Kukla's Korner

Hatcher To Wear The ‘C’

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the AP,

Derian Hatcher is the new acting captain for the struggling Philadelphia Flyers. He replaces captain Keith Primeau, who is out indefinitely with a concussion. Hatcher and Primeau met with Clarke and coach Ken Hitchcock on Sunday. "I think it's something that (Hitchcock) and some of the players felt that, with some of what's been going on, that there needed to be a captain, a voice in the room that represents the team," Hatcher said.

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Girls Hockey Now Considered Normal

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Naperville Sun,

Cammi Granato remembers standing out. It wasn't because of her talent, which would later nab her an Olympic gold medal. She stood out because she was different. She was a girl playing hockey. "I'd walk into a rink and there would be people staring at me and whispering," said Granato, a two-time Olympic captain. "I just didn't like that feeling. I just wanted to be a part of the team and blend in." That wasn't always possible for Granato, who graduated from Downers Grove North in 1989. In the late 1970s and early '80s when Granato started, girls just didn't play hockey.
read on

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The Future Leader Of The Avs

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Longmont Daily Times,

Joe Sakic is the face of the Colorado Avalanche. Every game he plays, he has chances to move up the all-time scoring list. He’s a sure bet for the Hockey Hall of Fame, and his performance in the playoffs is legendary. But he’s 36. He still is an elite player, but the special moments he produces don’t happen quite so often. He’s the captain, but the future of the Avs lies elsewhere. Right now, that future looks more and more like Alex Tanguay.
continued

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Hockey In Mexico

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Arizona Republic,

Ice hockey is not very popular in Mexico's largest city. There are only three full-size rinks there. That's one ice sheet for every 3 million - give or take - citizens. Nevertheless, there are hockey programs for kids who live there and want to learn the game and play it regularly.
more

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Francis Honored

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Rocky Mount Telegram,

Ron Francis saved hockey in Raleigh. If he doesn't sign that free agent deal back in 1998, I don't know if the Carolina Hurricanes aren't still waiting for that first sellout, standing-room-only crowd. If he doesn't walk in the door and put that captain's 'C' on his sweater, I'm not sure the franchise isn't known as the Kansas City Tornados right now.
continued from the News & Observer,
"I had heard it was a beautiful place to live and a great place to raise a family," Francis said. "I'm glad to say I found both statements to be true. What I didn't know was the passion fans in this area bring to their sports. ... To see people waiting at the airport when we arrived home from the games in the wee hours of the morning. To live among the people of Raleigh as they showed their passion for the team with flags and banners and signs of encouragement. To see Duke, Carolina and State fans actually rooting for the same team!"
read on image

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A Salute To Bill

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Too good to pass this one up. From RWBill, a Red Wing fan posted at MLive,

The streaking Detroit Red Wings are establishing themselves as the odds-on favorite for early dismissal from the 2006 Stanley Cup playoffs by closing out a remarkable week with a polished 2-1 shootout loss to the Dallas Stars. The Stars, another former champion noted for playoff underachievement, had nothing but praise for the Wings. “They’re the favorite to be ousted early, no doubt about it. With 7 power plays and 28 shots they still lit the lamp just one time,” voiced an admiring Stars Captain Mike Modano. “The Wings set the standard. We can take away a lot from a game like this.”
read on...great tongue-in-cheek write-up...

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Just Say No

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Courier Post,

Peter Forsberg has torn his groin three times in the past two months. Robert Esche has torn his groin twice in the past two months. Joni Pitkanen needed surgery to repair a sports hernia in early December and when he came back after seven weeks of therapy, he tore his groin. All three are planning to represent their countries in the Winter Olympics that begins 18 days from now in Turin, Italy. Here are three words of advice to Forsberg, Esche and Pitkanen, and for that matter, the rest of the NHL: Just Say No.
continued

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They Said It

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

-Flyers general manager Bob Clarke understands Forsberg's Olympic desires. ''That's his decision,'' Clarke said. ''We wouldn't try to influence him either way. You would hope that the Swedes would not want him if he's not healthy. Why would you put a player who's hurt into a situation where he might play five or six days in a row? But, again, that's really up to them.''-via the Morning Call -"Instead of spending the last five minutes yelling at the referees about little slashing penalties -- the game's over, fellas -- get mad in the beginning," Wilson said. "Get mad at your teammates when they make a soft play or bail on a situation when they're trying to get the puck out. That's what they should be angry about, not the officiating."- San Jose coach Ron Wilson after losing to Phoenix 6-2, via the Contra Costa Times -"When I start thinking, I get in trouble." "I wasn't very good in the shoot-out," Legace said. "I like it (the shoot-out), but I watch too much video and I psyched myself out again, like I did the other night. "I'm a reaction goalie. I can't be thinking."- Wing goalie Manny Legace after losing to Dallas in a shootout, via the Detroit News

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Conspiracy Theory

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

Perhaps its only a manifestation of this conspiracy-theorist mind, but forgive me for wondering whether the Islanders are being steered away from Dean Lombardi — only the best candidate for the GM post extant — by Gary Bettman because of a nasty feud between the former San Jose boss and the commissioner that began when Lombardi signed Owen Nolan to a free-agent contract in 2000 that included a lockout-protection clause the NHL grieved (and lost).
more (reg. req.)...don't miss the latest on the NHLPA...

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Teams Want Mogilny- Lou Says No

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

It's believed Lamoriello has gotten calls from teams that are willing to pick up Mogilny if he's called up -- but has said no. The Devils have a chance to rid themselves of some problems, but appear to be ready to swallow the money. Not only does that not make any business sense, it makes you wonder who or what's making Lamoriello do this.
more

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