Kukla's Korner

Those Internet Guys

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Robert Tychkowski of the Edmonton Sun,

The Journal’s David Staples, who covers the Edmonton Oilers from home, wrote that Oilers defenceman Ladislav Smid has been “begging” to be traded out of Edmonton.

“Four times.”...

The Smid blog came complete with a character analysis explaining why Smid might want out—even though Smid says he’s never met the writer.

“On the Internet, some guy is writing some (crap) about me wanting to be traded,” he said.

“You know what Edmonton is like, lots of rumours. I don’t even pay attention.”

more & here is the blog by David Staples…

update 12:07pm, for some reason, the Edmonton Sun has either pulled the story or they are having an issue with the link.  It was working and now it is not.

added 3:46pm, Here is an alternate link to the Edmonton story via Slam.  Be aware, Slam links on occasion disappear too.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ladislav+smid

Vegas Talk

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

Well, this year something new will play out in the Nevada desert. The NHL’s annual awards ceremony is headed to Las Vegas, in its familiar time frame, between the awarding of the Stanley Cup (perhaps as late as June 16) and prior to the June 26-27 draft in Montreal. Messrs. Hart, Norris, Vezina, Richard et al are giving up the comfy confines of downtown Toronto, long the stodgy stage of the gala, and are headed with hardware in hand for the world’s gambling mecca. Union boss Paul Kelly, appearing last Saturday on the New England Hockey Journal radio show, confirmed the venue change and emphatically placed the NHLPA stamp of approval on it (this officially drops the “Just Say No Players Association” from the Sunday Hockey Notes lexicon). The shift to L.V., mused Kelly, will offer the event a greater and glitzier profile, possibly attracting more media coverage and high-profile entertainers from other sports and industries (see: Hollywood).

more plus other hockey topics, including the fighting talk at the GM meetings.

Also, it is my understanding the NHL Awards Show will take place at the Pearl Theater at Palms Place in Las Vegas.

image

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Cherry Takes A Shot At Caps Owner

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Eric McErlain of AOL Fanhouse,

Cherry had already warmed up the viewing audience earlier in the segment when he jokingly referred to Calgary Flames center Oli Jokinen, a Finn, as a Russian—because after all, it’s impossible to tell those European players apart these days!

Next, in a move that will only reinforce Cherry’s reputation as a xenophobe, he mangled the Caps owner’s last name (“Legonsis”), before questioning his hockey judgment in light of the team’s decision to sign Jaromir Jagr to a long-term contract…

read on...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: don+cherry, ted+leonsis

All Eyes On Crosby

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,

So far, Penguins captain Sidney Crosby’s season hasn’t gone as planned — verbal jabs from opponents, public denouncements from the media and criticism from fans.

Plus, his club, two victories shy of the Stanley Cup last year, is currently fighting for a playoff spot.

Perhaps those are the reasons Crosby, the player often called “the Face of the NHL,” has smiled a lot less this season.

“It’s probably always something you deal with when a team is not doing as well,” Crosby said of the vitriol aimed at him in recent months. “They look at leadership.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sidney+crosby

Trades That ‘Could’ Have Happened

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

• Ray Shero was busy around deadline time. Trying to make sure his club gets to the post-season, sources say the Penguins GM tried to re-acquire LW Ryan Malone from the Lightning before making the deal to get LW Chris Kunitz from Anaheim. The belief is the Penguins offered D Ryan Whitney in exchange for Malone, who signed as a UFA with Tampa Bay in the summer. When the Penguins were rebuffed, Shero, looking to add a winger to play alongside Sidney Crosby, went and got Kunitz.

• The Panthers came close to moving D Jay Bouwmeester at the deadline. Sources say the Flyers dropped out of the running at the 11th hour because they didn’t have the cash and left the Canucks as the only suitor.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Wings Humbled

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tom Reed of Puck-rakers at the Columbus Dispatch,

Captain Rick Nash scored three goals—all of them unassisted. The last time that happened? Try March 14, 1948 when legendary Maurice “Rocket” Richard pumped in four against the Rangers at Madison Square Garden. That’s according to Sal from the Elias Sports Bureau….

The Jackets had lost four of their six games and were coming to an arena where they have lost 19 times in 25 tries (6-17-2). They have only lost more games in one arena—the Sommet Center in Nashville. And yet they put together a stellar all-around effort.

