Kukla's Korner

The Votes Are In

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,

With the Academy Awards on Sunday, the ratings-starved NHL should be thinking about its own Oscar show. So with apologies to Roger Ebert ...
Best Actor: Gary Bettman. Never one to let empty seats or flat-line TV numbers faze him, the commish keeps going to the podium to put on a happy face.
Best Supporting Role: Evgeni Malkin for The Sidney Crosby Story, just edging out Ron MacLean and the Sedin twins (dual eligibility).

more... and some trade talk too…

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Will “The Rock” Be Ready By October?

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

from Mark Everson of the New York Post:

The head of the Meadowlands doesn’t know how the Devils can do it, nor what they’ll do about it.
“I know construction, and I don’t think there’s any way that they’ll have that building [in Newark] ready,” N.J. Sports and Exposition Authority head George Zoffinger told The Post.

“They don’t even have all the roof trusses up. There’s no way they can complete that,” Zoffinger said.

continued

 

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A Friendly Exchange

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

Where was George Birman when we really needed him?
A Penguins employee, he serves as the team’s Russian translator.
Where was he when the Penguins’ Evgeni Malkin hooked up with the Washington Capitals’ Alex Ovechkin in the bowels of Mellon Arena early last night after the Penguins’ 3-2 win?
Wouldn’t you have loved to been a part of that little chat between the two good friends and former Russian national teammates?

continued

 

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More Than Window-Shopping

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

from Mark Spector of the National Post:

Step inside the mind of a National Hockey League general manager, with their winter get-together opening this morning in Naples, just eight days before next Tuesday’s trade deadline. There are 30 GMs, but no two share the same set of factors that shape their willingness to deal.
There is a Don Waddell, whose Atlanta Thrashers have never made the playoffs. Their lead atop the Southeast Division has been slipping steadily, a slide that could drag along the fan base, the advertising dollars for next year—Waddell’s job, possibly—as part and parcel of what would be a disaster should the Thrashers slip out of the top eight in the East over the next six weeks.
“We’re a non-traditional hockey market that relies heavily on the fans we have,” Waddell said. “We have to be in the playoffs. We need to get there. For our fans—our attendance has been up 2,000 per game this season—for everyone. We need to get there.”

continued

 

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Hockey Night In Bachelorhood

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

from the Edmonton Sun:

If you lived in England and were soon to be married, where would you go for your stag?
If you’re Charles (Chaz) Burgess, a diehard Oilers fan, you head for ... Toronto?
Burgess flew from the U.K. to Hogtown to watch his beloved Oilers fall 4-3 to the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday night.

“I’m a big Oilers fan. I come across (the Atlantic Ocean) as often as I can,” Burgess said.

Hey, he got half a dozen Hall-of-Famers to appear at his bachelor party…

continued

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It’s Not Street Hockey, But It’s Close

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

from the Chicago Daily Herald:

Defenseman Duncan Keith was unavailable for the final few minutes of Sunday’s loss when he damaged his skate blade on the concrete under the ice.
Madison Square Garden historically has had the worst ice in the NHL.
“I went to turn and I felt my skate go right down to the cement,” Keith said. “That’s never happened to me before.”

continued

 

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Hockey Tats

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun,

Once upon a time, saying a team was “tattooed last night” just meant it had suffered a lopsided loss.
Now it’s also in reference to boys going down to local parlour together to become men. Yes, getting tattoos is often very much a group effort — especially in junior hockey.
“For awhile there, everyone was getting them ... I don’t know too many guys who don’t have one,” says Senators centre Chris Kelly, who has had his back patted with the permanent drawing of a sun.
“It can be a team-building thing, something nice to look back on if you win a Memorial Cup or a Stanley Cup.”

continued

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The GM Meetings

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP via TSN,

“A lot of things get done when you get a bunch of managers together like that. More things seem to happen,” Holmgren said. “Things also happen at the draft when everybody is together in the same city. I would think it’ll be a little hectic (at the GMs meeting).”
The Anaheim Ducks, like the Red Wings, are Stanley Cup contenders who are looking to bolster their lineup. “I like our team. I believe in them,” Ducks GM Brian Burke said. “We’re looking to add some depth but we’re not looking to change much.”
Officially, trade talk isn’t why the GMs are here. That just happens to be what they’ll be doing before after their morning meetings with league commissioner Gary Bettman, deputy commissioner Bill Daly and director of hockey operations Colin Campbell.

more

added 6:17pm, from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

The National Hockey League’s general managers descended upon blustery Florida Sunday for three days of meetings, divided between the formal agenda - possible rule changes for next season - and the informal - golf games, deep-sea fishing and dinners out that will also feature oodles of trade talk.
With the NHL trade deadline moved up to Feb. 27 (it was Mar. 9 last season), the GMs will be down to just six shopping days once their meetings end Wednesday, suggesting the seeds for any moves will of necessity be planted in the next 72 hours - if not consummated on the spot.

continued

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Giving Up The Fight Gave Myhres Perspective

Blog: KK Hockey By George Malik

from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal:

Brantt Myhres never did keep a log of his many fights.
But going back to his wild junior days, the former NHLer figures he dropped his gloves about 300 times before former Edmonton Oilers enforcer Georges Laraque ended his career with a smashing left hand in a 2005 pre-season game at the Saddledome in Calgary.

Laraque sought out Myhres, who was trying to audition for the Calgary Flames’ enforcer job. But that TKO from big Georges came in a matter of seconds. Myhres needed surgery to repair the crushed bones around his left eye socket.
“They had to put in a mesh plate to hold the eye in place. They put in mesh rather than titanium, so I could fight again but I didn’t want to do it anymore,” he said.

much more in Matheson’s “Hockey World”...

 

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Update On Shanahan

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the AP via TSN,

Rangers coach Tom Renney said Sunday there didn’t appear to be any neurological damage. Shanahan left the hospital after a morning examination.
“He saw the neurologist and they are pleasantly surprised with where he is today,” Renney said before the Rangers faced the Chicago Blackhawks. “It’s not like he can play hockey in the next little while, but they’re optimistic with where it sits this morning.”

read on

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