Kukla's Korner

Looking At Columbus

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Aaron Portzline of Puck-rakers,

Eleven days until the Blue Jackets take the ice for the start of training camp in Nationwide Arena. The coming season is even more in focus now, so I got to thinking. It won’t surprise me if ...

—Kristian Huselius (No. 1 unit) and Jakub Voracek (No. 2) are on the point of the power play

—R.J. Umberger has 50-plus assists

—Raffi Torres isn’t his old self again until December or January

—the Blue Jackets trade a defenseman (or two) before the start of the regular season

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Interested In Fighting

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Edward Fraser of the Hockey News,

Coming off a week that put me in a fighting mood, I figured it was a good time to have some fun and look at 10 of the NHL’s top pugilists.

Milan Lucic, Boston (13 fights in ’07-08)
He probably can’t throw with the heavyweights, but watching the young buck prior to concussion problems last season was still a true treat…oh, and he has the potential to develop into a top power forward, too.

continue for the other nine…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Yzerman All Class

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jim Boone at the Hockey News,

My fantasy hall of fame does not use the same selection criteria as the HHOF. My hall emphasizes players’ community contributions, longevity in the game and dedication to one team, as well as skill on the ice.

So, who are the charter members of my hall? The very first inductee would be Steve Yzerman. This guy is truly amazing. I won’t rant about all my memories of Stevie ‘Y’ and his generous spirit and amazing on-ice talent. I will, however, tell you a quick story about the size of this guy’s heart.

At a year-end beach party during the final days of my 11th grade in high school, a group of my friends were clowning around on a local Ottawa beach. An accident occurred and one of my peers was left paralyzed and wheelchair bound for his remaining days.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: steve+yzerman

A Spot On The Red Carpet

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adamk415’s Blog at NHL Connect,

Wednesday night, I got to attend my first red-carpet premier, for the fifth season of Entourage. I wanted to go because I knew Kevin Connolly and Jeremy Piven, who star on the show, are hockey fans…

So I get to the red carpet – actually, it was gray, with a white star in a black circle, part of the show’s logo, on it. There were little signs taped to the carpet to tell each media person where they should stand. NHL.com was at the end of the line, right next to Canadian E! I guess somebody figured let’s put the hockey folks and the Canadians right next to each other.

read on

Filed in: NHL Media, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Is This The Year Of The Canadiens

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Dye of the Detroit News,

The question now is whether the Canadiens can bring the Stanley Cup Finals back to Montreal to complete the celebration.

No NHL club has won more Cups than the Habs’ 24. The Maple Leafs have 13, the Red Wings 11.

What’s more, the only North American pro sports team with more championships than the Canadiens is the Yankees with 26.

This is an organization steeped in tradition with the greatest dynasties in NHL history. The Canadiens won five straight Cups under Toe Blake from 1956-60. They also won six titles in nine years from 1965-73 before Scotty Bowman coached them to four straight from 1976-79.

more plus a little CBA talk, most of which has been covered on KK.

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Avery To The Big Screen

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from The Hollywood Reporter,

New Line Cinema will presumably answer that question in a film about professional hockey player Sean Avery’s experiences as a summer intern at the fashion bible Vogue.

New Line, which is developing and will produce a big-screen account of his experiences in the fashion world and the relationships he made there, has hired Stan Chervin to write the screenplay. Contrafilms’ Beau Flynn and Tripp Vinson, who were behind New Line’s sleeper hit “Journey to the Center of the Earth,” will produce.

read on

In other hockey related news from The Hollywood Reporter,

Julie Andrews has earned her wings.

The actress will join Dwayne Johnson and Ashley Judd in Fox’s family comedy “Tooth Fairy.”

The film centers on Derek Thompson (Johnson), a minor-league hockey player whose nickname is the Tooth Fairy because of his ability to knock out opposing players’ teeth. Judd plays his girlfriend.

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sean+avery

Demitra Thinking Offense In Vancouver

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Elliott Pap of the Vancouver Sun,

The slick Slovak was rookie GM Mike Gillis’s highest profile free-agent signing in July and inked a two-year deal worth $8 million.

He will be expected to fill the offensive void created by captain Markus Naslund’s departure.

Demitra is not coming off a stellar season himself. He had only 15 goals in Jacques Lemaire’s suffocating Minnesota Wild system. It was one of the reasons he opted to move on.

The Canucks, of course, have not been an offensive juggernaut since head coach Alain Vigneault’s arrival in 2006 but Demitra has put his faith in Gillis, his former agent.

“Obviously I was working with Mike Gillis for many years and I know what he’s like,” said the 33-year-old forward. “I’m hoping they’re going to try and change it here and play a little more offence.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pavol+demitra

Jason Blake Feeling Great

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star,

“I’m doing great,” said Blake. “I was actually at the doctor last week. Everything is definitely managed. I’ve put it behind me. It’s good to be back and I’m ready to play. My mind is totally clear.

“It’s the best I’ve felt in 10 years. I worked hard this summer. I did a couple of different things to get ready for this year and hopefully it will pay off.”

That Blake seems to be winning his battle with chronic myelogenous leukemia is perhaps the best news of all. He was assured from the beginning it was a beatable form of cancer. Still, the news came as a blow.

“I didn’t think it would take that big of a toll on me. It did,” said Blake. “It’s unfortunate that had to happen.”

more

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

Devils Pattern Continues

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mark Everson of the NY Post,

The re-signing window is already open, but the Devils have not started preventing it from becoming their too-familiar barn door out.

Lou Lamoriello has yet to offer contract extensions to keep John Madden and Brian Gionta from unrestricted free agency next summer, and the Devils don’t have the greatest track record of retaining key players who finally reach UFA - Scott Gomez, Brian Rafalski, Scott Niedermayer, Joe Nieuwendyk, Bobby Holik, to name a few.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Lightning After Another Forward

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tim Wharnsby of the Globe and Mail,

While the NHL community awaits Sundin’s decision, his agent, J.P. Barry, confirmed two more clubs have recently expressed interest in his client.

Barry would not reveal the two new teams that have joined the Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, Vancouver Canucks, New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers in the pursuit of the veteran centre, but one is believed to be the Lightning.

Sundin not only met with Leafs general manager Cliff Fletcher last Friday and Canadiens boss Bob Gainey on Saturday in Toronto, he also played in the Right to Play charity game with his old buddy, new Lighting forward Gary Roberts, as well as new Tampa Bay owner Oren Koules.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mats+sundin

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