Kukla's Korner

Good Losers

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Edmonton Sun,

The Edmonton Oilers, Boston Bruins and Anaheim Mighty Ducks are in line for a prize. They're the the National Hockey League's most efficient losers. All are tied for first place in one of the sport's saddest categories: points gained for being beaten in shootouts or overtime sessions. Without the slightest doubt, the artificial points have helped Edmonton's murky playoff picture.
more

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Leafs Are Big, Slow & Lost

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Montreal Gazette,

The Maple Leafs slunk back to Hogtown last night after another lopsided loss to the Canadiens, this one by a 6-2 score. Toronto was not even above one final embarrassment when Darcy Tucker (who else?) attempted to take out Alex Kovalev's knee with an ugly submarine move in the dying minutes. Here's a news flash: Hockey Night in Canada's prime property is a stinker. The Toronto Maple Leafs are a franchise in full flounder, a team without a clue. The defence is big and slow, the forwards are big and slow and old and fragile, Ed Belfour is done and Mikael Tellqvist is good but not good enough.
more

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Rangers Caught A Break

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

The pertinent point is that Jagr's cap charge gives the Rangers the freedom and flexibility to build around him, and the more pertinent point is that it could not have simply happened by accident. This was no favor bestowed upon Broadway's team by the NHL Sixth Avenue Headquarters. This was, we infer and submit, a result of power politics practiced by Gary Bettman and by Jim Dolan. Dolan on Friday praised the commissioner for his ability to hold the owners together throughout the lockout that canceled 2004-05. Only the most naive would believe that Bettman was not playing pork-barrel politics in order to maintain unity the financial haves and have-nots. His promises to the small markets were made publicly. We're submitting that promises to big markets were issued in a far more subtle manner, or did that OLN deal with the Comcast Flyers materialize out of cheese cloth?
read on (reg. req.)

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Rucinsky Out With Broken Finger

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the AP,

New York Rangers left wing Martin Rucinsky will have surgery on his broken finger within the next week and is expected to be out for a month. Rucinsky sustained a multiple fracture of the finger on his right hand when he was slashed by Florida's Jay Bouwmeester in the third period of New York 3-2 shootout loss to the Panthers. Bouwmeester was not penalized.

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MOC Fired

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via TSN,

Mike O'Connell has been fired as general manager of the Boston Bruins. A formal announcement is coming at 6pm et/3pm pt. Assistant GM Jeff Gorton has been named interim GM.
update 6:27pm, Jaci at Wicked Bruins Fan has an update on the press conference.

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Is Kansas City An Option For The NHL

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Kansas City Star,

Is Kansas City in danger of losing the Chiefs and Royals? That seems to be the subtle but clear threat the two teams are giving the region. As voters in Jackson County, Mo., consider a proposal on sales and business taxes that would raise about half a billion dollars for extensive renovations to Kauffman and Arrowhead stadiums, radio and TV ads are saying, "Keep the teams ... "
continued...not really hockey related, but there has been talk K.C. would be a viable option for a NHL franchise...

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Samuelsson Signs Extension

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Mikael Samulsson signs a three year extension with the Wings. No details yet. update 12:25pm, from the CP via TSN,

The Detroit Red Wings have signed Swedish forward Mikael Samuelsson to a three-year contract extension.
update (with a pointer from A2Y) 3:35pm, via the Detroit Free Press,
“I wanted to stay, I wanted to stay for sure,” Samuelsson said after the morning skate at Joe Louis Arena. “I think I played pretty good on this team. ...Was a no-brainer for me.” “Now I’m stuck with him for three more years,” Zetterberg said with a laugh. “He’s been in and out from the power play and I think he’s scored a lot of goals five-on-five, big goals for us, too. He deserves three years for sure.”

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Hasek Getting Rest

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the Buffalo News,

Hasek has a history of groin problems and has not skated in equipment since suffering the injury in Italy. Muckler expected The Dominator to be back for the playoffs and said the injury might have been a blessing. "We're not rushing him back," Muckler said. "It's kind of a good thing in a way that he's not playing. He's getting rested. He's going to have all kinds of strength when he does come back. I think it's going to help him to get through the playoffs. We're probably in a better position now than if he played."

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Lowe Wants More From Veterans

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Edomonton Sun,

"Now's the time for our leadership group, and that includes a lot of guys, to come up now and respond and have a big game," Lowe said. "What concerns me about our team is there's two mindsets. You can have a mindset of wanting to win. There's a mindset of being afraid to lose. You can never win if you have that mindset of being afraid to lose. You've got to play to win." There's plenty of evidence to support Lowe's contention his team isn't getting enough gamesmanship and leadership from its veterans.
more

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Weight & Recchi Sacrifice For A Cup Run

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the News & Observer,

The children around his ankles, the rides to and from school, the voices at the kitchen table all blended into Doug Weight's routine right up until he left his wife and three young kids in St. Louis at the end of January. Only a run at the Stanley Cup could tear him away, which is why he finds himself living in a hotel thousands of miles away and playing for the Carolina Hurricanes. Weight comes "home" now, and there is no one waiting. Just the TV, the newspaper and hours of free time he hasn't had in so long he can't even remember.
continued

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