Kukla's Korner

Press Conference Transcript—Mario Lemieux

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Q. It seems like you’re enjoying this, having some fun. When you bought the team out of bankruptcy, did you ever imagine it getting to this level consistently?

        MARIO LEMIEUX: Well, I knew it was going to take a few years, certainly, to build a great club in Pittsburgh. We went through a very difficult four or five years, as you well know in Pittsburgh, finishing last or close to last. Getting the draft picks that we needed to rebuild.

        Of course, the lottery didn’t hurt either, getting Sidney in Pittsburgh with Malkin and Fleury and Staal, and the rest of the gang that we have.

        So I knew it was going to take a while to get back on top, but now that we are, I think we’re well positioned for the next few years, at least with the core players that we have signed in the last couple of years.

        Q. What is your relationship like with Sidney and specifically in the playoffs? Do you talk to him? Do you talk hockey? What’s that like? And the second part, when you see what he’s accomplished this spring, does it put you in mind of when you were younger or Jagr was there?

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mario+lemieux

From The Chippewa On Down, The Dynasty Lives On.  It’s A Defending What’s Your’s Live Blog.

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

“From the Chippewa on down…”

That’s Lightfoot.  And he brings us luck.  He’s going nowhere.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Update From The JLA

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Many more Pens fans are at the Joe than last year.

Be prepared for a lot of towel waving.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Ready to Go

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Seth Rorabaugh of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette‘s Empty Netters is at the arena right now—you can check out his photos here.  He also linked the video below, from CBC’s opening broadcast of the playoffs back in April. 

A great video, and I thought it might be a good kick-off for tonight as well.

Puck drop, 1 hour 35 minutes, and counting…


Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, NHL Talk, NHL Playoff Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: stanley+cup+finals

It’s Not Personal, Says Bettman

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Tim Panaccio at CSN Philly.com:

Three separate times, Bettman stressed that his fight with Balsillie, which has been largely painted in Canada as a deeply personal one, wasn’t “personal” at all, but a matter of following league procedures and policy.

“The issue here is league rules and league processes and procedures,” Bettman said “… This is not just an NHL issue. This is not a Canada versus U.S. issue. This is not a Phoenix versus Hamilton issue. And this is certainly not a personal issue. Any notion to the contrary we think is simply off the mark.”

Bettman said he would welcome this issue before his Board of Governors.

“If and when the board is going to consider Mr. Balsillie as an owner, if I am asked an opinion I will express it,” Bettman said. “I’ll express it to the board first, before I express it to the world.  If in the final analysis, the owners conclude that he is somebody they would like to have as a partner, then we will vote him in. If in the final analysis they don’t think he’s suitable to be a partner, for whatever reason, they’ll conclude to keep him out. If their opinion is one they are interested in, I will express it to them when asked.”

read on for more from Gary Bettman’s press conference today, on a variety of topics

Update 6:30 pm ET: Much more from Bettman’s press conference can be read here, from the CP via TSN.

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink

3 Hours Til Game Time…Tick…Tick….Tick

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

And the longest Saturday in history drags on.

The CP’s Chris Johnston says via Twitter that Little Gary’s had this farce in mind for quite some time.

Bettman says back-to-back games to start Stanley Cup was planned a year ago: “We wanted to try something different.”

Right.  I think Gary Bettman’s a piece of trash and a liar. And I’ve thought that for more than a year. 

More Twitter updates from Bruce MacLeod...including what he believes are the matchups for tonite.

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Mistakes Etched Into History

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Andrew Duffy at the Ottawa Citizen documents the many small and large errors on the Stanley Cup—

Even hockey teams themselves could be victimized by bleary-eyed silversmiths. In 1963, the TORONTO MAPLE LEAES won the Stanley Cup; in 1972, the conquering BQSTQN BRUINS were carved onto the mug; and in 1981, the NEW YORK ILANDERS became part of Lord Stanley’s lore.

read on for a whole selection of engraving snafus through the Cup’s history

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

NHL Finances on Public Display

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Ken Belson at the NY Times:

Tussles like these typically take place out of view of the public because most teams are privately owned and disclose as little as possible about their finances. The secrecy gives them an advantage in negotiations with potential buyers, as well as creditors who want to get paid.

But because the [Phoenix Coyotes] and the company that runs the arena have filed for bankruptcy, this fight is taking place in court, where some of the Coyotes’ financial laundry — including a list of its creditors and the more than $100 million that they are owed — is being disclosed for everyone to see.

This may put the National Hockey League and its 29 other teams in an awkward position. Other teams and the companies that do business with them are surely happy to get a glimpse of at least part of the Coyotes’ finances. In an industry where operational data is closely guarded, any information that helps teams and their vendors benchmark themselves against their competitors is valued.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Wings Play-On Without Datsyuk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Shawn P. Roarke of NHL.com,

The loss of Datsyuk is particularly difficult for the Wings to take and it is taking an emotional toll on Datsyuk, as well.

Not only is Datsyuk—up for three end-of-season League awards, including MVP—a catalyst in the offensive zone, but he is the team’s best defensive forward. Babcock said Friday that when he plays, Datsyuk might hold onto the puck for 18 minutes a game because of his elite skill level.

But reality must supersede emotions at this point and Babcock understands he can only go with the healthy bodies he has at his disposal. So Ville Leino and Justin Abdelkader will be plugged into the lineup to replace the two injured forwards.

“We’d like to have him, but we don’t have him,” Babcock said after Saturday’s morning skate. “The way we talk about it here, when you put on the uniform you’re expected to play well. He’s not going to have one on tonight, so he’ll be a little more nervous than the rest of us probably.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pavel+datsyuk

No Pavel, No Draper

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Highly disappointing news regarding Datsyuk. I really thought he’d give it a go, or be allowed to.


Pavel Datsyuk and Kris Draper are scratches from the lineup for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final Saturday night.

Defensemen Nicklas Lidstrom and Jonathan Ericsson will be back in the Red Wings’ lineup against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Malik w/the pointer.


Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

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