Kukla's Korner

Gretzky Challenged By Coaching

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

The man who saw the game better than any other player views the coaching job as yet another challenge to be met, another problem to be solved. This isn't about trying to save his franchise and ergo his cash, a la Mario Lemieux in Pittsburgh. It's not about dabbling out of sheer boredom or having only Ford commercials and golf outings to look forward to. It's not about chumming with the boys and having a few cold ones in the training room. If that were the case, last season would have been more than enough and we would have seen Gretzky take a short bow at the end of the season and walk away quietly. And who could have blamed him?
read on

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Game 7 Performance

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Both Ruff and Laviolette are 0-1 in Game 7's. How about the players... image

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Talks With Russia Coming

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via RIA Novosti,

Vladislav Tretyak, Russia's top hockey official, will set off Sunday for talks with the National Hockey League in the United States, the Russian Hockey Federation said Wednesday. The three-time Olympic Champion, who was last month elected the head of the RHF, will also discuss the possibility of joining an IIHF (International Ice Hockey Federation)-NHL agreement that regulates transfers between European clubs and the American league. "Russia needs this agreement," Tretyak said at the World Championship in Latvia earlier this month.

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Is The Price Set For Ottawa Dmen

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

There's talk in NHL circles that Redden, who made $3.74 million (all terms US) last season and has played his entire career with the Senators, will be seeking $6.25 million per year. A source told the Sun the New York Rangers are prepared to offer Chara $8 million per season if he does decide to test the market.
more

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The Changing GM

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

James Mirtle writes about the changing breed of the NHL GM...

What it all means is that the days of the Bobby Clarke types running a team's hockey operations are going the way of the dodo. After all, the four most recently turfed GMs — Dave Taylor, Pierre Lacroix, Mike O'Connell and Craig Patrick — were all ex-NHLers who were replaced by guys without a lick of on-ice experience in the league. While this is a changeover that's far from complete, the four newest additions to the GM fraternity mean that for the first time in a long time, the Brian Burkes outnumber the Clarkes.
read on

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Easy Decision For Laviolette

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Brophy of the Hockey News,

Think Carolina coach Peter Laviolette has a monumental decision in terms of whom to start in goal for Game 7? Not a chance! It’s Cam Ward all the way. The rookie was sensational Tuesday night in a 2-1 overtime loss to the Sabres. Buffalo outshot Carolina 31-26 and Ward was exceptional in the opening period when the Sabres peppered 14 shots his way. Referees Bill McCreary and Dan O’Halloran came under heat for some missed calls and a first-period tripping minor to Buffalo’s Jay McKee, but isn’t that exactly what one expects when the season is on the line for one team?
continued

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Did Peca “Dog” Regular Season

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stan Fischler of MSG Network,

Michael Peca is the chameleon of the NHL. One wonders whether the $3.99 million-man was dogging it for six months in Edmonton before coming out of hibernation this spring. Somehow we have a feeling Sir Michael was not earning his keep, and the playoff awakening does not erase those sins of omission.

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Watching The Canes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Toronto Star,

Imagine this: The Maple Leafs are one win away from clinching a berth in the Stanley Cup final — hey, we never said this would be easy — but the game is being televised only on The Space Channel. That's the situation the good people of Raleigh faced last night as their Hurricanes battled the Buffalo Sabres in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference final, with the game being shown on the little-watched Outdoor Life Network. While Edmontonians have to worry about their downtown being burned down and looted during the playoffs, the biggest worry in Raleigh is whether or not one outdoor tent will be enough to accommodate the hundreds of "Caniacs" at the Carolina Ale House in suburban Raleigh.
continued

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Weight Out To Make Amends

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Al Strachan of the Toronto Sun,

"When guys used to do that 15 years ago," said Carolina Hurricanes forward Doug Weight, "the captain of the team would say, 'Wake up!' " All Buffalo Sabres captain Daniel Briere said was, "Thank you." Whatever view was taken of the controversial overtime penalty that led to Briere's goal last night, the fact remains the Sabres won 2-1, and now, the Eastern Conference final will be decided in a seventh game tomorrow night. "I take responsibility," he said, "but it was a bad penalty. It's crap. He has done it three or four times in the series. It has only been called a couple of times, but I guess he was successful at the right time. And then you see guys on the bench giving him pats on the back for that. I'll be out to make amends (tomorrow)."
read on

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Bowman Likes Sabres

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Go Erie,

"When you have a young team like they have, it's nice to have this kind of success," Bowman said. "But it works the other way, too. The more success you have, the less maneuverability you have to sign players. But I think (the Sabres) are in good shape right now. They've done a good job of figuring out how to make this work under the new rules."
more (reg. req.)

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