Kukla's Korner

Senators Now In A Playoff Race

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun,

Just two months after referring to his Senators as one of the top five teams in the league and predicting they’d go “deep” into the playoffs, owner Eugene Melnyk was somewhat more reserved with his comments Friday.

In fact, Melnyk had to address the possibility that the Senators might yet be guilty of one of the greatest collapses of all-time and miss the post-season tournament altogether.

“I have absolute confidence that with the players we have and the coaching staff we have, we will obviously make the playoffs,” Melnyk said in an interview on Toronto’s FAN 590, before adding in his usual brash fashion: “There’s no question in my mind and once the playoffs start, it’s a whole new ballgame and our guys are going to rise to the top.”

That’s not the easy sell it once was, to be sure.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Eleven Games Today In The NHL

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

First puck drops just after 1:00pm ET today.

Also, don’t forget the free preview of the NHL Networks begins today.

View today’s NHL schedule below…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Interference Or Not

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

If the league’s got any desire of actually fixing these type of mistakes by referees and show them when they’ve blatantly erred, I’d hope referee Stephane Auger has an email waiting for him Saturday morning from Director of Officiating Terry Gregson with a video clip.

There is no way any rational league executive can look at the replay of Kris Russell’s tying goal and say that R.J. Umberger didn’t blatantly break Rule 69.1 (interference with a goaltender), which in part reads, “The overriding rationale of this rule is that a goalkeeper should have the ability to move freely within his goal crease without being
hindered by the actions of an attacking player. If an attacking player enters the goal crease and, by his actions, impairs the goalkeeper’s ability to defend his goal, and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed.”

Auger blew it, plain and simple. Sometimes this rule is gray because the goalie will stray outside the blue paint. In this case, it is plain as day. Harding’s in the blue. Umberger backs into him BEFORE Russell’s shot gets there and Harding is impeded from making the save.

more and watch a video of the goal although the interference being suggested can only be seen at the end of the video…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: kris+russell

A Point Gained Or A Point Lost

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Brian Rafalski of the Detroit Red Wings scored with two/tenths of a second left on the clock which gave the Wings a point in the standings.

Edmonton won the game in a shootout in a game I am sure Detroit fans were looking for a victory.

How will that one point be looked at when the regular season is completed?

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brian+rafalski

Flames Finally Hear Some Cheers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,

After weeks of consternation, peppered with catcalls and boos throughout many of their recent home dates, the Flames earned uproarious praise last night.

As part of the latest twist in the Flames seasonal drama, the lads were cheered off the ice after taking a 2-0 lead over San Jose into the first intermission.

After upping their lead to 4-1 in the second the masses broke into an unabashed “Go Flames Go.”

Just like old times — ya know, before the Slide n’ Purge of 2010.

The mood was such that the locals even threw a few fists in the air in support of “Pretend to be an NHL Team Night” at Rexall Place, where the Oilers’ early 2-0 lead over Detroit drew love. And hope.

read on

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

Talking College Free Agents

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,

A new season within the NHL is upon us, one that does not get the same kind of media attention as that other free-agent season that starts July 1.

Unfortunately, thanks to changes in the last collective agreement that are only now being felt, the U.S. college free-agent signing season, which starts in early March as the college season ends, is expected to get progressively less important in the next few years.

While teams are still hoping to sign the next Andy McDonald or Chris Kunitz or Mason Raymond or Tyler Bozak, there will be fewer college free agents because more and more Canadian and U.S. 18-year-olds, headed for the National Collegiate Athletic Association instead of the Canadian junior ranks, are being taken in the NHL entry draft.


Filed in: NHL Talk, Non-NHL Hockey, College Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink

LB: Wings Promenade Through Edmonton

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By VooX

The Wings return from spring break in Kelowna, BC, and face an Edmonton squad that has been fuched by Jobu even worse than we have this season.  Not to mention last season, and the season before that.  Let’s face it, Edmonton is a cursed city, and the Wings would be best to promenade through Edmonton as quickly as possible with another WIN tonight.

While the media have been regaled with stories about golf and ski-dooing, our crack (smoking) team of A2Y interns have uncovered the real story about the Wings spring break.

Filpulla reveals how he spent the last few days in Kelowna:

Rollin down the street, smokin indo, sippin on gin and juice
Laid back with my mind on winning and winning on my mind

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“I’m just happy we found something right for both myself and the team. Obviously, we have most of our core guys signed, and signed for long, and it’s something we’re excited about in the room. I believe in those guys, I think we believe in ourselves, and in bringing the Stanley Cup here this year — we don’t want to wait. Now is our time.

“That’s the goal. It’s our goal, to win a Cup for the fans. They’ve been waiting long enough.”

-Ryan Kesler of the Vancouver Canucks.  More on Kesler from Cam Cole of the Vancouver Sun.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+kesler

The Current State Of The NHLPA

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lester Munson of ESPN,

In the four years since the 2005-06 National Hockey League season was lost to a lockout over an inability to come to a collective bargaining agreement, NHL players have:

• fired the executive director who led them during the lockout.

• hired two new executive directors.

• and fired both of them.

So maybe it shouldn’t be surprising that the players are attempting to draft a new constitution for their union and search for yet another new executive director while they simultaneously try to figure out how their organization has been unraveling. And over all of that, the next CBA negotiation looms. The current six-year deal runs out after next season unless the players extend it to a seventh year, which is their option. (Given the state of the union, that’s a likely scenario.)


Filed in: NHLPA, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Advertising In The Minor Leagues

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Diego Vasquez of MediaLife,

Minor league baseball teams are known for their outrageous promotions, such as bobbing for onions night, dress like a baby night and nickel beer night.

In the cold winter months, when baseball is in hibernation, minor league hockey teams take up their mantle, giving advertisers a chance to reach an audience made up mostly of families by sponsoring these silly but fun contests.

Advertising at minor league games is much more affordable for marketers than advertising at the pro level. And more families attend these games because it’s a lot cheaper than going to NHL contests.

The minor leagues are also much less stringent in their advertising guidelines than top-level sports leagues, meaning advertisers can get very creative.

continued (not your normal KK topic, but an interesting read)...

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, Minor League, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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