Kukla's Korner

The Savardian Spin, Phase 2

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Steve Buffery of the Toronto Sun,

New Jersey Devils goaltender and former Maple Leafs farmhand Scott Clemmensen will be having nightmares of Jason Blake for some time to come.

Blake pulled off one of the most spectacular moves in recent shootout history to score on Clemmensen last night at the Air Canada Centre and give the Leafs a 3-2 victory.

Toronto’s fourth shooter, Blake charged in on Clemmensen, slammed on the brakes in front of the net, did the old Savardian spin-o-rama, and then backhanded a shot past the bewildered Jersey goaltender.

“He was either going to be a hero or a bum, because anything can happen (with that move),” Toronto coach Ron Wilson said afterwards. “But I think it took a lot of guts to try that.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jason+blake

Fight The Right Way

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,

Instead of jumping Commodore from behind and delivering Wild West justice, Stuart wheeled in front of him so they were face to face, and demanded he stand up for his actions. Commodore agreed, they shed their gloves and fought.

“You don’t want to just grab a guy from behind,” Stuart said. “I made sure I got his attention before I dropped the gloves.”...

The civility of fighting traces its DNA to hockey’s roots: hardscrabble Canadian farm boys who would try everything to beat - and beat up - their friends and brothers, but do so with a sense of honor. As fighting has evolved amid its detractors’ insistence that it remains hockey’s Neanderthal corner, The Code has stood true to offer its puffy-knuckled brawlers some structure: Fight for yourself. Fight for your teammates. Fight to spark emotion.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Family Behind the NHL Player

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Helene Elliott in the LA Times blog, The Fabulous Forum:

Claude Giguere, father of Ducks goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere, died Monday in Montreal of an undisclosed illness. A former school bus driver, corrections officer and stoker on a navy ship, he bought J.S.—his youngest child—the boy’s first goaltending equipment.

In this 2003 story, published before the Ducks opened the Stanley Cup finals against the New Jersey Devils, you can get a sense of how down-to-earth Claude Giguere was and understand how J.S. has turned out to be the classy and upstanding person that he is.

For some reason, Elliott’s blog post only provides a link to the .doc file of her 2003 story (which you can download here) so I took the liberty of reprinting it below. If someone informs me of a web link available later, I’ll remove this printing and link to the Times source.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: claude+giguere, jean-sebastien+giguere

Rolston Goes To Crosby For Ankle Advice

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger,

Brian Rolston’s ankle wasn’t feeling as good as he had hoped.

Three games into his return from a high ankle sprain, the Devils winger decided to get some firsthand information about what he might expect. So one week ago, after a home game against the Pittsburgh Penguins, Rolston talked with Sidney Crosby.

“I don’t know if his was the same as mine, but his was an ankle, too. It was good to get a player’s perspective,” Rolston said. “The first few games back, no question I felt it. I didn’t know what to expect, so I had a conversation with Sidney Crosby. He just said it’s going to be sore and you have to try to strengthen it and to keep taping it.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brian+rolston, sidney+crosby

Vinny & Tocchet Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lightning Strikes,

Lightning coach Rick Tocchet met with captain Vinny Lecavalier for about an hour after Tuesday’s practice at the St. Pete Times Forum.

Tocchet did not get into specifics about what they spoke, but said the meting was a good one. Broadly, the coach said the discussion was about how the locker room can better police itself, especially after Saturday’s dreadful 2-0 loss to the Senators in Ottawa.

“He cares. He’s a great kid,” Tocchet said. “He’s learning what it takes. It’s not only about him playing. It’s about what his team should be all about.”

Tocchet talked about cleaning up some sloppiness in how the Lightning is conducting itself on and off the ice.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: rick+tocchet, vinny+lecavalier

Giguere’s Father Passes Away

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Dan Wood of Ducks Blog at the OC Register,

Ducks goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere is scheduled to back up Jonas Hiller in Tuesday night’s game against the New York Rangers at Honda Center and then leave the team to attend memorial services for his father, Claude, who passed away Monday morning in Montreal.

Giguere will likely miss Friday night’s opener of a three-game road swing against the Edmonton Oilers and rejoin the Ducks in time for a Monday game against the Vancouver Canucks.

Giguere left the Ducks for five days late last month to visit his father in Montreal.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jean-sebastien+giguere

Hemsky Playing Smarter & Scoring More

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Joanne Ireland of the Edmonton Journal,

At 25, Hemsky is still making his way to the upper echelon of the National Hockey League. With 29 points in 28 games, he’s moved onto the league’s top 30 scoring list. He’s 10th with 11 power-play helpers, and he heads into tonight’s game against the Chicago Blackhawks with points in 16 of his last 20 games.

There’s a consistency to his game that wasn’t there in the past. It’s a smarter, more effective game that he is playing.

“He wants to score now,” said linemate Shawn Horcoff, “and he’s shooting the puck a lot more, which is directly tied to him scoring. He’s always been a guy who’s been creative, but now he’s not holding it as much.”

“It’s part of the process. It’s growing up as a player,” Hemsky said. “I’m not wasting as much energy. I’m playing smarter.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ales+hemsky

Dream Stanley Cup Finals

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Sam McCaig of the Hockey News,

OK, it’s a little early to be talking about Stanley Cup final matchups, but all the talk of Christmas and wish lists has inspired a wish list of a different sort: five Stanley Cup finals I’d like to see (and they’re pretty realistic, too).

Without further ado:

1. Detroit-Pittsburgh
A 2009 rematch of the 2008 final tops the list. And maybe it’s the Penguins’ turn this time….

2. San Jose-Boston
The Sharks, as usual, are cruising through the regular season, winning almost at will. The big surprise is, so are the Bruins….

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Vote LA Kings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Gaborik is “Good to Go”

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From John Shipley at the Pioneer Press:

Marian Gaborik will return to the lineup for the first time since Oct. 14 when the Wild play host to Calgary on Wednesday night at Xcel Energy Center.

After a 90-minute practice today, Gaborik declared himself fit.

“I’m good to go for tomorrow,” he said.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: marian+gaborik

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