Kukla's Korner

Dave Hunter, Past & Present

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Jim Matheson at The Edmonton Journal, via Faceoff.com:

Dave Hunter has three Stanley Cup rings, two that he keeps in a safety deposit box and the third he keeps around the house. He could flash it for some his oilfield clients, a little show and tell, but he doesn’t.

“My fingers got too fat ... the ring doesn’t fit like it used to,” said the self-deprecating former Edmonton Oilers winger, who has no trouble discussing his Battle of the Bulge.

Hunter, 51, says he’s about 280 pounds now, somewhat north of his robust playing weight.  When he quit hockey in 1989, Hunter laughingly said he would never set foot in a gym again. He has been in a gym, but not often.

continued… with a profile on life after hockey, plus some memories with the Oilers

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dave+hunter

Looking At Coach Patrick Roy

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Farber of Sports Illustrated,

Roy carries baggage—his temper, especially—but a lot of that luggage is high-end, Louis Vuitton-type stuff. He has conspicuous passion and undeniable hockey smarts. He also has an ability to motivate, at least at a junior level. While his combustibility might be incompatible with coaching pros, eventually some team is going to find out about his upside.

The one thing Roy does not have is the ability to sell tickets….

If Colorado does want Roy, it should be because they think he can remake the team, run a bench and handle players. The Avalanche should want him for the right reasons—as a coach, not a marketing tool.

more and some “tanking” talk too…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: patrick+roy

Staggering To The Finish

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Spector’s Blog at Fox Sports,

Looking at the recent NHL standings and the respective performances of some of the teams supposedly “battling” for playoff contention, I can’t help but wonder if any of these teams are really serious about making the playoffs.

Ok, I admit, that’s a harsh assessment, lots of things happen with a team over the course of a season, it’s never just one thing, there are always plenty of variables that affect performance, blah, blah, blah….

My point is that looking at the logjam for the final playoffs berths in both conference there are very few teams that actually appearing to be seizing the opportunity before them.

continued

added 12:04pm, from Tim Sassone of Between The Circles,

The Hawks have lost eight of 11 and look lifeless. There is no intensity, no fight, they lose battles and are getting outworked.

Everyone seems to want to fire GM Dale Tallon, but when does what’s happening fall on the coach? If you can’t get a team prepared to play at home against the Islanders and Colorado, then questions need to be asked.

more

added 12:18pm, from Steve Gorten of the Sun-Sentinel,

For now, the Panthers remain just one point out of playoff position, but they can’t afford any more performances like Tuesday’s. Not only were they shut out for the fourth time this season, they recorded zero shots on goal in the third period, tying a franchise low. They had 19 overall.

“They dictated. We sat back and didn’t do much. We were really flat,” defenseman Bryan McCabe said. “I don’t know what it is, but it’s unacceptable….”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Will The Stars Make The Playoffs?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Heika of the Dallas Stars Blog at the Dallas Morning News,

I’m not sure if they just don’t have it…or if maybe the other teams are just better right now….

If 88 points is the place the Stars need to be to have a place in the post-season discussion (because 88 points could get one team in and leave one team out), then is 7-5-0 too much to ask?

more on the Stars and below are the NHL expanded standings as of this morning…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Ruff Embarrassed By Loss To Ottawa

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

Following what has to rank as one of the more bizarre defeats of his 12 years as coach, Ruff aired out his team after it took nine mostly-foolish penalties to turn a two-goal lead into a 4-2 loss to the Ottawa Senators at Scotiabank Place.

“The message [from Ruff] we can’t really talk about right here,” said defenseman Henrik Tallinder. “It was not really good words.”

When Ruff emerged to meet the media, he lasted three questions and exactly 54 seconds. But his words were crystal clear.

“Very disappointed. Embarrassed,” Ruff said when asked how exasperated he was with this group. “I’m embarrassed for our fans, embarrassed for the way we played the last 40 minutes. It’s not acceptable this time of year.”

read on

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

Hit Them & Take Them Out

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I have to admit, on Monday and Tuesday I must have received between 40-50 emails from fans of the Philadelphia Flyers.  Most told me the Wings would not be able to compete with the physical play of the Flyers.

My simple response was, if the Flyers try to hit them and miss, look out, a goal may soon follow.

See the attempted hit on Datsyuk by Parent last night- missed hit, tying goal by Franzen.

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

Julian Plans To Get Bruins “Back On Track”

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Douglas Flynn of the Hockey Journal,

No longer is it a matter of taking home the President’s Trophy for the NHL’s best regular-season record or even holding on to the top seed in the Eastern Conference. Both goals are still attainable, but Western powers Detroit (103 points) and San Jose (100) have climbed past the Bruins. Boston still leads the East with 99 points, but New Jersey has closed within four points with two games in hand.

The Bruins aren’t conceding either race by any means. They just understand that even if they manage to squeak out either title, it will ring hollow if they carry their sloppy play into the postseason for another early playoff exit.

“Not as much as what we have to do to put our team back on track; I think that’s the most important thing right now,” said Bruins coach Claude Julien, asked about the priority of finishing in first. “If we get this team back on track then the standings will kind of take care of themselves. As much as we’d like to finish as high as we can, I think the main priority right now really has to be on fine-tuning our game.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Recap Of Brodeur’s Night

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Update 1:55pm ET: From Ken Campbell of The Hockey News, a look at Brodeur’s history:

Brodeur’s beginnings were not quite as inauspicious, but he certainly wasn’t thought of as a future superstar in the league. In fact, Brodeur was the decidedly second consensus pick in that draft to Trevor Kidd, who went to the Calgary Flames 11th overall.

At that time, our annual Draft Preview edition profiled the top 60 prospects, but only the top 21 – which consisted of the first round of the draft back then – were ranked in order. The other 39 were ranked in alphabetical order and Brodeur, who was projected to be a second-round pick, was among that group.

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: martin+brodeur

For The Sake Of The #1 Pick, Avs Should Continue To Lose

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,

This is why, if I were the owner of a last-place pro sports team, I would be involved in a mega-scandal involving thrown games: If I’m Stan Kroenke right now, my pregame message to the Avalanche the rest of the season would be: “This is a must-lose game tonight. Now go out there and tank it for the team!”

Should the Avs tank it so they can get the first pick in June’s NHL draft? Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Difference Between The Leafs & Rangers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,

Nik Antropov wants to stress that he is not slagging the Maple Leafs.

At the same time, the veteran forward admits noticing a difference between his former team and the New York Rangers, the squad he was shipped to at the trade deadline two weeks ago.

“The whole team is really close here,” Antropov said in a phone interview. “That’s something we never really had in Toronto the past few years.

“One of the reasons is all the new faces we had with the Leafs in the last two or three years. And then there were different coaches, different systems. That all plays a part in it.

“It’s not a shot at Toronto. I loved my time there. But I did notice the difference when I got here.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nik+antropov

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