Kukla's Korner

You Read It Here First

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of he NY Post,

• Guaranteed to happen at the Entry Draft in Montreal, or the money back you spent to read this on the Internet: Vincent Lecavalier traded to the Canadiens.

There remains no more overrated coach in the NHL than Jacques Lemaire, whose teams have combined to win three playoff rounds (one with the Devils as a conference No. 1 seed in 1997, two with the Wild in 2003) since leading New Jersey to the Stanley Cup in 1995.

• But that’s what happens when a coach believes systems and not players win championships.

more from Brooks including ‘tanking’ & Tortorella…

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Heads Up To Our Denver Readers:  Don’t Read The Post Today

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Terri Frei’s got a good look (good…as in good for Wing fans) at the performance of six teams who could have been considered the league’s “elite” prior to the lockout, with a special emphasis on one team that has maintained that label.

Frei points out that the Wings notched a league-best 446 points the four seasons prior to Gary’s Legacy, and 455 in the four seasons since, also first in the NHL.

The Red Wings, as often has been noted, have been brilliant in making the transition, making tough decisions on buyouts or allowing proven players to leave while retaining a young and talented core and reaping the benefits of many years of astute scouting and drafting, especially of European talent.


Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

It Is Hard To Tank

Blog: The Puck Stops Here By PuckStopsHere

As the NHL regular season draws to a close, some teams find themselves outside the playoff picture.  There are a few malcontents around these teams who suggest that their team should now try to lose as much as possible to increase their chances at a top draft pick:  While it is true that a top draft pick might improve the team’s chances in the future - especially given the potential of John Tavares who should be the first pick in the draft - this is a stupid idea for the Colorado Avalanche.  The Avs are eight points up from last pace with ten games left in the season.  If they followed Dater’s advice and tanked, most likely they would wind up with a worse record and no first overall pick.  The most likely long-term result is a hit to the Avalanche public relations.

Tanking is not an easy thing to do.  If anyone is doing it this season, it would be the New York Islanders.  The Islanders do not have a very good team.  They knew that coming into the season.  They knew they didn’t have the veteran stars to compete and they didn’t have the deepest group of prospects either.  I picked them to finish last in the conference at the beginning of the season and wasn’t alone in that prediction.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | The Puck Stops Here | Permalink

Panthers Minutes Away From Two Points But Lose Game In Regulation

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Brian Biggane of the Palm Beach Post,

For the third time in six games, Florida carried a lead into the third period Saturday night and was unable to hold it, falling 3-1 to Columbus at the BankAtlantic Center.

What made this one even tougher is the Panthers still clung to their 1-0 lead with three minutes to play before the Blue Jackets’ Raffi Torres got the tying and winning goals 1:13 apart.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink

You Know You’re Having A Bad Night…

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

...when this happens.  Vancouver has the puck while a delayed penalty has been called against Phoenix…

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Evening Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

We didn’t play the way we wanted. This team wants to be in the playoffs, but it’s not going to come from anyone else. We have to work together and get some points. It doesn’t matter if we score ugly goals. It’s getting late and we have to find a way to win.”

-Maxim Lapierre of the Montreal Canadiens after their loss to the Leafs tonight.  More from Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: maxim+lapierre

Stats, Stats & More Stats

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Peter Adler at The Cult of Hockey,

Hockey, originally a Canadian national game, has become way too Americanized. And that’s what’s wrong with it. Many blame their local coaches for all kinds of unspeakable sins, crimes even. Most local fans, of course, don’t realize that the same things that they would have their own team’s coach drawn and quartered for happen all over the league.

Each and every team now boasts its own video coach. The idea is these people will dissect each and every opposing team their squad is about to play, figure out the foe’s strengths and weaknesses and adjust their own play accordingly. Their other role is to show their own players their own mistakes. Shockingly enough, most of the players, especially at NHL level, are perfectly aware of their mistakes. If they are not, they have no business being in the top league, anyway.


Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Blues Relying On Chris Mason

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

The Blues are an endearing team, fun to follow, and their intense work ethic and shared purpose have strengthened the ties that bind them. That spirit was a factor in Friday’s comeback. Getting those two points at Calgary — after being on the edge, and nearly slipping into the rapids — was a huge save.

And now only 10 games remain on the Blues’ regular-season schedule. Will the spirit sustain them? Can their belief system ride them into the playoffs?

It’s still a difficult assignment. Six of the 10 games will be on the road, and seven will be fought against teams with winning records. Among the traffic jam of teams squirming for the eighth playoff spot, only the Blues and Anaheim have more games on the road than at home.

Obviously, there’s hope. And Mason is the primary source. We’re not trying to diminish the importance of the other Blues; this task will require contributions from every player.

But Mason has made a profound difference in his team’s fortunes, starting 23 consecutive games and showing no sign of breaking.


Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Cherry On Malkin

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

As Tony pointed out, Malkin will not be suspended for his hit on Simmonds, but Don Cherry had some thoughts on the hit after the first game of the HNIIC doubleheader tonight.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: don+cherry, evgeni+malkin

“They’re Laughing At You Alex”

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

The words of Don Cherry on Coach’s Corner tonight.

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

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