Kukla's Korner

Time For A Rangers Shake-Up

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

Rozsival’s game has gone from bad to worse. Redden’s has gone from bad to somewhat better to worse after a relapse the last two matches. Neither is the least bit physically involved. (Wait, that’s what both are - the least bit physically involved.)

Neither has been acute reading the rush. Neither has been decisive with the puck. Neither has been able to make the power play hum.

At the same time, neither has been benched for so much as an even-strength shift by coach Tom Renney. Neither has been scratched.

That’s not possible with the Rangers carrying the minimum six defensemen so that GM Glen Sather can burn up to $3.6M of cap space every night on three scratched forwards.

read on

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

Your All-Star Goalies

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mick Kern at the XM204 Home Ice Blog,

In the name of restoring some sanity to the choices for the 2008-09 NHL All-Star Game, I’ve cut through all the hype and hysteria, and come up with the six goaltenders who’ll be making the trip to Montreal.  No need to thank me.  Now you can go back to using the internet for what it was initially intended for, watching people make total fools of themselves on YouTube….

These three gentlemen are obvious choices; there’s no way anyone can construct a rational argument against them.

- Roberto Luongo - Vancouver Canucks
- Niklas Backstrom - Minnesota Wild
- Marty Turco - Dallas Stars

I know what you’re saying, what the heck is Turco doing on this list?  Have you seen this guy play recently?  Yes, indeed I have.  Turco has been a top notch goaltender over the past few seasons, and his fall-from-grace this fall has been stunning.  If anything, he’d be perfect for the All-Star Game, since everyone wants to see goals, goals, and more goals.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Start Hitting, Tampa

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lightning Strkes,

The final score sheet from Sunday’s game had one very interesting stat. It claimed the Lightning outhit the Devils 23-18 during a 7-3 loss. It’s a mystery to me what they were looking at to find 41 total hits, but it is even more perplexing to believe Tampa Bay had more hits.

A couple of smacks here and there by Evgeny Artyukhin and Ryan Malone were so startling, the fans gave them more of a cheer than they probably deserved. But that’s what happens when things like that become rare. Let’s face it, this team just is not built for any kind of physical game, and it’s a shame because more often than not, when a hit is made, a turnover is the result.

It’s frustrating for me, not as a fan of the team but a fan of physical hockey to watch games without much hitting. I can only imagine what it is like for Lightning fans to watch, not only opponents not be challenged but puck battles constantly being lost.

continued

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

Only 14 Hours Til Game Time

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Note to readers:  this post started out as normal as any other.  I have no idea where or why it took the turn that it did.  I’m just sayin’.

Man, there is no better way to start the short work week than a frigging 2200 faceoff way out West.  Uncle Mike’s found you a reason to stay up.

Vancouver Province

Babcock sang the praises of the Canucks emerging young speedsters, the team’s disciplined play without the puck and the team’s solid back-end.

And, he said with a big grin, he was intrigued by a Pavol Demitra quote in Sunday’s Province:

“I read in the paper that Demitra and the Sedins are the best line in hockey, so we’ll see if that’s true.”

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Math Sucks

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

A few days ago we posted a wishful little ditty about just how we can keep all three.  My thinking?  That the lure of multiple Cups would keep the current Wing core intact for next season.

That’s hope talking right there.  The voice of a fan.  Bruce MacLeod has a bit of reality for us all.

Marian Hossa. Henrik Zetterberg. Johan Franzen. Jiri Hudler. Mikael Samuelsson. Ty Conklin. Tomas Kopecky. I don’t want to see any of them leave the Red Wings next season.

But all of them are free agents. And it’s difficult to see where even one of them is going to make less money than they make this season. Many, however, are going to make significantly more than they’re making now.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Panthers Get A Wake-Up Call

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Dave Joseph of FloridaPanthers.com,

The message has been sent.

“I think everyone here should be on notice,” said Panthers’ coach Peter DeBoer early Sunday afternoon. “The status quo isn’t good enough… It’s not good enough where we’re sitting and there’s going to be consequences throughout the lineup because of that.”

It’s no secret that something has to be done and soon. The Panthers have the worst record in the NHL and have scored the fewest goals. And DeBoer and GM Jacques Martin said Sunday they will do whatever they need to “get this team to the level we think they should be competing at,” DeBoer said.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Fantastically: Jiri’s Time on Ice

Blog: KK Members Blog By ThinkinPink

Poor Jiri Hudler. Poor Kid. He has been patient for 3 seasons to get top 6 forward minutes, and just when it was about to happen, Marian Hossa decides to take a pay cut to join the Wings. Which forces Hudler from the 2nd line to the 3rd line. Despite lining up with Valterri Filppula and Kirk Maltby every night, Hudler has 18 points in 19 games! It doesn’t end there. Because of the Red Wings’ depth, Hudler is only getting an average of 12:31 of ice time.  Hudler notches a point every 13:22, which is second in the league for players who have played at least 15 games, behind Alex Semin (11:22).  Let us understand this: Hudler is a 3rd line winger, getting half the time of any top winger in the league, and is scoring at almost a point per game rate. Whoa. Take that Dan Carcillo (who scores a point every 194 minutes).

Fantastically, I don’t see why Hudler shouldn’t be owned in your league. He is one injury away from cracking that top-6. Tomas Holmstrom isn’t exactly made of steal, Johan Franzen has had his problems, so has Henrik Zetterberg. Injury is the last case scenerio we want to see Hudler getting more time, hopefully his play will eventually force Mike Babcock’s hand in sending Hudler out more often.

 

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
  Tags: jiri+hudler

Kovalchuk Needs To Play Like A Super Star

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from The Falconer of Do The Thrashers Have Large Talons,

lya Kovalchuk has the talent to be a superstar. He has the speed, he still has that ungodly release. He will certainly expect to be paid like a superstar when he negotiates his next contract. But if he wants to be treated like a superstar, he should play like one.

It is time for him to show up. The season started 19 games ago. I don’t want to hear any baloney about Kovalchuk not having quality linemates. Last season, Kovalchuk was centered much of the year by Todd White (who has never even been considered All-Star Game material), and a 40-year-old right winger who was dropped to waivers by his previous club (Mark Recchi).

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ilya+kovalchuck

As If They Needed This Reminder In Denver…

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Line of the day?  In my opinion, nothing you read today will compare to this from the Calgary Herald.  Scott Cruickshank led his game recap by mentioning the Flames faced a much different test last night then the one they’d passed earlier in the week against the Dive.

...even the Wings themselves know the edge they hold.

If they match the opposition’s energy, talent will carry the day - and, in that regard, the Wings are peerless. Losers only twice in regulation this season. Heck, the Wings have been outshot only twice.

The Avs they are not.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Scoring Up!  Why?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

• Yes, scoring is up, and it’s most likely the result of the pared-down goalie equipment - even if there is no way to prove it. Through games of early last week, clubs were combining for 5.9 goals per game, up from 5.6 over the same number of games in 2007-08. In 2003-04, the number stood at 5.1 over the same period. Me, I’m good with 5.1, as long as there is plenty of action and at least a little bit of hate.

• Brian Burke’s stepping down as general manager in Anaheim was abrupt but not unexpected. Look for the ex-Boston agent to get into serious talks in Toronto this week about taking over the Leafs. If there is a hiccup (read: money too light), watch for either the Blackhawks or Senators to get after him. Total dark horse: Habs.

more

I would think another reason scoring is up is the face-off always taking place in the defensive zone when a penalty is issued and the no TV timeout when an icing takes place.  Your thoughts?

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

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