Kukla's Korner

Still In Hospital

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Jut a brief update on my health condition.  Will probably remain hospitalized today and tomorrow for more tests.

All I want to do is sleep, which is not normal for me.  Hopefully tests and medication will get me on the road to recovery soon.

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Osgood Is “MVP Of Cap Era”

Blog: KK Hockey By IwoCPO

The Detroit Free Press’ Drew Sharp,

And, yes, he’ll ultimately receive his pass to hockey’s Hall of Fame.

But he’ll be remembered most as the most valuable player—of the NHL salary-cap era. And that can be taken in its most literal sense.

Osgood becomes the face of future salary management. He’s the guy teams will search high and low to find—the reliable veteran goalie at the bargain price. He’s the steal of these playoffs, performing at a level that far exceeds his $1.42-million salary-cap number.

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Hawks Still Confident

Blog: KK Hockey By IwoCPO

Or so says Joel Quenneville, who is 0 for his last 4 in series’ against Detroit.

“Each and every guy still should feel pretty good about where we’re at,” Hawks coach Joel Quenneville said Wednesday. “We know we’re playing the best. We’ve got to be better, that’s all.

“We still should be excited about playing our next game, knowing that we’re close to getting where we want to go. If we get that result, we’ll feel good about where we’re at in the series.

More from Chris Kuc.

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Burnside: Playoff Scheduling Is An “Abomination”

Blog: KK Hockey By IwoCPO

Watch any hockey last night?  No?  Why not?  Nobody’s happy about this one. 

There is a strong possibility the Cup finals will start with back-to-back games June 5 and 6, a Friday and Saturday night.

Perfect.

Drag your conference finals on for more than two weeks, then make the teams play on successive nights.

Scott Burnside with more on the league’s ridiculous scheduling of the Conference Finals.

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Glenn Hall: No Longer A Fan

Blog: KK Hockey By IwoCPO

Via the Chicago Tribune,

The player who still owns an NHL record considered untouchable—502 consecutive games by a goalie, all without a mask—lamented, “I am not a big hockey fan.”

“It’s a goon game now,” said Hall, 77. “It used to be a skill game, but it’s not anymore. It’s changed. They don’t call penalties for charging, boarding or hitting from behind. You have to question who’s educating these officials. So I don’t bother to watch much.”

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No Doubt About Francis’ Loyalties

Blog: KK Hockey By IwoCPO

From USA Today,

“We had a lot of fun with those Cup teams in the early ‘90s,” says (Ron) Francis, who was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame two years ago. “Sometimes I’ve had to remind myself why I am here. I’m coaching the opposition, and I have a job to do. Your focus has to be there.”

Read on

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Science Tells Us The Wing PK Still Sucks

Blog: KK Hockey By IwoCPO

Via MLive,

Detroit Red Wings center Kris Draper took note of his team’s 71.7 percent success rate on the penalty kill in the playoffs and said it was not an illusion.

“It is that bad,” Draper said.

The Red Wings have allowed at least one power-play goal in 11 consecutive playoff games, the longest streak in franchise history. It has been 20 years since a team (Pittsburgh) had that long a streak in one postseason, according to STATS.

More...and a note.  As a Wing blogger, I’m not sure the last time I even brought up the PK.  It’s been so bad for so long that I think we’ve all just accepted it.  It’s almost like some sort of sick inside joke among Wing fans now.

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Pens Blue Line Chipping In

Blog: KK Hockey By IwoCPO

Via the Pittsburgh Post Gazette,

Orpik and Gill aren’t paid to score goals, on breakaways or any other way. Their job descriptions pretty much start—and finish—with playing physical, defensively sound hockey.

Neither, predictably, has a goal going into Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final against Carolina at 7:38 tonight at Mellon Arena, but their co-workers have made it easy to overlook that.

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The Mellon House Of Horrors

Blog: KK Hockey By IwoCPO

From Luke DeCock at the Raleigh News and Observer,

Really, should anyone be surprised the Hurricanes lost not one but two players in Game 1 of this series? It’s rare when they leave the ice at Mellon Arena with everyone intact.

At least three Hurricanes players have left the ice on a stretcher in Pittsburgh since the team moved to North Carolina in 1997, and that doesn’t include Erik Cole, who skated off the ice with a broken neck.

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To Hockeytown And Back In 40 Hours: A Recap’s Coming

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Morning bitches.  I’m back in DC and I’ll have a full recap of the last two days for you at some point today.  Briefly:

—Ty Conklin made himself a hero in the eyes of my 7 year old.  A simple gesture that won’t be forgotten by our family.
—An asswipe DJ in Pittsburgh says the Wings are “living on borrowed time.” Heard that yesterday driving through PA.
—Speaking of PA, every toll booth operator we encountered (about 19 of them) joked with me about wearing a Wing jersey.  They want a rematch.  Badly. 
—Almost ended up in Canada because of construction on 75N.  WTF? 
—Hawk fans in Hockeytown for Game 2…I thought you guys did pretty well. 
—Best sign I saw at the Joe?  “Welcome To A Nightmare On Helm Street”

More on all that later.  For now, you guys know Paul’s under the weather.  A2Y’s taking a backseat in favor of the main page this morning.  Regular juvenilicity will re-commence some time today.

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