Kukla's Korner

A Tampa ‘Stinker’

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lightning Strikes,

I’ve been watching the Lightning for a long time and I have to say I believe the team should be ashamed of that performance against the Panthers. Florida is not even on the same page as the Lightning as far as talent, so for Tampa Bay to get just 24 shots (four in the first period), allow two power play goals to the worst team in the league with the man advantage was unacceptable.

And it should be unacceptable to the team. I am really interested to see how they come out against the Red Wings.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

How To Rebuild

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from NYI Point Blank,

If the model for rebuilding the Islanders into a true contender at some point this century is the Pittsburgh Penguins organization, we might as well all call it a day.

The Penguins were awful for five consecutive seasons. They blew the good kind of chunks, the kind that get you…

So how about a more realistic model, like the Washington Capitals? After the lockout, Caps GM George McPhee stripped the payroll to the salary cap floor. The team and its fans had to suck it up and take the pain….

The Capitals are not there yet, but their revival last year was one of the NHL’s feel-good stories.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Devils Need To Turn Their Game Around

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tom Gulitti of Fire & Ice,

Right now the Devils are digging themselves a hole that they might not be able to climb out of.

They have lost three in row and four out of five since Martin Brodeur tore his left biceps tendon on Oct. 31 against Atlanta. They’ve won only two games of their last nine games (2-5-2) since opening the season 5-1.

They’re trying to stay positive, but there’s a lot to be negative about.

It’s not nearly all the goaltenders’ fault. They’ve gotten decent enough goaltending to win at least one more of the five games they’ve played without Brodeur, probably two. But in the last three games, Kevin Weekes and Scott Clemmensen have allowed at least one bad goal in each game.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Bar Has Been Set

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sean McCormick of Sportsnet,

Effective Wednesday, the NHL has increased the penalty for elbowing from two minutes in the penalty box to two games in the press box.

That is the reality of the situation following the two-game suspension that the league handed Jarkko Ruutu for his “elbow” on Maxim Lapierre last night in Montreal. For the record, Lapierre was not injured and Ruutu was penalized two minutes on the play…

By entertaining the whimpering Habs, the league has set a dangerous precedent. Bryan Murray said as much today, inferring that a precedent has now been set.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, NHL Officiating, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Ales Hemsky: Mr. HON Candidate

Blog: KK Members Blog By ThinkinPink

Ten games into the season, Ales Hemsky looked like he was going to finish the season at a point per game pace. Satisfying? Not quite. He may have finished the season with 82 points, but it looked like they were all going to be assists… on the powerplay, no less. However, come game 11, not only did he start scoring goals (notice: plural), but he started showing why critics have been so harsh on him in the past: he has the talent to score not just 82 assists, but 82 goals, but has failed to put it together in a full season.

For his opening act, he dangled through Braydon Coburn and then proceeded to give Martin Biron headspins. The second goal of that game was a sequel of the first. The next 3 games, he continued to score. These goals were not cheap either. A rocket over the shoulder Steve Mason, a one handed poke after a steal by Marc-Andre Fleury, and 1 vs 4 against the Devils defense. Four games, five goals (even some even strength!), and 5 TSN Highlight of the Night candidates. I have watched TSN since a child, and I don’t think any other player in NHL history can make this claim: their first 5 goals of the season were all HON candidates.

Hemsky has given the boost that the Edmonton Oilers needed to endure the season long 7 game road streak that they just completed in New York, where Hemsky provided the shootout winner, and kept the Oilers’ within the top 8 in the competitive Western Conference. Not only this, but has also supplemented the scoring that has been missing from sophomores Andrew Cogliano and Sam Gagner.

We are now at 15 games into the season. Hemsky has 15 points, with 5 goals - 5 more than I expected him to have. He is on pace for 27 goals. The question remains: can he possibly have 27 HON candidates?

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: ales+hemsky

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“It’s not the way we play defence, it’s the way we turn the puck over in such bad situations that you can’t play defence because you’re on the wrong side of the puck.

“They (Pittsburgh) got three goals on turnovers two feet from the blue-line. They got two goals on fly-bys where we don’t stop at the net on defence.  “Then, we took penalties 200 feet from our net. Now, what team am I describing? But that’s the team I coach so oh, oh . . . “

-Wings coach Mike Babcock.  More from Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mike+babcock

Get Your Offers Ready

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

In a day of returning phone calls to his dozens of friends and associates on press row – after all, Brian Burke did a stint as an analyst for TSN during the NHL lockout – the most interesting piece of information that he shared was the fact that the Anaheim Ducks would circulate a letter, in one week’s time, permitting him to seek employment elsewhere in the league….

The Ducks did Burke a big favor by delaying, for one week, his pending free agency. In effect, it gives all the potential suitors for his services – the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Boston Bruins, the New York Rangers and maybe one or two others as well – seven days to prepare their offers.

read on

added 9:04pm, from Mark Whicker of the OC Register,

Sometimes two and two do make four, and sometimes rumor becomes real. But Burke knows he’ll be trading low-voltage comfort for a 24/7 fishbowl in Toronto.

He also knows what lies ahead for the man who brings Toronto a Cup. Do they have knighthood in Canada?

“They’d be naming schools after the guy who wins there,” Burke once said.

They ought to name the upper rows of Honda Center seats after Burke. Thanks to him, and his wide-angle perspective, people actually sit there.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brian+burke

Setoguchi Part Of The Sharks Success

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP,

The San Jose Sharks have been tearing their way through the NHL so far this season.

And while the success has been partly due to strong performances from usual suspects like Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and Evgeni Nabokov, it’s hard to ignore the contributions of Devin Setoguchi.

He bounced between San Jose and the team’s AHL affiliate in Worcester last season, but has found some serious stability early in his second year as a pro. Setoguchi is currently playing on the Sharks top line with Thornton and Marleau.

“I got a chance of a lifetime to play with two of the best players in the NHL,” he said Wednesday. “I’m just trying to make the best of it right now.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: devin+setoguchi

Because I’m An Honorable Guy

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

I’ve paid my debt to the PensBlog.  It hurt, but I did it.  And I feel I was able to share some of your sentiments.

November 11th was a great night for hockey. Hopefully, the 6,000 American viewers who watched on Gary’s barnyard-porn/outdoor life network will spread the word that when two great teams get together—even in the regular season—it’s as good a spectacle as you’ll find in sports.

But November 11th doesn’t equal June whatever the hell the day was that we won the Cup. It just doesn’t.

At least that’s what I’m telling myself today.

More here.

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Ondrej Pavelec Recalled By Atlanta

Blog: Hockey News Wire By Paul

The Atlanta Thrashers have recalled goaltender Ondrej Pavelec from the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League, according to Executive Vice President and General Manager Don Waddell.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | Hockey News Wire | Permalink
  Tags: ondrej+pavelec

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