Kukla's Korner

Are We Looking At First Round Upsets Again?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun,

Four years ago, the playoffs boasted one upset after another.

All four Western Conference clubs with home-ice advantage were dusted in the first round and Edmonton — the eighth seed — made it all the way to the Stanley Cup final.

The Oilers lost to a Carolina team which finished second in the Eastern Conference, but reached the championship without facing the No.-1 team from Ottawa.

We could see the same thing this time around.

Look at how the top clubs from San Jose and Chicago have fared since the Olympic break. The Blackhawks appear to be getting their game back in order, but don’t seem quite right having blown a few leads, while San Jose continues to struggle with consistency to the point pundits are already saying they’re ripe for the picking when the playoffs begin.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Hockey Player Movies

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adam Proteau of The Hockey News,

Let’s turn it over to reader Maxime Desruisseaux from Quebec City:

Salut, Adam. If you had a $100 million budget to produce a movie about the career/life of a hockey player, dead or alive, who would that be? Why?

Awesome inquiry, Maxime. I asked some colleagues at the THN compound and here’s what we’ve got:

Glen Metropolit: By now, many observant hockey fans are aware of Metropolit’s early days growing up in the rougher areas of Toronto, as well as the 11 years he spent globetrotting and bus-riding in European and minor pro leagues before he finally landed his first full-time NHL gig in 2006.

However, for everybody else, Metropolit’s story would resonate as a tale that’s a combination of 8 Mile and Rudy. If you could get Jeremy Piven or Jeremy Renner in the title role, I smell an Oscar!

more players…

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

How About Some Respect For The Twins?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Cassie Campbell of CBC,

Will Daniel and Henrik Sedin ever receive the respect they deserve? They have been called the Sedin sisters on occasion and I’m sure a few other ‘nicknames’ too, but let’s face it, they are both true superstars in the NHL.

Like Steve Yzerman, who was so often criticized as a player and leader until he won the Stanley Cup, the Sedin twins will probably feel the same wrath until they and their Vancouver Canucks bring home Lord Stanley.

At 29, they are still in their prime and based on their statistics this year, even though both players have played a shortened season due to injury, they have to be put into that elite category of players in the league.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: daniel+sedin, henrik+sedin

Testing Out Hockey Equipment

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Product testers at Reebok-CCM tell us about the importance of testing their equipment, and how it is done.

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

Two Comparable Teams

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from John Glennon of the Tennessean,

Cinderella, meet Cinderella.

There’s no indication officials will begin tonight’s game between the Predators and Phoenix Coyotes with that kind of introduction, but considering the circumstances it might be appropriate.

Heading into the season, it would have been hard to find a neutral hockey observer who saw much potential in either team.

Nashville was coming off a 10th-place finish in the Western Conference and made little noise during the offseason. Phoenix was coming off a 13th-place finish and was trying to recover from a disastrous offseason that began when former owner Jerry Moyes declared bankruptcy in May.


Filed in: NHL Teams, d, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Defining The Hits- Legal And Illegal

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Officiating, NHL Media, NHL Video, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Head Hit Rule Starts Tonight

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NEW YORK—Beginning with tonight’s games, the National Hockey League will implement a new rule prohibiting “a lateral, back-pressure or blind-side hit to an opponent where the head is targeted and/or the principal point of contact.”

Under the new rule, the NHL Hockey Operations Department is empowered to review any such hit for the purpose of Supplemental Discipline.

“We believe this is the right thing to do for the game and for the safety of our players,” Commissioner Gary Bettman said after receiving unanimous approval from the Board of Governors as well as the endorsement of the NHL/NHLPA Competition Committee and the NHLPA Executive Board. “The elimination of these types of hits should significantly reduce the number of injuries, including concussions, without adversely affecting the level of physicality in the game.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Chant Out Of Chicago- Go Wings Go

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tim Sassone of Between the Circles,

The last thing a Blackhawks fans wants to do is root for the Red Wings, but it’s probably the right thing to do these last few weeks of the season.

If the playoffs started on Thursday, the Hawks and Detroit would meet in the first round, which is not what anyone at the United Center wants.

The Red Wings are hot, however, and ended play Tuesday night eighth in the Western Conference with 87 points but only 3 points out of fifth place.

The Hawks would much rather face Los Angeles, Nashville, Colorado or Calgary in the first round than the experience and dangerous Red Wings.


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

NHLPA Supports Endorsement Of Hits To The Head Rule

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Toronto (March 25, 2010): Statement from NHLPA Executive Board regarding the League’s blindside hits to the head proposal: “We fully support our Competition Committee Members’ endorsement of the League’s proposal to implement supplemental discipline this season for blindside hits to the head.

Our agreement applies to the remainder of the 2009-10 NHL Regular Season, as well as the 2010 Playoffs. This temporary implementation will ensure that the joint NHLPA/NHL Competition Committee will have time to develop and consider a proper and full-time rule, one that includes an on-ice penalty component, this summer. We are encouraged by the League’s recent willingness to explore on-ice rule changes as a means of reducing Player injuries and have no doubt that by working together, a safer working environment can be established for all NHLPA Members.”

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Importance Of Faceoffs

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

There have been a few stories written about faceoffs on the blogosphere lately.  Jibblescribbits wrote a post of the Selke Trophy frontrunners that used faceoff percentages as a significant portion of his reasoning and behind the net wrote about faceoffs as well.  I think that both have over-emphasized the importance of faceoffs. I have written about this topic in the past.

When people begin to record non-traditional statistics (beyond goals, assists and penalty minutes), faceoffs are one of the easiest things to record.  The puck is dropped and one of two teams takes control.  It is a binary event.  Even in the most complicated case where the two faceoff-men tie each other up and a third player gains control of the puck, it is clear that there is a winner.  Thus it is easy to record statistics for faceoffs.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

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