Kukla's Korner

Laraque Takes Mom’s Advice

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Derek Van Diest of the Edmonton Sun,

“It’s still surreal. I live here in Edmonton and I haven’t lived in Montreal in a long time and I haven’t really gone back there in the summer.

“I think it’s going to hit home when I get there, when training camp starts and I get to wear the jersey for the first time. I don’t think it’s totally sunk in yet.”...

“My dad lives in Edmonton, my mom lives in Montreal. My mom was begging me to come back home.

“I love it here, if it wasn’t for the fact that my mom was there, I would have stayed here.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: georges+laraque

Donovan Talks Sens

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the North Bay Nugget,

He (Hartsburg) is going to take control of the room pretty good and just make sure we do things right, get the proper rest and be ready,” said Donovan, who expects to play a similar role with the Senators under Hartsburg.

I’m 33 now, so I try to be more of a leader in the room, but at the same time, you want to be that third-line player who goes out there and shuts other teams down and plays a good role.

I think they (team management) knew the big boys got pretty tired last season, so they want to make sure we get four lines going, because teams that win now have four full lines.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: shean+donovan

Morning Shot

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Don’t tell Gary Bettman this, but I haven’t seen a single sign of any National Hockey League paraphernalia anywhere in Beijing. It appears the NHL is just as popular in China as it is in the United States.

-Bob Duff at Duffer’s Dabbles

Filed in: NHL Media, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Wings Have Too Many Players

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from George Sipple of the Detroit Free Press,

Although the Wings will head to camp without a glaring weakness, there will be plenty of questions to answer.

The Wings have more legitimate NHL talent than they have available roster spots. Quincey, Derek Meech and Jonathan Ericsson will battle for the final spot on defense.

The Wings will get their first look at Ville Leino, 25, signed from the Finnish league in May. He’ll be vying for a roster spot against the likes of Darren Helm, Justin Abdelkader, Aaron Downey and McCarty.

The biggest questions among those projected to make the team are:

Will forward Tomas Kopecky be ready to play after having surgery on his left knee to repair a torn ACL and MCL?

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Blogger Helps Break Story- Columbus Prospect Quits

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Aaron Portzline of Puck-rakers,

Right winger Stefan Legein, the Blue Jackets’ second-round pick in 2007 and one of the top up-and-coming agitators, has decided to quit playing hockey.

I didn’t believe it either, but it’s been confirmed just a few minutes ago by the Blue Jackets. They got a call today from Legein’s agent, Doug Woods, telling them he won’t be at training camp and has decided to hang up his skates. He’ll be 20 years old in three months.

This story is shocking on so many different levels. Earlier today, I got an email from a Puck-Rakers reader, Bethany, of Bethany’s Hockey Rants. Actually, it was a “forward” of an email she got from an anonymous person in Ontario saying Legein had retired.

After a slew of phone calls to sources throughout the NHL, I finally got somebody to tell be off the record that’s it true. Just a few minutes ago, Blue Jackets general manager Scott Howson confirmed it.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: stefan+legein

Imagine If They All Left

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Mats Sundin may be getting all the ink, but he is not the only established, prominent NHL player unsure of his plans for the coming season.

Without nearly the same interest or fanfare, three of his contemporaries — Joe Sakic, Teemu Selanne and Brendan Shanahan — are all facing a similar predicament.

Call them the 4-S club, a quartet of future Hall of Famers pondering what a life without hockey might be like and not sure whether the time is right to walk away.

How dramatic would their departures be? Consider that with Jaromir Jagr shuffling off to Russia, that group represents four of the NHL’s top six active-points leaders. All, except Sundin, have won the Stanley Cup.

continued and good to see Eric back, hockey season must be getting close!

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brendan+shanahan, joe+sakic, mats+sundin, teemu+selanne

One-for-One Trades

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Cullen of TSN,

It rarely happens that two marquee players are involved in the same trade but, for argument’s sake, which NHL players are worth the most in a one-for-one swap?

Determining that answer is the exercise that I’m going to undertake here….

Some factors that need to be considered when trying to establish trade value:

1. Contract - It’s better to have a long-term deal, if the price is right for the production, because the team knows that they have that asset for a definite period of time….

Honourable Mentions:
Player: Derek Roy
Position: C
Team: Buffalo Sabres
Age: 25
Contract Expires: 2013
Salary Cap Hit: $4.0M

much more and very well thought out…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Risebrough says he has not had any trade conversations regarding Gaborik and has not gotten any calls from other GM’s (which I find hard to believe on the latter). He says he’s only concentrating on signing Gaborik before the Oct. 11 opener.

He wouldn’t answer hypotheticals when asked if he feels he’d have to trade Gaborik before the season if the winger makes it clear he won’t sign an extension.

Risebrough said he doesn’t plan to respond to any trade rumors during this process. “A lot of people on your side are fiction writers, and I’m not dealing with all the fiction writers. So the best thing is not to deal with any of [the rumors].”

more at Russo’s Rants

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

Tampa Needs To Get Defensive

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Spector at Fox Sports,

If Smith and Kolzig struggle it’ll not only cost the Bolts on the scoreboard but could also damage the confidence of their defense corps.

Getting the best out of his goalies and young defensemen will be a significant challenge for head coach Melrose, who must prove that he can adapt to the new NHL after being out of the coaching ranks for so long.

The Lightning’s new ownership and management have certainly proven their willingness to make take bold steps. It remains to be seen if that boldness will be rewarded.

more

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

Afternoon Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

“Obviously a player of Mats Sundin’s stature…he’s been a tremendous player for a long time,” said Holmgren. “He’s a free agent, and we’ve made inquiries as to his status. We don’t know whether he’s going to play or not. I think Mats is still trying to decide that in his own timeframe. But, if he wants to play, we’d certainly have an interest in seeing if we could fit him in.”

-more from Paul Holmgren at Flyers.com…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mats+sundin, paul+holmgren

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