Kukla's Korner

Hossa, Miller NHL POW

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Atlanta Thrashers forward Marian Hossa is the NHL's offensive player of the week after collecting six points in two games, while Buffalo goaltender Ryan Miller won the defensive award. Hossa had two goals and four assists while the Thrashers went 1-0-1 for the week, recording points on all six Thrashers goals. Vancouver centre Brendan Morrison (one goal, six assists) and Edmonton centre Shawn Horcoff (three goals, four assists) were also considered for the offensive award. Miller claimed the defensive honours after leading the Sabres to two wins with a .96 goals-against average and .969 save percentage. Goalies Manny Fernandez of the Minnesota Wild (2-0-0, 2.00 GAA) and Chris Osgood of the Detroit Red Wings (2-0-0, 2.33 GAA) were runners-up.

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WJC- USA On Center Ice

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I noticed Team USA will be on Center Ice this week: Tuesday December 27 NH02 1:00PM USA vs NORWAY Thursday December 29 NH02 1:00PM USA vs FINLAND Saturday December 31 NH02 7:00PM USA vs CANADA

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The Changing Hockey Stick

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Myrtle Beach Sun News,

In hockey, as in golf, technology is making the wooden stick obsolete. The new sticks - with hollow shafts made of composite materials (mostly graphite) that render them light as a feather - propel the puck faster than ever. One measure of how popular the composite sticks have become is the amount of money a team spends on them. A wooden stick, usually made of ash, costs about $20. The composites go for about $160 apiece. General manager Don Waddell said in the Thrashers' first season, 1999-2000, the team spent about $75,000 on sticks. By 2003-04, the popularity of "the one piece" - a composite shaft with a synthetic blade that has fluids injected inside - had increased that line item to $360,000.
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Fight Is Out Of The Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the St. Petersburg Times,

"The game is becoming more like European hockey," said former Buffalo great Danny Gare, who played during the brawling 1970s and was equally adept at scoring and fighting. "The game is more free-flowing. You don't have those one-on-one battles. You don't have those big scrums in front of the net because the referees are calling everything that looks like a penalty. "So guys are backing off one another, and as a result, there isn't the stuff that goes on that leads to fights."
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Chara A Force In Ottawa

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Ottawa Sun,

Anything that was under Zdeno Chara's Christmas tree would probably pale by comparison to what the Senators' single-most important skater could wind up with in the next sixth months. A medal from the Olympics. A Stanley Cup ring. A Norris Trophy. A multi-year contract from the Senators. All are within the grasp of the long-reaching Slovakian defenceman.
read on

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Savard Loyal to Wirtz

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Chicago Tribune,

"I have a really close relationship with Mr. Wirtz," Savard says. The Wirtzes "always took care of my family and myself. But I've earned what I'm doing. I sacrifice a lot." It's possible Savard will end up taking the route of former Detroit coach Dave Lewis, who spent many years as Scotty Bowman's assistant before finally getting the top job. But Savard's loyalty and relationship with the Wirtzes may hurt him in another way. It's possible he may never get the head-coaching job because the Wirtzes never would want to be in a position to fire him.
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The Art Of Skate Sharpening

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the LA Daily News,

Today, at 35, Rick Garcia is simply known as Rico, blade sharpener for the Los Angeles Kings. He's been with the team for nearly a decade, and his zeal for the job is even stronger this year after he took a deep pay cut during last season's labor dispute. Blade sharpening begins as a trade and transforms into an art form. With experience comes style, and then the players call you maestro. But these manipulators of steel have to win the respect of a team before their technique can be fully mastered.
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No Respect For Leetch

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

The folks at USA Hockey must believe in the Biblical teaching of it is better to give than receive, because boy oh boy, let me tell you, did they ever conspire to give it to Brian Leetch this week... ...Shame on the people running the show for not recognizing that while all Americans are equals, some American hockey players are more equal than others. Shame on those in the administration for not understanding that Leetch — like Granato — had earned respect reserved for the most elite in their society.
read on (reg. req.),

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Yogi Knows Hockey

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from NHL.com,

Yogi Berra is one of the most well-known athletes in American history. Berra is also a big fan of hockey, especially the National Hockey League. On any given night when the 80 year-old Berra is at home, he can be found in the family room watching NHL hockey on TV. It doesn't matter if it's the New York Rangers, New Jersey Devils or New York Islanders, Berra is tuned in.
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It Smells Bad

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the NY Times,

(Marvin) Miller pointed to the players union's eventual willingness to accept a salary cap and to Ted Saskin's controversial ascension to executive director of the union (he replaced Bob Goodenow). Saskin had been the union's senior director of business affairs and licensing. "The whole thing smells bad," Miller said. "It just has a very bad odor. You have a so-called senior adviser who takes the leading role in making one of the worst settlements imaginable and then becomes executive director of the union." Of the salary cap, Miller said: "I don't think it was necessary. All the signs were that the union, having come that far, they had more than a fighter's chance of prevailing. And when the tide turns like that, I get very suspicious of management's role in coercing the membership."
read on

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