Kukla's Korner

Meet Joe Sacco

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,

While Sacco’s predecessor, Tony Granato, was well-liked by his players, privately there was some sentiment within the organization that he treated players differently and he wasn’t demanding enough of everybody. One thing Avalanche players say about Sacco is that he has the same standard for everybody.

“He holds guys accountable,” Avs captain Adam Foote said. “There aren’t any gray areas about what he wants from us and expects. But at the same time, he isn’t just screaming at us or maybe being unfair. I’d say what I’ve noticed so far is he’s tough, but fair.”

Sacco, 40, has always demanded a full day’s work, most of all from himself. Sacco, along with brother David, played together at Boston University. Of the two brothers who grew up under the Medford, Mass., roof of Joe Sr. and Maria Sacco, older brother Joe was the “serious” one.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: joe+sacco

Kessel Proves His Worth

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,

Now that the all the hype and hoopla are over, here are 10 things we learned about Phil Kessel last night from his Maple Leafs debut—one for every shot he had on net.

1. In recent weeks there have been suggestions that the deal to bring Kessel to the Maple Leafs for two first-rounders and a second-round pick might be one of the worst in franchise history.

After Phil The Thrill’s electrifying performance last night, can we put a temporary gag order on such talk please? It is far too early to make such claims. And, after watching Kessel oozing his raw offensive skills last night, you can see why general manager Brian Burke paid such a heavy price to land this talented kid, who has yet to reach his 23rd birthday.

If the Leafs finish dead last and the Boston Bruins get the top overall selection in a deep 2010 draft, the criticism will be legit. But let’s at least give Kessel a chance to prove he’s worthy of Burke’s risky gamble.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: phil+kessel

Where Will Forsberg Play?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jeff Z. Klein of SlapShot at the NY Times,

Russian news outlets reported on Tuesday that Peter Forsberg, the 36-year-old Swedish superstar, was on the verge of signing with the K.H.L. champions Ak Bars Kazan, adding to the intrigue over which club in which country Forsberg would land as he continues his comeback from chronic foot and ankle problems.

And Forsberg’s own comments on Tuesday, in which he dodged questions on where he would resume his pro career, added fuel to speculation that he would not be returning to the N.H.L., as had been widely speculated in North America.

continued

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

Heatley Grievance Can’t Be Good For NHL/NHLPA Relations

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Allen Panzeri of the Ottawa Citizen,

In less than two years, the National Hockey League and the NHL Players’ Association will have to begin negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement, which ends in September 2011.

Against that backdrop, it can’t be a good thing to have them facing off now in a dispute over a $4-million signing bonus paid to one of the game’s superstars. But that’s what they have on their hands, a battle that could set the emotional level for the next round of contract talks….

Even if it was Heatley who demanded a trade, he did have a no-movement clause in his contract, which did give him the right to veto a trade, however unpalatable that may seem. Melnyk might be stuck by the very contract he approved for Heatley.

However, at the time the possibility of a grievance was first raised in early July, league deputy commissioner Bill Daly said there are “strong grounds upon which a claim can be pursued. The Ottawa franchise believes it has been damaged.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dany+heatley

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“In my opinion, there’s nothing more I can do.  made a hockey play. There’s a lot of opinions out there that say that’s a clean hit. And then to hear all four referees tell me it was a clean hit. They had a pretty good view of it too.

“For me to get a two-game suspension … nothing I can really do about it.”

-Ducks defenseman James Wisniewski on his two game suspension.  More from Eric Stephens of Ducks Blog.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: james+wisniewski

Swine Flu Or Not?  The Levee’s Gonna Break And We’re Gonna Live Blog It

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Pretty sure every one of you has H1N1, which is why I’ve kept my distance today.  Oh, I was tempted.  The discussion that just wouldn’t end about points and won/losses and hookers…a thriller. 

Thank god it’s almost game time on Little Gary’s Closed Circuit TV Station.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

All Those Stats

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Cullen of TSN,

Taking a look at one of my favourite sites, behindthenet.ca, here are some statistical leaders from the first month (or so) of the season:

The league leaders in penalty differential (drawn - taken):
Patrick Kaleta, RW, Buffalo - plus-10
Mason Raymond, LW, Vancouver - plus-9
Steve Downie, RW, Tampa Bay - plus-7
Dustin Brown, LW, Los Angeles - plus-7
Devin Setoguchi, RW, San Jose - plus-7

The other end of the spectrum:
Hal Gill, D, Montreal - minus-9
Shane O’Brien, D, Vancouver - minus-6
Sidney Crosby, C, Pittsburgh - minus-6
10 tied at minus-5

mucn more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Play Of Vinny Lecavalier

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damian Cristodero of Lightning Strikes,

“Well, Vinny knows he’s struggling, and he’s got to get some passion in his game,” coach Rick Tocchet said. “He knows it. I talked to him about it. It’s not just scoring. He’s the captain of the hockey club, and it’s not just him. But he’s the main figure on our team. We’ve got to get him going. He has to show us that he’s ready to play. He knows it. There’s no better stage than tonight in Toronto. I’d be very surprised if he didn’t sow any passion tonight.”

But Lecavalier wasn’t sure “passion” was the right way to describe what his game has been lacking.

“I think I’m working very hard,” he said. “I just think things aren’t working out. I think everybody is working hard but sometimes you’ve got to work smarter than harder. You’ve got to work hard but you’ve got to works smart, too. I just seem to be thinking too much. Maybe start playing with more instincts.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: vinny+lecavalier

We Knew That

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Chris McCosky of the Detroit News,

There’s been some chatter on the internet hinting that the Red Wings were among the teams in Sweden this week to scout Peter Forsberg, who is healthy again and competing in the Karjala Cup tournament.

The Wings may very well be scouting that tournament, but I just exchanged emails with Ken Holland and he very clearly said the team had no interest in Forsberg.

Chris, I know you are new on the beat this season so a little bit of advice.  The internet hinting comes from a guy who just wants hits on his website.  Case closed.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, NHL Media, Dwayne, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: peter+forsberg

Hey, No Cuts In Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Wes Gilbertson of Sun Media,

The Calgary Flames reportedly jumped the queue for H1N1 vaccinations, and that has some members of the Sea of Red seeing red.

The Flames received their shots Friday, one day before the province temporarily shut down clinics, saying they would eventually reopen but only be available to high-risk Albertans.

“I’m hearing from people,” said Flames CEO Ken King.

“I’m hearing from fans this morning and I intend to speak with them and try to help them understand why we would make a decision and what criteria under which we made that decision and again explain to them that we ... appreciate that not everyone will agree.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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