Of course, there were two teams on the ice and the Red Wings, a proud franchise, were simply humbled. Do you recall a Detroit squad so loose with the puck? Brian Rafalski should argue he deserves an assist on Nash’s second goal. The Wings have allowed eight goals twice in eight days. The magnficent Henrik Zetterberg was a minus-4.

more

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

First Jagr In Edmonton, Now Renney

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

Jagr, who accurately had been linked to the Oilers in mid-February, is all but certain to attempt to gain clearance from Omsk and the KHL to return to the NHL next season even though he had told friends throughout the year he is locked into Russia for 2009-10. If Tom Renney had remained behind the Ranger bench, it’s likely he would have sought to come back to New York.

That scenario is now inoperative. Indeed, if the Oilers miss the playoffs for a third straight year, it’s just possible Renney could replace Craig MacTavish as head coach and reunite with Jagr in Edmonton.

read on plus a few more hockey topics…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jaromir+jagr, tom+renney

An Important Small Trade

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

One trade that was made on deadline day was the Tampa Bay Lightning trading Olaf Kolzig, Jamie Heward, Andy Rogers and a 2009 4th round draft pick to the Toronto Maple Leafs for Richard Petiot.  This is an interesting trade because it basically amounts to selling a fourth round draft pick to the Leafs.  Olaf Kolzig had surgery on his left bicep muscle and will miss the rest of the season.  His contract expires at the end of the season.  Jamie Heward suffered a concussion and should be out for the rest of the season.  His contract expires at the end of the season.  Neither of those two players will play a game for the Toronto Maple Leafs, but the Leafs will pay them the rest of the season.  For their part paying the Tampa Bay contracts, the Leafs obtain a fourth round pick and Andy Rogers from the Lightning in exchange for Richard Petiot.

Neither Rogers nor Petiot look like NHL prospects at this point.  They are AHL defenceman who don’t show much NHL upside right now.  Rogers is four years younger and a former first round draft pick, so one could argue he is the better prospect, but given the fact he hasn’t scored a goal yet in three years of AHL play, he isn’t close to the NHL and likely never will be.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink
 

Central Divison: From patsy to powerhouse?

Blog: KK Members Blog By BuzzFledderjohn

It’s been said for quite a while that the success of the Detroit Red Wings in the regular season is due to their beating-up of divisional opponents.  While it’s historically been a weaker division, it’s actually become quite a bit stronger in recent seasons.  As late as last year’s playoffs, we’d heard many broadcasters bring up the idea that the Wings pad their regular season points totals due to playing a weak division all season long, despite the fact that their record against their own division last season was far worse than their records against other divisions.

When the Wings won the Stanley Cup last year, it seemed to silence most about the subject.  Still, a lot of writers’ season previews still had most Central teams missing the playoffs and staying in the bottom of the conference standings.  However, what we’ve seen play out this year has been a drastic difference from years past: the Central division is arguably one of the, if not THE, strongest in the NHL.  Here’s some data to support my thesis (as of the standings the morning of Saturday, March 7, 2009).

The following is a summary of all games played against divisons, with points earned, points earned per game, and percentage of possible points earned against the divisions.  Note: all data includes only the records of OTHER divisions against the named division (e.g. the “Points Earned Against Central” are for the five other divisions, and do not include the Central division itself).  To read this chart in plain English, take the column heading, append the division name and total, and prepend “For all other divisions combined”, to get something like this: “For all other divisions combined, their points earned against the Central division is a total of 242”.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Members Blog | Permalink
 

Devils Should Be Embarrassed After Loss To Islanders

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tom Gulitti of Fire & Ice, T

he door to the visiting room remained closed for about 10 minutes following the Devils’ 7-3 loss to the Islanders this afternoon as head coach Brent Sutter ripped into his players for their lack of effort against the league’s last-place team.

“This team we played tonight worked hard again and we weren’t ready to match that work ethic,” a clearly upset Sutter said afterward. “Our compete level tonight, it’s hard to play this game when you’re not physically involved. Outside of maybe a couple of guys, we weren’t involved like we needed to be. When you get seven goals scored against you, it tells you something, especially with a team that takes pride in playing well without the puck. That’s tells you where your mindsets were and it’s disappointing. They should be embarrassed because they got embarrassed by a bunch of young players that play hard and compete.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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