Kukla's Korner

Clutch Perfomrers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Every month USA TODAY lists their clutch skaters and goaltenders.  The criteria used for the skaters include:

• First goal of the game: 75. Assist: 40. If first goal occurs after first period, then 100 and 60.

• Tying goal: 75: Assist: 40

• Two goals ahead (excluding empty netters): 50. Assist: 30

• Pull team within one: 25. Assist: 15

The top two players listed are Steve Sullivan and Sidney Crosby. 

read on for much more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The Greatest April 1st Prankster

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stu Hackel of Slap Shot at the NY Times,

When it comes to hockey’s greatest April Fool’s prankster, however, no one ever topped Paul Wieland, back when he was the director of communications for the Buffalo Sabres. “This was Paul’s favorite holiday,” says Gerry Helper, who is now the Predators’ senior vice president for communicaitons but who got into hockey when Weiland hired him as an assistant 30 years ago. “He told me I was going to write all the releases except one, and that was the April 1 release. He did that every year.

And they were great. The best might have been in the one he composed in the 1970s that was, as press releases were back in the olden days, mailed out in actual envelopes with stamps and delivered by the postal service. This one announced that the Sabres were exploring a new technology that would allow N.H.L. games to be played on plastic ice. This, Wieland wrote, was going to change the game. No more costly refrigeration operations, no more water usage, no more Zambonis.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Proving It In The Playoffs

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Craig Custance of the Sporting News,

Last year it was the Dallas Stars and Marty Turco who surprised fans with a run to the conference finals, perhaps motivated by those who questioned Turco’s ability to perform under pressure. The Red Wings won it all, proving they could still dominate during the salary cap era.

So which teams have the most to prove this spring? Here’s our top five:

1. San Jose Sharks: This is an easy one. San Jose has been an annual postseason underachiever, and—even considering the Sharks’ dominant regular season—there are people withholding judgment until they see real postseason success….

2.. Washington Capitals: Boston’s emergence made the Bruins the early favorite in the East. Before their recent losing streak, the Devils had been the bandwagon choice to win the conference, considering they’ll have a well-rested Martin Brodeur.

But the Capitals have spent most of the season at the top of the standings without taking a turn as the Eastern Conference team to beat. The lack of recognition—and lately the criticism—motivated Washington owner Ted Leonsis to get on his blog, TedsTake.com, and offer a defense. He points out that the Caps haven’t had a losing month this season for the first time in team history and that they have a chance to break franchise records for points and wins….

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Sakic Undecided On His Future

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,

We might not see Joe Sakic this year after all.

The Avalanche captain and franchise icon met with the media this morning, and while saying it remains his goal to play before the season is over April 12, he isn’t sure it will happen. Citing a loss of strength in his left leg – aftereffects of back surgery to repair a herniated disc and sciatic nerve damage to the leg – Sakic said it may not be possible to fulfill his goal.

“I lost a lot of strength in my leg,” Sakic said. “I’m not too sure where we stand yet. I’m just trying to work as hard as I can to make it back. Next week is obviously going to decide a lot.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: joe+sakic

Science of Hockey Exhibit

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Scott Burnside at ESPN:

Leave it to the Anaheim Ducks, seemingly always on the vanguard of thinking outside the hockey box, to bring science and hockey together in an unlikely yet wholly fascinating marriage.

Thanks to a $2 million endowment from the Ducks, the Science of Hockey, the first permanent science exhibit devoted to the game of hockey and how it works, will open its doors to the public Thursday in a 3,000-square-foot space at the Discovery Science Center in Santa Ana, Calif.

“It’s trying to teach kids science using hockey, and it’s trying to teach hockey using science. You can look at it from both perspectives,” Ducks CEO Michael Schulman told ESPN.com. “We’re always thinking of ways to get hockey in the minds of our youth. This is just another way to help it.”

More on the story here. Video on the exhibit below:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: discovery+science+center, science+of+hockey

Flyers Sign James van Riemsdyk

Blog: Hockey News Wire By Paul

The Philadelphia Flyers announced that they have signed 6’3”, 205-pound left wing James van Riemsdyk to a multiyear entry-level contract beginning with the 2009-10 season, according to club General Manager Paul Holmgren. Van Riemsdyk has also signed an amateur tryout for the remainder of the current season and has been assigned to the Flyers’ American Hockey League affiliate, the Philadelphia Phantoms. He will be available to play in tonight’s Phantoms-Albany River Rats game at the Wachovia Spectrum.

“We are pleased to have James in the fold and look forward to monitoring his development more closely,” said Holmgren in making the announcement. “It was a difficult decision for James to leave school, but we both believed that it was in his best interest to do so. We would like to take this opportunity to thank the University of New Hampshire, and in particular, Coach Dick Umile and his staff for not only their understanding but their dedicated work with James over the last two seasons.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | Hockey News Wire | Permalink

Adding Personality To A Broadcast

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NHL Network profiles one of the NHL’s signature voices, Montreal Canadiens play-by-play man Pierre Houde Thursday at 7:30pm ET.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pierre+houde

Reinventing the Pro Sports Business

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From the Canadian Press:

Lower player salaries, delayed construction of new arenas and “weeding out” of struggling companies may loom as the next phase of how the recession impacts the sports and entertainment world, a panel of industry executives and athletes cautioned Wednesday.

Speaking at the IMG World Congress of Sports, the group agreed that even in these times, well-managed companies should thrive. Still, they warned the impact of the global financial crunch may not be apparent in sports for some time - perhaps another year or more.

“We’re facing the greatest economic challenge of all of our lifetimes,” said Tim Leiweke, president and CEO of Anschutz Entertainment Group, which oversees arenas including the Staples Center in Los Angeles. “We have never seen anything like this and I pray that we never see anything like this again. And if you look at our industry, sports in particular ... we have to reinvent ourselves.”

continued… including comment by the NHL at the end of the article

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: economy, sports+business

Stars Of The Month

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NEW YORK—Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward, Vancouver Canucks center Henrik Sedin and Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Rick Nash have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the month of March.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Top Ten Active Russian Players

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from John Grigg of The Hockey News,

So without further ado, we give you THN.com’s Top 10 NHL Russians, right now.

10. Slava Kozlov, Left Winger, Atlanta
Kozlov played his first NHL game during the 1991-92 season as a Red Wing and has tallied 346 goals and 821 points in 1121 NHL games. The 36-year-old is currently enjoying one of his best campaigns with 24 goals – including 12 on the power play – and 70 points in 76 games.

9. Nikolai Khabibulin, Goaltender, Chicago
Khabibulin makes the grade, but barely. He had pretty much sewn-up the No. 1 job with the Blackhawks before an injury in mid-February….

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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