Kukla's Korner

Just Like The Regular Season

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Globe and Mail,

Historically, there have been plenty of reasons to view skeptically the grand pronouncements from the NHL's head office in New York. They tended to blend fact and fiction to suit the game's greater propaganda needs, to patch over the ugly stuff while overstating all things bright and beautiful. But this time, they said they'd stay the course, and it appears commissioner Gary Bettman and company are as good as their word. Games will be decided late, leads will be blown, not every home crowd will leave as happy as the one here last night, and perhaps the Cup itself will be won or lost because some player grabbed or hooked or flipped the puck over the glass. Which is as it ought to be.
read on

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A Few Questions For OLN

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Granted, the Wings/Oilers game was blacked out in the Detroit and many other regions of Michigan, which we knew of in advance, but why not go to the Flames/Ducks game at 10:00pm as scheduled? Is there a technical issue that prevented you from doing this? The Flames game did show up on OLN after the Wings game finished, but an explanation would be helpful. Another question, there were many technical glitches with the Wings/Oilers game and the Flames/Ducks game. Lately, the OLN broadcasts were improving, but by the many emails and comments I received late last night and today, these problems were very noticeable last night. Also, we still have no idea where or if the HD OLN games will appear. It would be fan friendly if you put out a release, informing the fans where to find the games. Instead of searching channel guides and checking websites, it would be a great move on your part to inform the fans instead of leaving us in HD limbo. KK readers, feel free to add your own comments. Hopefully we can get an explanation from OLN.

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AO Predicts

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Ovechkin tries his hand at first round predictions. Thanks to James Mirtle for the pointer, again... Note to Doomy, make sure to read what Alex has to say about the Wings.

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Miller Ready For Flyers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Buffalo News,

Buffalo is young and inexperienced, much like its 25-year-old rookie goalie, but the Sabres are bold enough to believe they can go deep into the playoffs. The opening series against Philadelphia is an opportunity for them to legitimize themselves as Stanley Cup contenders, for Miller to prove himself as a big-time goaltender. This experience will only make him better, but let's not minimize Miller's maiden voyage into the NHL playoffs. The postseason is about winning. His performance in the first round will largely determine where this team is headed.
more

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Edmonton Ontarioians Invade The Joe

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Chronicle Herald,

Chris and Bill Gioskos are cheering on cousin Steve Staios and the Edmonton Oilers against the Detroit Red Wings. Staios, from Hamilton, is one of eight Oilers regulars from Ontario. No other NHL playoff entry has as many. Parents, siblings, relatives and friends from all over the province have converged on the Motor City to support their favourite team. Chris Gioskos twice won the Grey Cup as an offensive lineman with the Toronto Argonauts. "Now it’s my turn to bring a championship to the family," says Staios.
continued

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Jagr Knows “Shadowing”

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Asbury Park Press,

Devils general manager/head coach Lou Lamoriello would not say for certain whether he will use Pandolfo to shadow Rangers superstar Jaromir Jagr. Even if he doesn't, Pandolfo will be hitting the ice almost every time he spots Jagr hopping the boards, hoping to hold New York's Hart Trophy candidate off the scoreboard. "When he gets the puck on his stick," Pandolfo said, "it's not easy to get it off him." Jagr had a good chuckle over the way Pandolfo has shadowed him in New Jersey's past three meetings with the Rangers. "It's like when yourwife is chasing you every day, everywhere you go and you want to have freedom," Jagr said.
more

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Renney Deserves Credit

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Times Union,

According to Darius Kasparaitis, New York Rangers coach Tom Renney hasn't made many mistakes this season, but he did make one. "He's been consistent all year," Kasparaitis said. "Besides wearing a bad jacket one game, I think he's been good." Renney has changed the look, created a new culture, and put his fingerprints all over the team's shocking success -- and let's not get lost here, this year is an absolute rip-roaring success even if the Rangers are swept from the playoffs.
more

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Hurricanes Bonded

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Charlotte Observer,

The NHL has returned in full Hurricane force. For a hint as to why, you had to have been in a leafy park in the Raleigh suburb of Cary last summer. It was there the Carolina Hurricanes did some preseason team-building, corporate America's way of bringing employees together in an informal setting to help increase efficiency and productivity. Yes, even pro athletes go through it. "We were up in trees, up in canopies, doing stuff," said Hurricanes defenseman Aaron Ward, laughing. "I had a fear of heights before, but I don't think I do now."
continued

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Is It Income

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The Calgary Flames announced a few days ago they are opening up a bar, entertainment center in Calgary. Ron MacLean had Brian Burke on between the 2nd and 3rd period of the Ducks/Flames game last night and asked Burke if the income from this venture would be considered hockey income. Burke said he did not know and suggested the same question could be asked regarding the Red Wings, referring to the Hockeytown Cafe in Detroit.

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Which Philly Team Shows Up

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Philadelphia Inquirer, They are the yin and they are the yang. They possess both the known and the unknown. They excite and disappoint, usually within minutes of each other. They dominate play one night, then appear uninterested the next. They are Ken Hitchcock's Flyers, a team careening into the playoffs after a mystifying 5-5 stretch run. No one can explain why the Flyers went from an aggressive Stanley Cup favorite to a passive team that struggled to find energy in games before starting to resemble itself again. "I can definitely understand people's frustration," Mike Knuble said. "I know exactly why fans are not ready to get on the bandwagon. "In the room, we think we are capable of doing extremely well. Whether that's four rounds, we don't know..." more

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