Kukla's Korner

Leafs Need Defense

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From the CP via TSN,

“In a perfect world, we’ll take this team as an offensive-minded team and teach it to make the right decisions defensively,” said Maurice. “It’ll be a painful process for them.

“But then you have the chance to be a very, very good team.”

The Maple Leafs should also get better with the return of Tucker and defenceman Bryan McCabe, who has missed six games with a groin problem. Both would like to play Friday night in Buffalo or Saturday night at home against the New York Rangers.

more…

*Leafs currently have the highest goals-against in the NHL with 62, but are 2nd in the league for goals scored, with 53.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bryan+mccabe, darcy+tucker, toronto+maple+leafs

Scott Stevens Interview and Video Highlights

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Scott Stevens is another player being inducted into the HHOF on November 12th. From the NHL:

During his 22 years, Scott played in 1,635 regular season games, fifth most in the league’s history, scored 196 goals and added 721 assists for 980 points.  Won Stanley Cups in 1995, 2000, and 2003 with the Devils, and was the Conn Smythe Trophy winner as playoff MVP in 2000.  He also appeared in 13 NHL All-Star games.

Today he participated in a press conference with the media, and the transcript is below, as is a video compilation of his career highlights.

 

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: hockey+hall+of+fame, interview, scott+stevens

Kovalchuk Wakes Up With A Stiff Back

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution,

Ilya Kovalchuk was scheduled for a precautionary MRI Wednesday afternoon, the results of which probably won’t be known until Thursday.

Thrashers interim coach and general manager Don Waddell said Wednesday it was too soon to know if the back spasms that forced Kovalchuk out of Tuesday night’s win over Washington would cost him the Florida game Friday as well.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: atlanta+thrashers, ilya+kovalchuk, injuries

Mark Messier Interview and Video Highlights

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Mark Messier participated in a media conference call today, answering questions as he prepares to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame on Monday, November 12th.

In 25 NHL seasons Mark played in 1756 regular season games, the second highest total ever, trailing only Gordie Howe. He recorded 694 goals which is seventh all-time, and 1,193 assists, third all-time. His total of 1887 career points places him second all-time behind only former teammate Wayne Gretzky.
   
He won the Stanley Cup six times, the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP in 1984, the Hart Trophy as the National Hockey League’s most valuable player in 1990 and ‘92, and he appeared in 15 NHL All-Star Games.

Below is a transcript of today’s interview, plus a video selection of his career highlights, provided by NHL.com.

 

 

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: hockey+hall+of+fame, interview, mark+messier

The Nice Mike

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Keenan watchers in these parts have been waiting for the inevitable eruption, any sign that the legendary Iron Mike was ready to lose it on his up-and-down Flames’ squad. So far, there’s been none of that — and what passes for frustration has been mild compared to what coach Craig MacTavish may be saying about his Oilers or Alain Vigneault about his Vancouver Canucks.

It isn’t clear if this is a kinder, gentler Keenan or simply a craftier version, someone who knows that all eyes will be on him when things go wrong — and he refuses to take the bait and go bananas in public.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: calgary+flames, mike+keenan

Looks Like Nashville Is Staying

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,

The Nashville Predators won’t be packing their equipment bags for a move to Kansas City or anywhere else, at least not for the next three years.

Multiple sources have confirmed to THN.com a deal has been reached between the city of Nashville and a prospective local ownership group to rework the team’s lease at the Sommet Center that will guarantee the Predators remain in Nashville until at least through the 2010-11 season.

continued

added 3:32pm, from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,

No more minimum attendance numbers that lock them in for another 10 years. No specific break-even point. Nada. Now, it’s simply a question of whether the team is financially solvent – a vague term to say the least – that decides whether the team stays or goes.

So let me get this straight: Craig Leipold couldn’t make the business side work after a decade’s worth of attempts, but a more convoluted ownership collective is going to be successful in just a third of that span? And at a time in NHL history when the salary cap is expected to rise to above $60 million in the next couple seasons, bringing the salary cap minimum level up with it?

more

Update 11:45pm ET (alanah):

 

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nashville+predators

Caps Need Their Health Back

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from in the room at the Washington Times,

The moral of this story is, while the Caps might be deeper than last year, they just aren’t deep enough to overcome injuries to three impact players at the same time. The additions of Backstrom and Steckel and the improvement of Green (and Ovechkin on defense) has gone a long way to turn 7-1 and 5-2 losses from the end of last season into 4-3 and 2-1 defeats. But the Caps have to get healthy if they’re going to win consistently enough to get back in the playoff picture.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: injuries, washington+capitals

It’s All About Who You Know

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Tapeleg at Jerseys and Hockey Love has proven, yet again, that his life is endlessly cooler than mine:

I had Monday night off, and so I was able to attend another game at the Xcel Energy Center here in Minnesota. The thing that made this special was that I went as a guest of Branko Radivojevic. Trust me, I know. What the hell? Who the heck am I that I get to be a guest of a player? Well, the truth is, I had never met the man until last night.

Check out the whole post. Tapeleg and friends got a tour of the Wild locker rooms as Radivojevic’s guest, and there’s a pile of photos from the experience.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, NHL Media, Hockey Bloggers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: branko+radivojevic, minnesota+wild

Preliminary Rankings for 2008 Draft

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

Sharkspage highlighted the McKeen’s Hockey preliminary rankings today.  The rankings gauge the top-30 players heading towards the 2008 NHL Draft:

1 - Steven Stamkos, C Sarnia (OHL)
2 - Alex Pietrangelo, D Niagara (OHL)
3 - Drew Doughty, D Guelph (OHL)
4 - Zach Bogosian, D Peterborough (OHL)
5 - Kyle Beach, R/C Everett (WHL)

more at McKeen’s Hockey

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: 2008+nhl+draft

Hockey Concussions in the Courtroom

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Daniel Pearce at The Tillsonburg News,

However, Comper said that VandenBussche’s story “hangs together perfectly” with someone experiencing “post-traumatic amnesia” and with his history of hockey-related concussions, going back to age 12.

Smith also suggested that VandenBussche, who testified Thursday he was on medically prescribed steroids at the time of the incident, “slanted” his responses during the interview to avoid a criminal conviction.

Comper, however, said he found VandenBussche “quite naïve about concussions and what it meant.”  Commenting on hockey enforcers, Comper said: “The behaviour you see on the ice typically does not carry over off the ice.”

Earlier in the day, NHL director of hockey operations Colin Campbell testified as a character witness for VandenBussche.

more…

*Former NHL enforcer Ryan VandenBussche is on trial for assault.

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: colin+campbell, ryan+vandenbussche

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