Kukla's Korner

Blue Jackets Learning As They Go

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bob Hunter of the Columbus Dispatch,

For the young Jackets, seeing how the Red Wings elevate their competitive level has been a staggering experience. They didn’t know it would be like this.

“I don’t think it’s just been our young guys,” Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock said. “I think it’s been an eye-opener for anybody that’s played them. I think it’s been an eye-opener for people watching on television, I think it’s been an eye-opener for our team.

“I’ve said this before: These are unbelievable lessons. This is exactly what you need to grow. You need to have these games so you just don’t talk about the level, you’ve got reference points all the time.

“We’re a team that’s got the reference points. Our players are going to get better daily.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Playoffs Are Here

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Gary Loewen of the Toronto Sun,

You know that the playoffs have begun when a different set of words and phrases is introduced into the hockey lexicon.

a) The “face wash” becomes an acceptable offensive tactic.

b) The “playoff beards” sprout, in part to take the sting out of the face wash.

c) The dreaded “pond scrum” in front of the crease delays a multitude of faceoffs.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Hockey Win Compared To Battles Of Lexington And Concord

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Greg Wyshynski of Puck Daddy,

Gather round, class: Professor Edwards wants to tell you about how the Bruins are like patriots who have thwarted the tyranny of the Habs. Or something like that. If you can remember the last hockey goal call that began “234 years ago yesterday, a bunch of rag-tag farmers stood up against the greatest fighting force in the world,” we’d like to hear it.


from Seth Rorabaugh of Empty Netters,

But tonight, Edwards crossed the line in our book.

He basically compared the Bruins 4-2 win in Montreal to war.

We assume Edwards has never had anyone in his life impacted directly by war. Because if he had, he would not have made such a stupid, ignorant statement.

more and either watch the video below or watch it at the links you are about to click…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jack+edwards

Homer Hoping For A West Coast Cage Match Between Sharks/Poultry

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

And he also told the Sporting News’ Craig Custance, the best hockey writer in Detroit, that his health last season at this time was “a mess.” 

And as for what he anticipates in Columbus tonite?


Read the rest here.

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Suspension For Burish?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tim Sassone of Between The Circles at the Chicago Daily-Herald,

Flames coach Mike Keenan wants Adam Burish suspended for what happened near the end of Monday’s game in the altercation with Rene Bourque.

“I’m disappointed they weren’t given a match penalty for deliberate attempt to injure,” Keenan said. “A cross-check to the face where Burish broke his stick over his face. He suffered an injury because of that cross-check to the face. I have no idea how the referees could miss it. It was blatant.”

It’s beautiful how poor Mike claims his player is a victim when the Flames have been allowed to get away with one cross-check after another after whistles when goalie Miikka Kiprusoff makes a save.


added 7:33am, watch Keenan’s post-game press conference below…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: adam+burish, rene+bourque

The Battle Of Styles

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Phil Sheridan of the Philadelphia Inquirer,

As the noted philosopher Scott Hartnell observed yesterday, playoff hockey “isn’t rocket science.”

There is some physics involved, though, in terms of velocity and mass and impact. There is also more than a little bit of sociology, as the NHL finds itself in a transition game between the Bad Old Neanderthal Days and the ideal of a physical but fluid collision (but not violent) sport.

So much of the tension in this suddenly interesting series between the Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins is the result of this conflict. The league’s on-ice officials are mandated to call penalties for any stickwork above the waist or any clutching or grabbing that impedes the flow of the game. Like most team sports, hockey has been trying to legislate more offense into its game.


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

The Perfect PK

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Helene Elliott of the LA Times,

In a few days the Ducks have gone from nearly-missed-the-playoffs to placing their skates above the tightening throats of the San Jose Sharks, from playing with fire often enough to torch the penalty box to still playing with fire but quenching their blazes surprisingly well.

The Ducks’ penalty killing ranked 23rd in the NHL at 79.7% this season, one of many areas that suffered while defenseman Francois Beauchemin recovered from knee surgery. It wasn’t for lack of practice—the Ducks were the second-most penalized team and were short 76 more times than they had an advantage—but the penalty killers were erratic.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Early Playoff MVP

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

Teams have played either two or three games each at this point in the playoffs.  I think it is the earliest meaningful point to try to pick an early playoff MVP.  I think the clear choice at this point is Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins.  Malkin leads the playoffs in both goals and points with four and seven respectively. 

Malkin is carrying on his dominance from a regular season where he won the Art Ross Trophy.  His offensive totals have made large jumps every season in his young NHL career (from 85 to 106 to 113 points).  If he has another jump like that next season, I think many people will begin to call him the best player in hockey (and some people are already making arguments of that nature). 

Malkin is off to a great start in the playoffs so far.  Will he keep it up and help the Penguins have a deep run?

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

Capitals Produce Some ‘Dirty’ Goals

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

In what was a rare sighting in the opening two games, we saw Washington players fighting their way to the Rangers’ net, taking hits to make the right pass, and getting their faces smashed in the glass to keep the cycle going in the offensive zone. There were sacrifices made all over the ice.

Consider the opening three goals Monday night, a pair from Semin and a rebound goal from Brooks Laich. All three tallies were from within 15 feet of the net. That’s a dirty area of the ice that’s painful to access. But good things happen when you’re willing to fight your way there.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Post-Season Has Not Been Kind To Tkachuk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Matthew Sekeres of the Globe and Mail,

When Keith Tkachuk calls it a career, which won’t be this summer, he will go down as one of the greatest Americans to have played in the NHL.

But there is an uncomfortable truth about the 37-year-old forward, whose hair and beard are now primarily grey, and it seems to be continuing this spring. The St. Louis Blues are facing playoff elimination, down three games to none to the Vancouver Canucks in a best-of-seven Western Conference quarter-final, and are climbing a mountain of history to erase that disadvantage.

For Tkachuk, first-round exits are par for the course. They have happened 10 times in his 12 postseason appearances, and it’s about to be 11 of 13 if the Canucks can win tonight in Game 4 at the Scottrade Center.


Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: keith+tkachuk

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