Kukla's Korner

Drake Named Captain

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the St. Louis Blues, St. Louis Blues Head Coach Mike Kitchen announced today that forward Dallas Drake will serve as team captain for the 2005-06 season, while Doug Weight and Barret Jackman were named assistant captains. Somewhere, Scotty Bowman is laughing (Wings fans may know why).

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The Puck

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from The Hockey Report via Phillyburbs,

Now that the ink is dry on the new CBA and the puck will drop in the NHL once again, the brain trust behind the game will introduce rule changes designed to bring more flow and offence to the game. One thing they forgot to look at, however, is the puck. Just about every other facet of the NHL game has been put under the microscope over the last several years, from ice conditions to seamless glass to referees uniforms to goalie gear, all in an effort to improve the game on the ice and ultimately make it more marketable. This summer, during the NHL’s most ambitious installment of Extreme Makeover: Hockey Edition, it would have been to perfect opportunity to examine the simplest element in the game. Through all the league’s changes, most recently and in previous years, the one thing that has remained untouched is the puck itself, except for the brief and disastrous flirtation with the Fox puck.

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Hockey Links

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

I recently added some Hockey Links to the left sidebar in the Hockey Blog. Please take a few minutes and check them out. I am sure many of you are very familiar with those blogs and websites. I plan to add to the list as the days move forward and if you know of any sites that are of interest to hockey fans, let me know.

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One Year At A Time For Yzerman

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Traverse City Record-Eagle,

Yzerman is back at Centre ICE for training camp this week, anxious to play again after the NHL's one-year hiatus and excited about his 22nd season in the league. The 40-year-old center and longtime Wings captain said that despite some predictions that this could be his final season, he has no intention of retiring just yet. "We'll see how it goes. There's no reason to make a decision one way or the other," Yzerman said. "I've never said, 'This is my last season.' Let's get through camp. Let's get through the preseason and the regular season. We'll worry about next year next year."

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Leafs Organization Steps Up

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment announced Thursday that the organization will make a donation of $50,000 to Canadian Red Cross in support of relief efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The donation is among initiatives being carried out by the Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto Raptors, Toronto Marlies, and the Air Canada Centre. "We have all been moved by the human tragedies that have occurred to our neighbours in the southern United States," said Richard Peddie, president and chief executive officer of Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment. "Our board of directors is joining forces with our teams, our staff members, and our fans to offer support to the remarkable efforts of the Red Cross. Our action is supported also by our continued thoughts and prayers for the people devastated by Hurricane Katrina."

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Leafs Following All The Rules?

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Toronto Sun,

This is John Ferguson's first real training camp in charge of the Maple Leafs and we suggest a change in title is in order. Rather than refer to him as general manager he should be called micro-manager. There are, at camp, rules for this, rules for that and sign, sign, everywhere a sign: Do this, don't do that, can't you read the sign? Pat Quinn was and is a control freak when it comes to the environment of his hockey team. Ferguson is all that and a bucket of pucks. This is supposed to be the new user-friendly National Hockey League. That was the sell, remember. The great new partnership. And now, that we're all back in business together -- players, management, media (quick now, a group hug) -- the goal was to grow this great game of ours in the best interest of revenue, salaries, and circulation. Isn't that what Tie Domi told us? We're all in this together. Only some of us are more in there than others. And in this bold new world, there is never anything quite bold about how the Maple Leafs operate. Maybe they haven't read the league memos or typically, because they're the Maple Leafs, maybe they just choose to ignore them.

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Talking Officiating

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Stephen Walkom who was hired to run the NHL's officiating department in August, conducted a teleconference yesterday. Read the transcript in full in the comments section of this post. It may clear up many of the questions you have.

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Getting To Know Domi

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from the Toronto Sun,

"I don't give people too many opportunities. I'm a pretty honest, respectful guy. If you screw me, then usually I don't give you the chance to screw me again." -- Tie Domi He is beloved. He is loathed. He is the most visible athlete in Toronto and the most misunderstood. He has been called a cementhead and a punk; then he shows up with $100,000 in gifts for kids to whom Christmas only is a rumour. During the late lamented hockey lockout he was dubbed a traitor. Or would-be saviour. Take your pick.

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Theodore Salute

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via the CP,

The Canadiens' training camp had not even officially started when goaltender Jose Theodore was embroiled in his first mini-controversy. TV station TQS played and replayed tape of Theodore making a rude gesture, pointing the middle fingers of each hand, during a photo shoot at the Bell Centre on Tuesday. The picture also appeared in local newspapers yesterday. While it cast the Canadiens' highest-paid player in a negative light, Theodore said it was a playful gesture made after team photographer Bob Fisher asked him to do something with his two hands. He said he was only trying to make the photographer laugh. "It was a fun day for everybody and the media were following us around, which is good," said Theodore. "It was funny at the moment, but the way it came out in the media wasn't fair. "Bob Fisher is a guy I've done pictures with for 10 years." Le Journal de Montreal called it "a tempest in a teapot." But Theodore worried it would be viewed around the NHL as one more instance of the local media blowing incidents out of proportion and may put players off playing for Montreal. "I'm sure players around the league will see that," he said. "That's why we have some players who would rather sign somewhere else."

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Joseph Should Have Stayed In Toronto

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,

More than three years after the fact, Curtis Joseph wishes he had never made the decision to leave the Maple Leafs. "Absolutely, in hindsight, it would have been better for me if I had stayed in Toronto," he said this week as he began to rebuild his NHL career with the Phoenix Coyotes. "It's a very tricky question, and there's a lot of things that happened that nobody knows about. But as a friend of mine in business says, sometimes your worst decisions work out the best, and sometimes your best turn out to be your worst."

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