Kukla's Korner

Where Are They Now?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Cullen of TSN,

Now that the Olympic break provides a few weeks to reflect on the NHL season to this point, I’m taking a look at the pre-season Power Rankings, generated at the beginning of September, and comparing them to the last rankings before the break.

Why are the surprise teams surprises?  Why are others disappointing?

WASHINGTON CAPITALS
Pre-Olympic Ranking: 1
Pre-Season Ranking: 5
The Reason: As great as the Capitals’ stars have been, they are also ranked higher than they were at the start of the season due to strong seasons from complementary types…

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Bond Developed Between Team USA And The Military

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dr. Michael Stuart of the Post-Bulletin,

The USA Men’s Olympic Hockey Team has developed a special relationship with our military and their families. Operation Homefront is a non-profit organization that provides emergency assistance and morale to our troops, to the families they leave behind and to wounded warriors when they return home….

Each USA player has been adopted by a wounded warrior from their home town, university or NHL city. They were informed that “you are not just playing for your country, but for your warrior as well”. A personal package was provided containing a letter of encouragement and various other items, even bullets taken from the soldier’s bodies to be placed in the player’s locker.

Brian Burke (Team USA General Manager) summed it up by saying that “the real heroes in America don’t wear hockey uniforms, they wear camo”.

more

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: team+usa

Team That Eats Together Plays Together

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Miro Cernetig of the Vancouver Sun,

The secret leaked that the Olympians might be coming to the restaurant. David Sidoo, the bistro’s owner who had arranged the dinner for the team, had to be vigilant for gatecrashers.

“Word somehow got out,” said Sidoo, waiting at the door as the team’s bus drove up. “We had people saying they’re with Team Canada security, people said they have reservations, all sorts of things to try and get in.”

I knew hockey players were pretty good dressers. I never dreamed they were such foodies.

“These guys, they wouldn’t even be here tonight unless it was going to be good,” said Babcock.

The players have been ensconced in the Olympic Village, eating the same meals as other athletes. Babcock says they haven’t been attending events or spending much time in public, fearing it might take time away from game preparation and their concentration.

more

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: team+canada

Morning Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“I felt like a soldier in Iraq for the first 20 minutes. Things were coming at me so fast from every direction. It’s different hockey. I’ve got to get used to it again.”

-Jaromir Jagr of Team Czech Republic after defeating Slovakia last night.  More on the game and Jagr from John Dellapina at NHL.com.

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jaromir+jagr, team+czech+republic

Sticker Shock

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from OrderedChaos (Mike Rucki) of On Frozen Blog,

I just received the annual email from the Washington Capitals to renew season tickets for the 2010-11 season.

This year’s increase in price? Approximately 32%.

Ouch.

Yes, the Caps’ current ticket prices—particularly for my seats in the front row of the upper deck—are not only significantly discounted from face value, but quite a bargain by league standards. According to The New York Times, 20 NHL teams charged more, on average, for tickets than the Capitals did in 2009-10.

Nonetheless, it was a bit of a shock seeing the new total invoice amount in a painfully-enlarged lump-sum.

continued

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

You Can’t Be In Two Places At The Same Time

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dan Mangan of the NY Post,

Star hockey players have killed their chance to win a $25 million lawsuit by going for the gold at the Winter Olympics, a lawyer for the man they’re suing said yesterday.

The NHL players, including Sergei Gonchar of the 2009 Stanley Cup champ Pittsburgh Penguins—now playing for Russia at the Vancouver Games—ignored a judge’s order to give depositions this week and next in California.

At least three other no-show plaintiffs are playing in the Olympics, while a dozen or so others are playing in other countries or are retired.

“I don’t think the judge is going to take kindly to it,” fumed Robyn Crowther, the lawyer representing golf-course developer Ken Jowdy. “They clearly violated the judge’s order, and we’re going to get the case dismissed.”

continued

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

Forsberg Lured By Gold

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Reuters,

It was the lure of more Olympic gold that prompted Forsberg to attempt a comeback and earn a place on the Swedish national team he has led for almost two decades.

“It’s definitely great to be back playing against the best players in the world,” a smiling Forsberg told reporters after Sweden opened the defense of its title on Wednesday with a 2-0 win over Germany. “I feel ok, it’s a work in progress.

“I played in the Swedish league, maybe 20 games this year and I’m scoring better-and-better every game.

“But at this stage of my career I don’t think I’m ever going to be really healthy again so I’m just going to do my best and see how it goes.

“I don’t know what I’m doing here but I’m still battling. Anytime you get the chance to play in an Olympics it’s the best thing you can do.”

read on

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: peter+forsberg, team+sweden

Thrashers To Winnipeg Rumor Shot Down

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ken Wiebe of the Winnipeg Sun,

Raise your hand if you’ve heard the one about the Atlanta Thrashers moving to Winnipeg being a “done deal.”

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly has heard the rumour and he was quick to pour cold water all over it Wednesday.

“There has been absolutely zero discussion at the league level of Thrashers to Winnipeg,” Daly told The Sun in an e-mail Wednesday night.

“There is no truth whatsoever to these rumours.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

No Rest For Ryan Miller

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,

U.S. men’s hockey coach Ron Wilson said Wednesday that the Buffalo Sabres’ Ryan Miller will be the starting goalie Thursday against Norway and throughout the Olympic tournament.

“Ryan will play every game unless something drastic happens,” Wilson said….

“This is the playoffs as far as I’m concerned,” Wilson said. “You usually go into the (NHL) playoffs with your hot goalie playing the last six weeks of the season and you don’t think during the playoffs I ought to give my backup some work because what if something happens to the starter.”

read on

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+miller, team+usa

Frustration Sets In

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NBC, get your act together when it comes to broadcasting Olympic hockey.

Hockey fans in the USA deserve much better than what you are providing.

The latest example, Sweden/Germany game tonight.  Had to switch to MSNBC (due to extended curling action_ to catch the game, then 8pm ET rolls around, Doc Emrick tells us switch to CNBC to continue watching the game, yet curling is on.

Four stations available to broadcast on and yet you can’t get the game on TV?

Again, hockey fans deserve better treatment than this!

Filed in: NHL Media, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nbc

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