Kukla's Korner

Deep Digging On Both Sides Of The Border

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Ahh, the Leafs are back in town. For one night, there should be some blood pumping at the Joe. Helene St. James/Detroit Free Press But they're an Original Six team, and for Toronto-area native Kris Draper, it doesn't get much better. "I really enjoy playing Toronto," he said Friday. "I think my dad gets a little bit more excited for this game than I do, taking on all his buddies back home in Toronto. It's fun. I've said it before: It's unfortunate that we don't play these guys more often. I know there's a pretty good buzz going around the Joe with the Leafs coming in."

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Back When Hate Was Good

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Today, if just for 24 hours, we should recall the happy era when nothing brought a family together like some unbridled hatred. Oh, you hated Dallas Drake the other night. But only for a moment, and it certainly wasn't the kind of hate that had the whole neighborhood lighting the torches. You hated Claude Lemioux for a year, but after Mac wasted him it was kind of a gleeful dislike. He got what he deserved and we loved to remind him of it. You also hated Patrick Roy. Now, Roy? That was a healthy hate. A prolonged hatred steeped in respect for his talent.

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It Is Not An All-Star Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Red Fisher of the Motreal Gazette,

Even Fitzpatrick has found it amusing. He says: "I have a good sense of humour and I'm taking it lightly. People have put a lot of time into it. There's a lot of stuff out there. I have to give them their props for putting so much time and effort into trying to get me in." My question is: who cares? The All-Star Game stopped being one when the NHL decided to turf the idea of the reigning Stanley Cup champions taking on the best of the rest, and the fact Fitzpatrick's 113,509 votes this week were more than any other Western Conference player tells you all you want to know about this bogus "competition."
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Draper Feeling The Special Atmosphere

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Detroit Free Press,

For now, though, the Wings will host only one Eastern Conference division per season. Tonight is one of those fortunate times, with the Toronto Maple Leafs coming to town. The Leafs are 0-5-1 in their past six games and have been outscored, 18-2, in the third periods during that stretch. But they're an Original Six team, and for Toronto-area native Kris Draper, it doesn't get much better. "I really enjoy playing Toronto," he said Friday. "I think my dad gets a little bit more excited for this game than I do, taking on all his buddies back home in Toronto. It's fun. I've said it before: It's unfortunate that we don't play these guys more often. I know there's a pretty good buzz going around the Joe with the Leafs coming in. You expect a real good atmosphere, and those are the games that are fun to be a part of. We know they're struggling, but when they come in here and it's Detroit-Toronto, there's so much history and so much pride in both organizations, it's a fun game to be a part of."
read on... and it is a shame, two teams only 4 hours apart, don't play each other more often...

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Spezza & Heatley Working Again

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Ottawa Citizen,

Spezza and Heatley are, were and into the future shall be, the Senators' one-two offensive threat. Brothers in hockey, Spezza is Frick to Heatley's Frack. They do everything together: hang out ("Church bingos," Spezza says with a wink), dine at each others' homes, watch hockey games and highlights, track league scoring stats ... oh, and score goals by the bunch. In the early season, those were losses that were coming in bunches. Pressure was building to bust up last season's deadliest pair in the Eastern Conference.
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Blueliner With The One-Liners

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Columbus Dispatch,

One-liners fly from the northwest corner of the Blue Jackets locker room, where Anders Eriksson has a seat next to the goaltenders. What a wall that is: two goalies and Bubba. Where’s Shemp? When Eriksson showed off a new spandex undershirt, he said, "What do you think? Superman, right? " After Rick Nash was slashed in a sensitive area, Eriksson said, "He took one in the next generation." When Eriksson was named the first star of the game in Colorado the other night, he said, "I finally found a guy who knows what he’s talking about."
continued

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Dmen Don’t Have Many Options

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Palm Beach Post,

Although defensemen say they're learning what they can and can't get away with "and un-learning what they've done their entire careers," they also say offensive players have learned to make the most of stricter enforcement by embellishing. "It's becoming more and more like soccer," Van Ryn said. "I've seen it a million times: If you get your stick anywhere around a guy's waist, they're grabbing your stick and falling down. "When you see guys who made a living standing in front of the net, taking hacks and whacks, and now they're diving, it's sad to see."
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14 Games On The Slate

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

A big day of hockey begins at 3pm today with the Rangers taking on the Senators. Make sure the DVR is ready to go and the batteries are charged for the remote.

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Would Leafs Move Sundin

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ken Fidlin of the Toronto Sun,

The scariest part of this Leafs muddle is that there is no clear solution. The very real fear is the team will have to get worse before it gets better, because the traditional methods of improving your stock have only limited effectiveness in a salary cap era.... Yes, Sundin has a no-trade clause, but if he was faced with the possibility of moving to a Stanley Cup contender, who is to say he wouldn't waive it? In February, he will be 36 and it's a safe bet, given the current state of the Leafs, that he won't be a part of any Stanley Cup run here. Before he runs out of gas or decides to retire, it might be wise for the Leafs to try to get at last something for the future.
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More Foot Problems For Foppa

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Delco Times,

Forsberg will undergo an extensive evaluation at Temple University Monday and then will fly to Montreal Wednesday to meet with representatives of the Bauer equipment company in hopes of constructing a skate boot that will fit his foot and allow him to play at or near his expected level. "I wouldn’t do any good on the ice," said Forsberg. "It feels like I can’t turn..For my own safety too..I don’t think it’ll be good until we find a skate that gets better and we find a skate that’s at least close to where I should be and can keep my balance. Right now it doesn’t feel like that at all." Forsberg backed out of the lineup after the team’s Friday morning practice at Continental Airlines Arena.
read on

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