Kukla's Korner

An “Edgy” Game

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Mike Ross at NHL Home Ice (XM Radio) blog:

Since we came back from the lockout, I’ve heard complaint after complaint from many hockey fans that the league is looking to soften-up the game. That the NHL is becoming a less edgy game.

But the actions of players like Tom Kostopolous, Rene Bourque and Alexandre Picard have me wondering if some players aren’t making the game a softer game all on their own.

All three of these players jumped an opposing player after a hard, clean and legitimate hit had been levelled against one of their teammates.

We’re told by George Laraque that such acts are justified whether the hit was clean or dirty. As Ken Campbell pointed out in a recent blog on thehockeynews.com, we’re told that opponents can not take liberties and get away with it.

But since when does a hard, clean body check get defined as a “liberty”.

continued…

Incidentally, Adam Proteau at The Hockey News wrote on something similar today, reflecting on Bob Clarke’s interview on TSN yesterday.

Filed in: NHL Talk, Cheap Hits, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Thrashers Meet Hossa

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Ben Wright of Blueland Blog,

So now we get to see how he reacts to playing the Thrashers. It would be tougher for him if he was playing in Atlanta, so maybe this won’t be a big deal given that the game is in Detroit. Maybe it will. And maybe it’ll be a big deal to some of his former teammates. Last year the Thrashers went into Detroit and won 5-1 on the strength of a Hossa hat trick. Wouldn’t you love to see Ilya Kovalchuk torch the defending Cup champions for a hat trick of his own?  And will former Red Wings Jason Williams, Mathieu Schneider and Slava Kozlov pull out the stops in a building where they all had so much success?

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Anaheim Signs Bret Hedican

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From Sportsnet.ca,

Sportsnet has learned Bret Hedican has signed a one-year, $870,000 deal with the Anaheim Ducks.

The veteran defenceman spent the last six seasons in Carolina and has also spent time in Vancouver, Florida and St. Louis during his 16-year career. Hedican has appeared in 988 career games recording 288 points.

continued…

added 4:52pm, More on the signing at Ducks Blog.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bret+hedican

Tkachuk Finding The Net

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pierre LeBrun’s blog at ESPN,

I’m scrolling through the NHL stats Thursday morning and do a double take. Keith Tkachuk is tied for the NHL goal-scoring lead with seven?!

What gives Mr. 36-year-old, I’m-supposed-to-be-in-the-twilight-of-my-career?

“I wish I could tell ya,” Tkachuk told ESPN.com Thursday. “I think it’s just being around the net and playing with players who are finding you. Just putting yourself in position and being in the right place at the right time is the reason why….”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: keith+tkachuk

Concerns About the Canadian Dollar

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

From CBC:

The unpredictable nature of the Canadian dollar means the NHL’s six Canadian teams are involved in a high-stakes contest of financial chicken, trying to stay one step ahead of the loonie at all times.

It’s a game they can ill afford to lose.

As recently as last November, the Canadian dollar briefly reached $1.10 US, and still hovered above par with its American counterpart in May. But on Wednesday the once-mighty loonie plunged below 80 cents U.S., and it could keep falling, according to market experts.

Continued here.  There’s also an excellent graphic accompanying that CBC article which shows how notably the fluctuating dollar affects Canadian teams, and I’ve taken the liberty of copying it below:

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: canadian+dollar

Now In Goal For The Canadiens

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the CP via Yahoo,

Kim St-Pierre has made another breakthrough - playing in goal at a Montreal Canadiens practice.

The 29-year-old goaltender for Canada’s national women’s team was called in when goalie Carey Price missed practice for a second straight day with a flu.

She was on the ice for the full 90 minutes and did not look out of place as the NHL players fired pucks at both her and back-up goalie Jaroslav Halak through a succession of drills.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: kim+st-pierre

The Non-Hockey Entertainment

Blog: KK Hockey By Alanah McGinley

John Loomis is the manager of game presentation for the Minnesota Wild at the Xcel Energy Center, and it’s his job to “entertain the fans between the whistles.”  From Travis Brillowski of the Minnesota Wild (via NHL.com):

From pregame videos to between-periods entertainment, to anything that happens outside of the action on the ice, it falls on Loomis and his staff to keep things coordinated and organized, and most importantly, keep the building loud. Considering the Wild have sold out every game during their first seven seasons—and season No. 8 is tracking to be another full-season sell-out—he and his crew must be doing something right.

Here is what an average game day is like for Loomis, leading up to the drop of the puck at 7 p.m.

read on for ‘a day in the life’ of entertaining a hockey crowd

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, NHL Talk, NHL Business of Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: arenas, hockey+fans

Hockey Talk Via The Maven

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Stan Fischler at the Hockey Journal,

• It’s still very much hush-hush but one of the hockey world’s foremost agents is locked in a very nasty dispute with a prominent former client. If the story – no names at the Café Discreet – headlines will be big! …

• How much pressure is being imposed on Dale Tallon? Every aspect of Blackhawks development – TV, marketing, ticket sales, etc. – has grown under the Rocky Wirtz-John McDonough leadership, except on the ice….

many more NHL bits…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A Day With Draper

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Find out what it is like to be a professional hockey player in this new series Day In The Life, premiering tonight on the NHL Network at 10:00 pm.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: kris+draper

Early Impact

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

Rarely in the history of the NHL have 18-year-old players made the kind of impact they are right now.

“First of all, I think it’s due to the draft class this year. As early as three years ago our guys were targeting that draft, that if you were picking in the top 10, you were going to get a guy that could probably step in and play in the NHL,” Phoenix Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky told ESPN.com on Wednesday.

“They’ve proven beyond a doubt … they’re all fitting in nicely and they’re all playing a part on their teams.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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