Kukla's Korner

The Maturing Of Dustin Brown

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Terry Frei at ESPN,

In 2003, winger Dustin Brown arrived in the Los Angeles Kings locker room as a reserved teenager with a slight lisp that sometimes made him additionally self-conscious.

One of his teammates was Luc Robitaille, and Brown almost felt as if he should walk up to Robitaille in tandem with Robitaille’s son, Steven, and ask for his allowance.

“I was closer to Luc’s son’s age than to Luc’s age,” Brown said with a smile after the Kings’ morning skate in Denver on Tuesday.

Only five years later, his maturation and transformation are stunning.

Brown’s relentlessly energetic, pedal-to-the-metal game and his tendency to play far “bigger” than his listed 6-foot-1 and 203 pounds remain attention-getting, but he also has progressed so far as a leader, the “C” on his sweater this season seems to fit.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dustin+brown

Talking About Bouwmeester

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from George Richards of On Frozen Pond,

As expected, the local buzz surrounded Jay Bouwmeester and his contract. The general consensus around here is that Jay won’t be with the Panthers (big shock), and that Edmonton could offer some serious jingle to get their hometown boy back. I don’t think Jay will sign here to play under a microscope, and two people I talked to up here agree with that assessment. The Oilers are going to try to get him, though.

Pete (DeBoer) on Jay: ‘‘He’s been outstanding. I didn’t have a real appreciation for how good he is. He has that unique combination of speed and range where he can shut down the best players on every team. He’s also found his offensive game, something that started last year when he put up 15 goals.

more on Bouwmeester and the Panthers as the prepare to face the Oilers tonight in Edmonton…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jay+bouwmeester

All Geoff Courtnall

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Travis Paterson of the Victoria News,

Q: Who was the greatest NHLer you ever played with?

A: “I’ll give you my top four. “Gretzky, No. 1. Cam Neely, No. 2. Pavel Bure, No. 3 and Brett Hull.

Q: Who did you find was the toughest NHL player to play against?

A: “Toughest guy to play against was (Chris) Chelios.”

more from Courtnall who is coaching the Victoria Grizzlies

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, Non-NHL Hockey, Minor League, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: geoff+courtnall

You Have To Watch The Winter Classic

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: winter+classic

Marian Hossa Has No Regrets

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From TSN:

He turned down a multi-year offer from the Penguins and is reported to have rejected an $81 million, nine-year offer from the Edmonton Oilers for what he felt was his best chance to win a championship.

But then came the credit crunch, falling stock prices, rising unemployment and the very real chance that NHL clubs will have fewer dollars to throw around for the next batch of unrestricted free agents in July.

“I know the economy is not great now, but no regrets,” Hossa said Thursday on a conference call. “I came here to Detroit for one reason and that was to go all the way.

“We’ll see at the end of the year if it was the right step, but for now, it’s been a great experience - winning and playing for a great team. That’s what I was looking for.”

continued…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: marian+hossa

They Will Be Golfing In Early April

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,

So here are four teams I’m ready to say are out of the playoff picture as of today – and the punishments I’m willing to accept if they defy the odds and continue to play once the regular season is done:

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS

I feel awful for long-suffering Blue Jackets fans. But I cannot in good conscience put any faith in a team that currently has a 9.9 percent power play efficiency rating.

That’s right – nine-point-nine stinking percent. Is it possible to decline penalties like they do in the NFL?

If They Make The Playoffs, I Will: Attend a Blue Jackets game wearing a Civil War-era military uniform and sit quietly while Doug MacLean regales me with his draft record as Columbus’ GM.

read on for three more teams that won’t make the playoffs…

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

Ducks Anxious To Play Sharks

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ducks Blog at the OC Register,

The Ducks know what it’s like to have the start that San Jose has had, because they tore through the first quarter of the schedule in similiar fashion during their Stanley Cup run two seasons ago.

Now the tables are turned. The Ducks will go into HP Pavilion on Wednesday night trying to take down a Sharks team that is 22-3-2 and 14-0-2 at home.

“The way they have been playing, I think we’re all anxious to see where we’re at,” right wing Teemu Selanne said.

San Jose has collected 46 points out of a possible 54, and it’s not reflective of a weak scheduling quirk: The Sharks defeated Stanley Cup finalists Pittsburgh and Detroit in consecutive games on Oct. 28-30.

more

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

Those Practical Jokers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ulf Samuelsson at the Hockey News,

The most successful teams I’ve been involved with have had a healthy balance of respect and humor. Obviously, you need to win a certain amount of games to have any fun. When you’re having fun, it allows you to relax and get away from those stressful times when you really need to focus and bear down.

You need to be respectful of your teammates who like to concentrate the whole day, especially on game day. While you let them be on their own, the guys who always mess around and have fun with each other do that somewhere else.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The NHL Hour with Cam Neely

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Boston Bruins VP Cam Neely  will be the guest on today’s edition of NHL Hour with Commissioner Gary Bettman.  The show is on now, from 4-5 p.m. ET on XM Satellite Radio (204) and Sirius (208).

You can also listen live online at the NHL Network Online once the show starts.

* While on the air, listeners can call into the show at 1-877-645-6696, or send questions/comments via this email address: nhlhour@nhl.com
**Archived shows available for download via podcast on NHL.com.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: cam+neely, gary+bettman, media, nhl+hour

The Unbalanced Early Season Schedule

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

We are over two months into the NHL season.  That should be long enough to get a pretty good gage on how well teams are doing so far this year.  There are many factors which may need to be put into context to properly make sense of the standings.  One of them is a huge home/away imbalance exists at this point.  On one extreme, the Edmonton Oilers have played 18 road games but only 8 home games so far.  On the other extreme, the Los Angeles Kings have only 9 road games to go with 17 home games.  It should be clear that teams that have spent most of the first two months of the season on the road are probably performing below their expectations and teams that have spent most of their first two months are home are probably performing above expectations. 

While I do not expect that every casual hockey fan has noticed this fact, I expect better from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News.  He writes the misleading sentence:

In Edmonton, it’s difficult to be cheery, what with the Oilers having won just three home games this season.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

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