Kukla's Korner

Gratitude for Past Coaches

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Neil Stevens at the Canadian Press,

Doug Cook, Dick Power and Mario Pouliot are names that won’t ring a bell with most Canadian hockey fans but players skating in the NHL’s championship series owe them a debt of gratitude.

There are dozens more just like them, too. They are the coaches who taught and encouraged the boys that would become the men competing for the Stanley Cup this spring.

Darren Helm, at 21 the youngest player to skate for the Detroit Red Wings in these playoffs, quickly mentions Cook when asked to name a minor-league coach from whom he benefited. Helm was eight when he was first coached by Cook in St. Andrew’s, Man.

“The encouragement he gave me - that’s what I remember most,” says the soft-spoken Helm. “He made playing hockey fun, and he always believed I could go far.”


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

Juggling the Salary Cap in Philly

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Lyle Richardson at The Hockey News,

GM Paul Holmgren would like to re-sign restricted free agents Jeff Carter, R.J. Umberger and Randy Jones, but with over $47 million already committed to next year’s payroll, Holmgren probably won’t have enough cap space to retain the three even though the upper limit is expected to rise to around $56 million next season.

Holmgren also has to consider whether to retain any of his unrestricted free agents. Vaclav Prospal, Jason Smith, Jaroslav Modry and Jim Dowd fall into that category and if speculation in the Philadelphia media is anything to go by, Holmgren will cut those players loose and focus on re-signing his younger talent.

But not retaining his impending UFAs won’t solve Holmgren’s cap problem; he’s going to have to consider other options.

more… plus a look at the Dallas Stars

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: contracts, free+agents, salary+cap

Monday Talk with Therrien

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

The transcript of Coach Michel Therrien’s remarks today.

Q.  What’s your power play need to do to change its luck tonight?

        COACH MICHEL THERRIEN:  You have to look at the big picture about our power play.  And I thought we got some quality shots last game.  We didn’t get the bounce we were looking for.  We got some traffic.

        Our power play, we’re second in the playoffs.  The only teams that is ahead of us is Calgary.  They played one round.  So there is no sense to panic with our power play.  Special teams are crucial, we all know, and could make a big difference in games.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: interview, media, michel+therrien, quotes

Gameday with Sidney Crosby

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Transcript from this morning’s Q&A with Sidney Crosby.

Q.  I’m just wondering what you’re expecting in terms of line combinations for tonight.  Do you expect to start the game with the same two linemates and play the whole game with them, or do you expect this to be jumbled up quite a bit tonight?

SIDNEY CROSBY:  Probably like practice the last couple of days.  I think that’s usually a pretty good indication.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: media, quotes, sidney+crosby

Join Chara on Kilimanjaro

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Brian Costello at The Hockey News,

The Boston Bruins defenseman will be climbing Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro the first week of July for the humanitarian organization Right To Play. And he’s leaving open a spot on his climbing team to be taken up by the highest bidder in an eBay auction. Check it out now at [eBay] and you might turn out to be his lucky climbing partner. Bidding ends on Thursday.

Chara is challenging hockey fans everywhere to raise $5 for every foot he climbs in support of his fundraising goal of $100,000 for Right to Play programs. Kili rises 19,340 feet off the plains of Tanzania. All proceeds from the eBay auction to join Chara benefits Right To Play, which uses sport programs to aid the development of children and youth in underprivileged areas of the world.

Having been fortunate enough to climb Kilimanjaro with my wife in 2001, I have two words of advice for Chara and his climbing partners: Poli, poli. That’s Swahili for ‘slow, slow.’


Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: charity, mount+kilimanjaro, zdeno+chara

Afternoon Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

About 15 minutes later, in what was mostly a deserted press room by then, Babcock poked his head in and said “the Mule [Franzen] is in. Pass the word.”

via Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: johan+franzen

Monday Morning with Babcock

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

The transcript from today’s press conference with Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock.

Note: Babcock’s comments notwithstanding, Bill has updates on Franzen, as does Eric Duhatschek.

Q. Here we go again. Latest on Johan Franzen.
COACH MIKE BABCOCK: I don’t even know that. I don’t know the answer, sorry. I was talking to the League guys, and I never got in the medical room to know. I know he’s out there flying around. And I know it’s decision time.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: johan+franzen, media, mike+babcock

Mule’s In

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Multiple media sources confirm.  Franzen’s in.

The Detroit Red Wings will get a big boost with the return of one of their leading scorers.

Swedish forward Johan Franzen has been cleared to play for Game Two of the Stanley Cup Final Monday night against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Franzen has been suffering from concussion-like syndromes and has not played since Game One of the Western Conference Final against the Dallas Stars.

Frazen competed in a full practice Sunday and appeared ready to go.

“It’s better, I don’t feel anything anymore.  It’s good.  There will be so much adrenaline, it doesn’t matter what shape you’re

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Gang of Wings

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Eric McErlain at AOL Fanhouse,

Can anything stop the Red Wings in their quest to win their fourth Stanley Cup in 12 years?

To get some answers, I thought it would be a good idea to check in with two of the leading lights among the Detroit hockey blogging community. Today I’ll be talking live to both Bill Houlihan of Abel to Yzerman from the Kukla Empire and George James Malik of Red Wings Snapshots at mlive.com. When it comes to Detroit hockey, both are hip deep in the middle of things, so I expect a lively and provocative hour.

We’ll be kicking off our discussion at 12:00 p.m. U.S. EDT, so come ready with your questions. And yes, if you must, bring along the snark.

Go here to join them at noon. (But seriously: you don’t need to bring the “snark”—with Bill in the room, I’m pretty sure the room will be thick enough with it…) smile

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: hockey+bloggers, media

One Short Elevator Ride - One Lasting Impression

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Girls in the elevator: We are here to see Soundmurderer (see Detroit’s Electronic Music Festival).

Me:  I am here for the Stanley Cup Finals.

A distinguished elderly woman in the elevator whispering (too loud) to her husband:  That’s Gerry Fisher!

Girls:  Who is Gerry Fisher?

Me:  Some fighter.

Jiri Fischer looks at me and smiles.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jiri+fischer

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