Kukla's Korner

Thank You Ted

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Mike Hume of the Falls Church News-Press,

Since the rebuild began, Leonsis tried to sell fans on his team. But for all of silver-lining citations and what, at times, seemed like overly-optimistic opinions, he never once presented a false front. He never lied about his commitment to the team and to the fans — even the ones that had temporarily forsaken him.

In a perfect world, such behavior would be common place, but struggling sports teams seldom receive the commitment the Capitals have from Leonsis. Fans of the Baltimore Orioles, Kansas City Royals, Florida Marlins and Pittsburgh Pirates, feel free to send in your testimonials.

So as the euphoria of the Stanley Cup Playoffs washes over Washington this weekend, praise the players that willed this team into the postseason. But save something for the man in the owners’ box that made this playoff push possible.

more

added 10:16am, The Wall Street Journal published a Q & A with Ted Leonsis today,

The Wall Street Journal: Like most other NHL teams, the Capitals get little exposure. What can the NHL do to get a better TV deal than the arrangements with Versus and NBC—and, of course, more fans?

Mr. Leonsis: My belief, and what I’ve been advocating, is we’ve lost the TV war. That’s where the puck is. We want to go to where the puck’s going to be. We want to fight the big battle, and there we’re advantaged. The NHL has the most wired, the most affluent fans. They’re living their life on the Net. We wanna be, and we’re becoming, the leader in growing digital media.

more (not sure if it is for paid subscribers only)

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ted+leonsis

Sharks Outworked

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Drew Remenda at Seagate Broadcaster Blog,

Tim Hunter said it best before the start of the 3rd period. ‘We’ve been outworked.” I thought I entered a time warp and was watching the early season version of the team. Some guys were working, some weren’t. The defense made poor choices and moved the puck slow. The forwards were too far up ice and in poor postion to support the D. Too many long pass attempts, too many turnovers, too many mistakes.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, San Jose Sharks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comment of the Day

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Screw it. I’m fine.  I’ll be just fine.  Starting something new and we’ll continue it throughout the playoffs.  Each day I’m going to determine which A2Y reader (of the 19) was the most brilliant, most juvenile, most something. 

Today’s is short, simple, to the point and yet slightly confusing.  How appropriate that it should come from AndrewfromAnnArbor.

From “Just Another Day”

God bless my mother-in-law because it’s 14:30 and I’m already drunk.

 

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

The Heart & Soul Is Back In Pittsburgh

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,

“Last year, I think we were in shock after Game 1 in Ottawa. They came out and battled us so hard,” said Roberts, who tried to aw-shucks his way around his role in last night’s win. He said luck was the big factor since he is still not in prime shape because of the injury layoff.

“Hopefully, I’ll feel as good tomorrow as I do right now,” he said. “I didn’t have a lot of jump in my legs out there. I was just fortunate to be in the right place at the right time.”

Perhaps. But Roberts had enough left in the tank to score his second goal with 1:35 left and swat around a couple of Senators who tried to rough up the Penguins at the end of the game.

Watching Roberts show the way for his youthful teammates must have gone down especially bitterly with Senators owner Eugene Melnyk. He has long believed, as have the team’s fans, that Roberts is just the kind of heart-and-soul player the team lacked.

more

Update 2:02pm ET: From the Stats Wizards at Elias Sports Bureau, more on Roberts—

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: gary+roberts

Bad Night

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from The Good, The Bad And The Duthie,

For all of you who believed there was some magic playoff pixie dust Bryan Murray could sprinkle on his team and wipe away the mess of the last five months, sorry. 

It is what it is. Or, the Senators are what they are:  a wounded, shattered, lost, hockey team.  The 4-0 score was kind.

I know.  You should never judge a series by the first game.  Things can happen.  Momentum can change.  But there is a sense of inevitability creeping in here.

more and a quick look at the other games from last night…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Play The Games First

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Red Fisher of the Montreal Gazette,

If I’m reading and hearing it correctly, the Canadiens tonight embark on their journey to a 25th Stanley Cup.

A slam dunk.

A walk in the park.

Men vs. boys.

Check your box, G. Carbonneau: the Boston Bruins already have mailed in their games.

Whoa! Have I missed something in the translation?

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Team Matters To Tippett

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tracey Myers of the Star-Telegram,

It’s really no surprise that Tippett’s last concern is himself. In his coaching career, it’s never been about the individual. He’s adamant about the team concept, and is reluctant to call out particular players unless the moment calls for it.

“He’s not the [Calgary Flames coach] Mike Keenan who likes to bury anybody or crush you or tear you down,” center Steve Ott said. “He’s always come up to me or other players to find out what’s wrong or [ask] ‘how you doing?’”

The regular season has been a boon for Tippett, whose 235-127-48 record is a plus. So are the two Pacific Division titles. The playoffs have been tougher, and the Stars have fallen for various reasons.

The picture was looking different more than a month ago. A very successful February, coupled with the trade for Brad Richards, had some people picking the Stars to win the Stanley Cup.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dave+tippett

Devils Need More Goals

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Tom Gulitti at Fire & Ice,

“We’ve got to find ways to score,” Devils coach Brent Sutter said. “We had opportunites and didn’t capitalize. I’m not making excuses whatsoever. We hit some posts. We hit the crossbar. We had two quality scoring chances I can think of where we just flat out missed the net. At that point, you give yourself zero percent chance of scoring when you don’t hit the net.

“Through the year we’ve always found ways to get through. Yet, again it’s a 1-1 game. That’s more concerning than the fact that we didn’t score more goals than that. It’s 1-1 with (12 1/2) minutes left and we can’t make the mistakes that we made down the stretch. That to me is more of a concern than the fact that we never got that second goal because we still have a chance to win the game when it’s 1-1. You’ve got to find a way to prevail not to break.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Just Another Day

Blog: Abel to Yzerman By IwoCPO

Has every year been like this?  Every postseason I ask myself that.  Was I this pathetically nervous last year? I must have been.  Playing Calgary in the first round?  All we must have been reading was how the big bad Flames were going to grind the Wings into the ice. Pound them into submission.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | Abel to Yzerman | Permalink
 

Morning Line

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

via Eric Francis at Best of Seven,

“We read the papers like everybody else and know that nobody thinks we can win this series,” said Jarome Iginla following the win - the Flames sixth playoff win at the Shark Tank in seven playoff games dating back to 1995.
“But we believe we can and that’s all that matters. We match up well.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jarome+iginla

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