Kukla's Korner

All They Do Is Win

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pierre LeBrun at Sportsnet,

The Detroit Red Wings are on their way to capturing the President’s Trophy this week as the NHL’s top team in the regular season and yet you’d be hard-pressed to find many pundits picking them to win the Stanley Cup.

All the Wings do is win and win and win but they don’t seem to get the same respect right now as San Jose or Anaheim. Well, here’s something worth noting—Wings head coach Mike Babcock feels this is the best team he’s had yet.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Hollow Season

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jerry Sullivan of the Buffalo News,

At least they’re still alive. The standard sure has fallen for this team. Who would have imagined that, one year after winning the Presidents’ Trophy, the Sabres would be jumping with joy because they still had an outside chance to finish eighth?

The arena didn’t have much of a pulse Sunday. The fans seemed to know they were watching a squad that was going nowhere, a team that had gone from Cup favorite to also-ran in 10 months. The Sabres won. But for much of the night, they didn’t play with the sort of passion you’d expect.

There was no curtain call by the players after the last regular-season game. Presumably, the Sabres didn’t want to give the impression that their season was over. So odds are, this year’s team will never get a chance to skate around and bid the fans a final goodbye.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

How Do The GMs Rank

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,

“The single most important thing a GM does, and it’s miles ahead of anything else, is hire a coach,” Burke said. “You need to find a guy who can get the team to where it needs to be and then get out of the way. If I talked to Randy Carlyle 10 times last summer, that would be a shock to me. The one decision that will get you famous or get you fired, is who will coach your team.”

While a GM’s career body of work carries significant weight, our rankings focus more on performance over the past year, including at the recent trade deadline.

RANKINGS

1. Brian Burke, Anaheim

The only thing missing from Burke’s portfolio was a Stanley Cup, which he accomplished last season with the Ducks. Burke has helped build one of the NHL’s top teams, but what’s even more impressive is how he took a very uncertain Scott Niedermayer situation and made his team better.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Day Early

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from SSNN.com,

“Look at the run we had in Detroit with the Red Wings in the mid-to-late 90’s,” Federov continued. “It got to the point where we were so good at diving, and we were getting so many power plays that the NHL stepped in and made rules to hamper our style of play. As you can clearly see, the game of hockey has never been the same, and that’s what will happen to the MLS if this initiative goes through.”

more

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

The Race In The West

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

It is a cliché, popularized by Rodney Dangerfield, a favourite comedian of the 1970s, that professional sports teams embraced like a loving grandmother - the idea that they don’t receive enough respect from their peers, adversaries and critics.

Never mind that in an era of parity, NHL teams have a genuinely healthy respect for one another and that another well-worn bromide — on any given Sunday — may be the more appropriate saying, especially at it relates to the Western Conference playoff races.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Stars Of The Week

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NEW YORK (March 31, 2008) – San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton, Nashville Predators goaltender Dan Ellis and Boston Bruins center David Krejci have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending March 30.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Khan(!): Homer Feels “Way, Way Better”

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Reason to feel slightly optimistic today.  Slightly.

Khan(!)

...was extremely optimistic that’ll be able to play this week. The cortisone shot he had on Friday is working well.

“We’ll see, Wednesday or Thursday. I don’t know about Wednesday, but I’m really hopeful for Thursday,’’ Holmstrom said. “Today was way, way better, so I think (the shot) worked. It would be nice to get some games before the playoffs. You’ve been out for a long time, it’s tough to get into the playoffs right away.’‘

Optimistic? Yes. Fully? No.  We’ll see.  The DDC also reports Hasek will be starting Wednesday and Sunday, with Osgood in net Thursday for the last BJ of the year.

Updated 1157 with more from the Anti-Digger.

Mikael Samuelsson didn’t skate and spent his morning on the training table. Coach Mike Babcock said that Samuelsson was feeling better, but there is no date set for his return.

Brad Stuart went through the whole practice. He could pass fine. He could a little, but not with any authority. Stuart said that he’s expecting to return sometime next week. There’s not much that can be done for his broken finger other than taping it.

 

 

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Wild Decisions

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lyle Richardson at the Hockey News,

The Minnesota Wild’s roster could have a significantly different look next season.

Two key veteran forwards, Pavol Demitra and Brian Rolston, are eligible for unrestricted free agency in July and young forward Pierre-Marc Bouchard becomes a restricted free agent.

Pundits have speculated throughout this season as to whether or not the usually budget-conscious Wild management will re-sign all three.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

KK- A New Direct Advertiser - Welcome NHL PlayAction

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

As the way fans watch the game continues to change in this information age, we’re seeing all sorts of new ‘arenas’ where fans can compete and win while cheering on their favorite team.  NHL PlayAction launched recently, and Big League of PlayAction.tv dropped by Kukla’s Korner to give us some insight into this new age of fan-driven competition.

Paul Kukla:  Hi Big League.  What’s the driving force behind PlayAction and what can fans expect when they sign-up and play?

Big League:  All of our PlayAthletes are posed the same 8 questions, sent by text message to their phone, from which they predict certain outcomes in the game.  For example, how many points will Alexander Ovechkin tally tonight?  They then make their picks on their mobile giving fans a way to interact with each other by competing throughout the game.  The questions keep the game exciting right to the end.  Your team may be down 5-0 with 10 minutes left, but you still need to see if your choice, say “Pittsburgh Forward”, will get the last shot of the game.  It really adds excitement from the opening face-off to the final buzzer.

The cool thing is that you have a live “Game Jockey” who is watching the game and keying questions based on the action.

Continue Reading »

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

Morning Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the St. Peterburg Times,

Tortorella said, and Thrashers general manager Don Waddell confirmed, it took a commitment from USA Hockey to supply young players that are “ready to win” to seal the deal.

“We need to look by the old school,” Tortorella said. “We want players to go over there and want to play, not look at it as a chance for a vacation and then play some hockey.”

Tortorella stressed, “This isn’t a criticism of anybody else. It’s just something I believe in. You play to win. It’s a great situation in the changing of the guard.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: john+tortorella

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