Kukla's Korner

After One Month

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,

The NHL season is only a month old, but it’s never too early to look at the good, the bad and the ugly.

The bad? Gary Roberts doesn’t have a point in a dozen games for the Tampa Bay Lightning. He still has a big heart but perhaps his legs have given out at age 42.

MOST IMPRESSIVE STARTS

1. The Sabres gulped hard when they matched that $50-million offer sheet for Thomas Vanek in the summer of 2007, but he’s already got 11 goals.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Battle Of Team Canada Goalies

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,

Of course, it could still be Martin Brodeur in net for Canada when the 2010 Winter Olympics open in Vancouver in 15 months.

But there were enough folks wondering about what age either has done to Brodeur’s game or will have done by Vancouver that he certainly wasn’t a lock to be the No.1 goalie for Team Canada when this season started….

Roberto Luongo, of course, is considered the heir apparent to Brodeur. But the Canucks missed the playoffs last spring and are facing a long, tough battle to make it this year, so there’s no certainty that Luongo will have the opportunity come April to make his case for ‘10 by taking his team on a long playoff run.

Then there’s Carey Price, still just 21 years old. The Canadiens started Jaroslav Halak in a 4-3 shootout loss in Columbus last night just to save Price for centre stage tonight at the Air Canada Centre on national television against the surprisingly potent Leafs.

more

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The NHL Have-Nots

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Matthew Sekeres of the Globe and Mail,

If you were looking for reasons why the Phoenix Coyotes lose in excess of $20 million U.S. annually, they were sitting there on press row – all the way down press row. The Coyotes had 28 credential holders, none of them independent media outlets – at GM Place for a 1-0 loss to the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday….

All of it seemed funny, if not for the fact that the Coyotes are NHL have-nots, siphoning money from Canada’s six profitable franchises. In that sense, Canadian ticket-buyers were funding this excursion.

more

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

I NOW Consider Sergei Fedorov A Hall Of Famer

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

I like to try to pick the point in a player’s career where they establish themselves as a Hall of Famer.  They have to have Hall of Fame credentials that will remain untarnished regardless of what happens or does not happen for the remainder of their career.  Here are the standards I use to decide if a player is Hall of Fame worthy.  Today I am ready to declare that Sergei Fedorov has reached that level.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

Madden Idolized Gilmour

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Mark Everson of the NY Post,

Like local kids who idolized Mickey Mantle or Derek Jeter, John Madden had his hero as a youngster in Ontario - Doug Gilmour of the Maple Leafs.

When Madden arrived from college for his first Devils training camp in 1997, there was Gilmour, acquired by New Jersey from the Leafs during the previous season. In that moment, Madden was an awestruck hockey fan.

“He was pouring himself a coffee and I was just waiting. He looked at me and said, ‘Do you want a cup? Here, take this one,’ ” Madden recalled. “You wouldn’t believe how many phone calls I made back home to tell my friends and my family.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: doug+glimour, john+madden

All Steven Stamkos

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bill Eichenberger of the Sporting News Today,

Question:  What has it been like playing for Barry Melrose?

Stamkos:  He’s a very positive coach.  If you do something wrong he will tell you in a way that you realize you made a mistake…. Everyone enjoys him in the room.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: steven+stamkos

Bolts Made Trade For Cap Room

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lightning Strikes,

But the bottom line, it seems, is the money. Carle’s salary cap hit, thanks to a four-year, $13.75-million deal, is $3.438-million. Eminger’s cap hit on his one-year deal is $1.2-million. That’s a savings of $2.238-million that lowers Tampa Bay’s team cap number to about $52-million. The limit is $56.7-million….

Asked if the trade of Dan Boyle, which in great part was done to shed his six-year, $40-million contract,  now should be viewed as a failure, Lawton said, “I think it’s a continuation of the process in evaluating what we have and being comfortable we have the right chemistry and the right balance and enough youth in the organization. It’s one younger player for two younger players. ... When we went through it, we felt t was something that made sense.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Breaking Down Al Strachan

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Chris Botta of NYI Point Blank,

Two weeks ago Al Strachan reported that Lightning co-owner Len Barrie was designing the team’s power play. Last week on Hockey Night in Canada the longtime hockey reporter said there was discontent on Long Island. Strachan discussed an alleged shouting match between Scott Gordon and Bill Guerin and mumbled something about the team - oh no! - having to do a pair of charity events. You can watch the segment here, if you have a few minutes to waste.

This is what Al Strachan does. It’s what he’s been doing since the invention of the goalie mask. That is, when he’s not making Nazi references about Jewish media relations executives.

Here’s the tried-and-false Strachan formula:

Find a team that’s losing, preferably far away from his Toronto base so he can turtle.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, NHL Media, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Hot Hockey Hatred

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The Maven explains why… 

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

Tocchet Returns To Philly

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Chuck Gormley of the Courier-Post,

Flyers assistant coach Craig Berube, a former teammate of Tocchet, believes the NHL’s two-year ban on Tocchet was too harsh.

“He got run through the ringer for no reason, and that puts a bad taste in your mouth,” Berube said Friday. “To me, that was worse than anything. He didn’t do anything wrong, and his picture’s all over the paper. He’s a good guy with a good reputation. The guys who know him know that, and that’s what matters.”...

Flyers defenseman Derian Hatcher said he’s happy to see Tocchet back in the NHL, saying gambling among NHL players is commonplace.

“I’ve bet on Super Bowls and I played football pools in the dressing room,” Hatcher said. “So what? He never bet on hockey, and that’s the important thing. I’ve always respected him, and personally, I’m glad he’s back.”

more

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

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