,

A growing number of small-market NHL franchise owners are wringing their hands over how league’s CBA – particularly Article 49 – governs revenue sharing, several team owners say.

Here’s the problem: Teams like the Nashville Predators, Florida Panthers and Phoenix Coyotes, which rely on revenue-sharing money, must generate “a year-to-year revenue growth rate in excess of the league average revenue growth rate,” the CBA says.

Put simply, if the average NHL club increases revenue 6 per cent this season, and the Predators increase revenue 5 per cent, the club would lose 25 per cent, or about $3 million, of its revenue-sharing stipend of $11 million (all figures U.S.).

read on

Remember gentlemen, no complaining, it was your CBA!

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Developing Trend

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Buffalo News,

The Sabres still have talent but five of a kind has become genuinely unkind this season. They have been stifled by their own play and not-so-subtle changes in a league that has returned to tight checking and close quarters. Teams are intent on buckling down on defense and exploiting teams relying too much on skating alone.

“The message is there,” Ruff said after practice Tuesday. “You watched the playoffs. You saw how tight it got, and the scoring chances got fewer and fewer. Coaches are pretty good at looking at video and wondering what’s going on and [experimenting]. There is a little bit of a trend developing.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: buffalo+sabres, lindy+ruff

Average Against The Spread

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the LA Times,

The Red Wings, who have dominated opponents, are 11-2-0-1 on the ice but 7-7 against the spread.

Want more? Ottawa, which has the NHL’s best overall record, had a 7-6 mark against the spread in its first 13 games.

more (reg, req) and if you want an explanation of all the hockey betting verbage, this story provides it…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: hockey+betting

Gordie Howe Is The Greatest Of Them All

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Since Joe Pelletier asked, here are my memories of Gordie Howe…

Almost 44 years ago to the day (November 10th), I was there.

I witnessed Gordie Howe break the goal scoring record when he ripped a wrister against Montreal goaltender Charlie Hodge for goal #545.  The old Olympia shook from the foundations, a standing-O for what seemed like an eternity, it would build, die down a bit, then build once again.

I cried, why, because I too was relieved of the pressure Gordie was feeling.  He had gone scoreless for about six games and even his shoulders were starting to feel the burden.

I remember looking up in the rafters before the game, the Wings had tons of balloons up there, hoping to release them onto the ice if Gordie scored.  Well, released they did, but about half of them had deflated, and they rained down on the ice like a wounded duck.  It didn’t matter, fans started tossing anything they could, cups, hats, food, even a few pairs of shoes.

I shudder whenever I think of that day so let’s take a stroll down memory lane…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: detroit+red+wings, gordie+howe

Mellanby Blames Bettman

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Dave Waddell at the Windsor Star,

Essex native Ralph Mellanby, the 73-year-old former executive producer of Hockey Night in Canada for two decades, says NHL commissioner Gary Bettman is responsible for many of the league’s problems.

“Bettman to me is the real problem for hockey,” said Mellanby, who will be signing his book Walking with Legends Saturday at 2 p.m. in Chapters at the Devonshire Mall and at the Essex Legion at 3:30 p.m.

“He’s done so much damage to hockey it may never recover. We don’t have time to go through the litany of errors.”

Mellanby cites the usual laundry list of being in bad hockey markets, ignoring European opportunities, slowness to improve a deteriorating product, turbulent labour relations, the ignoring of Canadian markets, the reluctance to embrace change and some controversial TV deals and asks why Bettman is still employed.

continued…

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: gary+bettman, hnic, ralph+mellanby

Danger Ahead For Buffalo

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stan Fischler at the Hockey Journal,

Thomas Vanek has yet to show signs that he can live up to his big payday, while second-year man Drew Stafford, who played so well in his rookie season, has been a disappointment as a sophomore.

When you add the depleted blue line missing regulars Teppo Numminen, Dimitri Kalinin and the previously rejuvenated Jaro Spacek, it’s evident that head coach Lindy Ruff hasn’t faced this level of trouble since the pre-lockout days – and those battles were fought with Drury and Briere.

much more on the NHL and one bit we covered yesterday…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: buffalo+sabres

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