Kukla's Korner

Bruins Talking

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,

“Obviously, we’re in a deep hole,” said Zdeno Chara. “We all realize that. But you have to win four games to get to the next round. It’s 3-1 and it’s not over yet.”

That said, the Hurricanes made the Bruins look like bantams for most of last night, with little resistance from the Black and Gold. The once-proud Bruins, now looking like paper tigers, have buckled at the exact point where winners strut their best stuff.

“I think our team has probably picked the worst time of the year to play their worst hockey,” said coach Claude Julien. “When you look at the whole team right now, there isn’t anybody that’s played up to their potential. Obviously, out of synch. Our passes are not crisp. We’re not in synch. You can see the frustration on the players right now. It’s certainly getting worse.

“This is something that has to be resolved before the next game. We don’t have much time to do that. You’ve come too far in the season to all of a sudden say, ‘You know what? It’s not working.’ We’ve got to find solutions. That’s got to come from coaches. And it’s got to come from players.”

more

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

Ovechkin Says Hit On Gonchar Was An Accident

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tarik El-Bashir of Capitals Insider at the Washington Post,

Opinions among the media varied regarding Ovechkin’s right knee to right knee hit on Sergei Gonchar at the end of the first period. Gonchar had to be helped off the ice and speculation around here is that it could be serious. We should know more in the morning.

We should also know tomorrow morning whether the league felt the hit warranted a fine or suspension.

“It tried to hit him and he tried to move to his left, and I don’t have time to realize what is going on and I hit [him with] my knee,” Ovechkin said. “It was accident. I’m not the kind of guy who wants to injure a player like this, especially [because] I know Gonch. I tried to hit him with my shoulder and he moved left but his legs were in the same spot.”

A couple of Penguins had a different take on it.

more and Bob McKenzie of TSN doesn’t expect a suspension.  If you missed the hit, watch it here....

added 8:14am, Craig Custance of Sporting News Today says it is hard to imagine the NHL suspending Ovechkin with the Capitals playing their biggest game of the year tonight.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexander+ovechkin, sergei+gonchar

The Unsuspendable

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

The NHL has given a surprising number of suspensions out so far in the playoffs.  There have been suspensions to Daniel Carcillo, Donald Brashear, Milan Lucic and John Tortorella.  The underlying philosophy behind the suspensions has been to show an apparent tough face by strongly dealing with goons and marginal players, but to not appear to decide any playoff series by punishing the stars who are most important to their team. That policy will be tested after the knee-on-knee hit Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals gave to Sergei Gonchar of the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight.  Gonchar left the game with a knee injury and is questionable for the rest of the series.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

Thinking Ahead

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stan Fischler of Game On,

Which compels me to bring Marian Gaborik to your attention, since he soon will be an Unrestricted Free Agent.

His price will be high and there’s a bit of a gamble involved. On the other hand, the returns can be immense. Just ask any Ranger fan who remembers Marian’s five-goal bonanza against the Blueshirts a couple of years ago.

I’m not forgetting that Gaborik spent most of this past season on the injured list, but these things happen and players do recover. I say that this is a gamble worth taking. We all know that the scoring issue depends in part on a successful power play. Regrettably, no such abundant PP was evident in 2008-09. And that brings us to a free agent or two.

How about Scott Niedermayer? In one fell swoop, Nieder would solve several issues. He’s a master quarterback, all-rink rover and, arguably, the best total player in the NHL.

more

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

Ovechkin Hit On Gonchar Tonight

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Watch the CBC view of the play…

added 8:54pm, via Scott Burnside of ESPN,

...just the replay a couple of times in the press box and it definitely looked like Ovechkin stuck out his knee and took Gonchar knee-on-knee as the Pens defenseman tried to spin away from the Caps star. Now, it’s not quite Bryan Marchment, but it was definitely a dangerous play. And seeing Gonchar writhing on the ice by himself while the play went into the Capitals’ zone on the delayed penalty was pretty scary.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexander+ovechkin, sergei+gonchar

Chicago Plans To Play A Patient Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune,

“Maybe we can put the pressure on them and get them on their heels,” Hawks captain Jonathan Toews said. “We’re confident we can win in their building if we play our way. [After] the last couple of losses people ask us if there is something we need to do to get our confidence back. I don’t think our confidence or self-esteem is going anywhere. It’s just at times we’ve had a few lapses and I think that’s the reason we’ve had two losses so far.

