Kukla's Korner

Henrik Zetterberg Hangs Up His Skates

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

from Mitch Albom of the Detroit Free Press,

That was no accident Friday. Hank Zetterberg said goodbye to an amazing hockey career exactly where he wanted to do it:

Where it began.

“Having a little media scrum in the corner, in a practice rink, in Traverse City, during training camp,” he admitted Saturday via telephone, in typical understated humility, “that was a perfect ending for me.”

Off sails the captain, off sails the ship. Zetterberg’s retirement is more than just the end of a star career under a particular Red Wing banner. It’s the end of that banner. By the time the Wings hoist another Stanley Cup, they will look nothing like the team Zetterberg began on, and possibly nothing like the one he’s retiring from.

Think about this. The man they call “Z” birthed his Detroit legacy by skating beside the following players, who had all hoisted a Stanley Cup a few months earlier: Steve Yzerman, Sergei Fedorov, Brendan Shanahan, Brett Hull, Igor Larionov, Darren McCarty, even Luc Robitaille. Luc Robitaille? Does Zetterberg go back that far?


Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Handling All The Equipment In Traverse City

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

Paul Boyer explains how the equipment is stored while the Wings are in Traverse City.


Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Marc-Andre Fleury On The New Modified Equipment

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Jesse Granger of the Las Vegas Sun,

The NHL altered goaltenders’ chest-protectors this offseason, making them smaller in several areas to cover less of the net. With last year’s padding Fleury’s arms weren’t as mobile, and he never could have slicked his hair back while wearing it.

“I guess that’s one of the benefits,” Fleury joked.

But Fleury and many goalies around the NHL aren’t completely satisfied with the new equipment. They are still requesting small tweaks to provide them with the proper protection. Fleury is still awaiting replacement parts with preseason already started and the regular season quickly approaching.

“I think it just feels a little bit rushed,” Fleury said. “There are still come complaints about parts so we’re still waiting for pieces to be signed off on by the league. I’m hoping I get the pieces here in time.It would have been nice to get comfortable, make sure it’s safe and wait for parts before the season started.”

The changes include making the shoulder floaters (small pieces that hang on the shoulders) 1.5 inches narrower, and narrower arm pads around the elbow. They are designed to make the pads fit the shape of the goalie’s body and not protrude.

Fleury said there have been a small amount of shots in practice he thought were going to hit his shoulder, but sailed by and into the net.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: marc+andre+fleury, vegas+golden+knights

Who’s On The Right Side With Sidney Crosby?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mark Madden at the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,

Crosby’s style will likely keep him productive well into his 30s. He doesn’t have to temper his game much, or think of anything new. Foes obviously have a read on Crosby, but it doesn’t matter. He just needs to stay fit.

He will. Crosby is likely doing push-ups right now.

Crosby’s style makes selecting linemates more challenging than one might think. Here’s what Crosby expects (requires) from his wingers:

•Defensive acumen;

•Quick and accurate puck movement through the neutral zone;


•Support down low.

Be ready for plenty of in-game guidance, too. Personal coaching from hockey’s best.

Jake Guentzel is an easy choice at left wing. A great match stylistically. That’s no surprise. He’s a coach’s kid.

But who’s going to play right wing on Crosby’s line?

The accurate answer: Many will.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Saturday Night Hockey Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,

- I know there are only 31 general manager jobs in the NHL and it’s an impossible job to get. Plus, I like and respect Pierre Dorion but if I were him, there would be 30 teams with general managers and one messed up team in the market for one.

- In 2007, the Montreal Canadiens used their first three draft picks to select Ryan McDonagh, Max Pacioretty and P.K. Subban, all of them impressive enough to have letters on their jerseys, all now gone with the return for the three somewhat inconsequential.

- Statistics can’t measure what Henrik Zetterberg did for the Detroit Red Wings. They are only part of the package. A player like Zetterberg, getting 18 minutes a night, was 16 minutes of a clinic on how to play without the puck. There have been few players smarter than him in his time in the NHL. He’s in my Hall of Fame, every single day.

- Don’t understand the NHL, part 2789: It will be legal to smoke marijuana in Canada next month. The NHL will continue to test for what is about to be recreational substance.


Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Andreas Athanasiou Feels More Ice Time Means More Production

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

from Ted Kulfan of the Detroit News,

It appears Athanasiou will be playing more at center, probably playing with Thomas Vanek on one wing — for Sunday’s Red & White scrimmage rookie Filip Zadina will be on the other wing, an interesting line to be sure — and a likelihood of increased playing time.

If that’s the case, Athanasiou has the opportunity to more closer reach the potential he’s teased but has yet been unable to consistently exhibit.

“It’s just consistently playing,” Athanasiou said. “When I get those consistent minutes, I consistently produce. So as long as those minutes don’t fluctuate from a lot to a little, if it’s a comfortable amount of minutes, I can definitely produce with it.

“Anytime you can take another step and become a bigger role player in this league, it’s definitely a good feeling,” said Athanasiou Saturday after the Red Wings completed a training camp practice. “It’s going to be sad not being on the ice with Z, but everyone is going to have to step up and take over those minutes that he played.

“And everyone will do a good job stepping up and I’m happy to be part of that, too.”

read on

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

You Want Some Alumni Hockey Tonight?

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Videos- Filip Zadina Today Plus Mike Green And Anthony Mantha After Practice

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

Zadina has three goals in two scrimmages and will be tested again Sunday during the Red and White game, when he'll skate on a line with Andreas Athanasiou and Thomas Vanek.

"Excited about it," Zadina said. "They are pretty good players, so it's a pleasure for me to play with them. I will try my best to play with them the same level. It's going to be huge game for me."...

Zadina's Team Howe lost 5-1 to Team Lindsay in Friday's scrimmage, but coach Jeff Blashill didn't read much into it because Team Howe had a grueling practice before the game, while Team Lindsay practiced after. A fresh Team Howe whipped Team Delvecchio 7-3 Saturday.

"I think it's a good lesson," Blashill said of Friday's performance. "You got to keep grinding, I thought they ground it out, I thought they continued to try to do the right stuff, but it's hard to really stand out when you come off a 60-minute practice as hard as it was."


Below, watch  Mike Green and Anthony Mantha after today's practice in Traverse City.

added 6:15pm, A bit of Blashill video below too, with a link to the full video at YouTube which is showing an error when trying to play it at this point.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

Video- Andreas Athanasiou After Practice Today

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By Paul

5 1/2 minutes of Andreas Athanasiou with the media.



You can also watch David Pope and Evgeny Svechnikov at the Wings' YouTube page.

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink

What Would It Take For Artemi Panarin To Become A Member Of The Boston Bruins?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,

With the $2.75 million cap relief the Bruins picked up in the McQuaid swap, they are right on the cusp of being able to handle the $6 million owed Columbus superstar Artemi Panarin this year. They also have the young roster assets and prospects to woo Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen into making a deal. The question becomes: Would Panarin sign in Boston long term and would the Bruins pony up the $8 million a year to keep him happy? As for compensation, Columbus might want both Jake DeBrusk and Ryan Donato. Painful, but big deals most always include some hurt. Panarin, 26, has averaged nearly 80 points over his three NHL seasons, virtually in lockstep with fellow left winger Brad Marchand.

many more topics including the Ottawa Senators and Steve Yzerman...

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink

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