“If we start playing hard and start playing in their end, chipping pucks, and we don’t try and do it all ourselves, we can get that confidence, energy and momentum going our way. That’s how you win games.

“If we play the same patient game [we did in Game 2] we give ourselves a chance to win.”

more on the Blackhawks…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

First Hockey Cards Sell For $165,000

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Randy Boswell of the Ottawa Citizen,

A Vancouver collector has acquired what experts are calling the Holy Grail of hockey cards - a complete set of 45, century-old photo portraits of Canada’s top players in the days before the NHL was formed.

The unidentified buyer paid a whopping $165,000 for the postcard-sized relics, described by Quebec-based Classic Auctions as the first hockey cards ever issued and the “absolutely sensational cornerstone” of a renowned collection sold earlier this year by Carleton McDiarmid, a well-known Montreal hockey history buff who died last month.

Among the players pictured on the vintage cards - distributed during the 1910-11 season by the Sweet Caporal cigarette company - are legendary netminder Georges Vezina and famed sharpshooter Art Ross, for whom the NHL’s trophies for top goaltender and high scorer were later named.

continued

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

Sharks Will Face Their Fans

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via SanJoseSharks.com,

San Jose Sharks President and Chief Executive Officer Greg Jamison announced today that the organization will host their annual “State of the Sharks” function on Thursday, May 14 at HP Pavilion at 7 p.m.

The event, which will be open to the general public, will provide a forum for Sharks fans to ask questions directly to members of the organization as the team prepares for the 2009-10 season.

Scheduled to be in attendance along with Jamison are Executive Vice President and General Manager Doug Wilson, Head Coach Todd McLellan and players Joe Thornton, Dan Boyle and Joe Pavelski. Additional players may be added to the panel next week.

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

WXYT: Rafalski, Draper and Kopecky Out For Sunday

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Updated 1810: AP reporting, via the Freep, that Rafalski and Draper are “doubtful” as opposed to Kulfan’s “out”. 

Here it is, via the News.

Red Wings defenseman Brian Rafalski, center Kris Draper and winger Tomas Kopecky all have been ruled out for Sunday’s Game 5 against Anaheim at Joe Louis Arena, the team announced Friday.

Rafalski and Draper have “upper-body” injuries. Kopecky took a hard left-hand punch to the head by Anaheim’s Francois Beauchemin on Thursday night.

Who’s in?

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Most Bloggers Just Can’t Do It

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jason Whitlock at Fox Sports,

...Our neglect reminds me of the newspaper arrogance that allowed “kids” to cover high school football and basketball recruiting. We ignored the clear public demand for recruiting news and let a group of sports fans create Rivals.com, which sold for $100 million.

Now we have Deadspin, TheBigLead and an army of citizen journalists building followings and eroding our credibility by attempting to police the people who conceitedly refuse to police themselves.

For the most part, bloggers can’t do it. They just don’t know enough. Their instincts are horrible. They’d never think to wonder whether a writer would leak a coaches name as a job candidate as a favor for information down the line so the coach could leverage his current school into a fat raise. And if a blogger did think of it, he/she would be unlikely to have the wherewithal to do the necessary reporting.

Our industry has changed. There’s a lot less competition, which means it’s far easier for a journalist to operate in the shadows. There’s more room for corruption.

much more and no mention of hockey bloggers but more of a look at bloggers in general…

thanks to Neil Best of Watchdog at Newsday for the pointer….

Filed in: NHL Media, Hockey Bloggers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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