Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Southern Hockey Invades My Home

Anyone else get their catalog from the NHL today? I did. And I almost threw up in my mouth when I turned it over and saw this. image My god...my name on the back of a Hurricane jersey? Is this some sort of sick joke the Acid Queen is pulling on me? Speaking of the Canes, an A2Y reader from the Triangle wrote me today with this little tidbit of goodness.

Funny story. when Eric Cole scored a hat trick againts the Caps last week, John Forslund (the Canes excellent play-by-play guy) exclaimed on air, and I quote...."Hat trick for Eric Cole, and we FINALLY get to give away a TRACTOR!!" He was referencing the John Deere lawn tractor giveaway, given to a fan when any Cane scores a hat trick. Maybe ya had to be there, but it seemed the essence of "Southern Hockey".
You know, for some reason, I find that to be pretty cool. Like the reader said, that's "Southern Hockey."

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Detroit’s Dynamic Duo

Nice feature on Draper and Maltby via NHL.com,

"I've played with 'Malts' forever," Draper says. "It's scary, but we've played almost 800 games together with him being my left wing." The number of games might have been slightly exaggerated by Draper for emphasis’ sake, but the point was duly made. These guys have become extensions of each other on the ice, feeding off each other's strengths to form one of the best shut-down forward tandems in the game.
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You Just Can’t Please Everybody

Oh, here we go. It was bound to happen and it naturally has. The complaints are filtering in from the early-to-close precincts. And what are those complaints? That the Wings are winning, but winning ugly. I'm going to revise the lead. The "complaint" I'm referring to is not really a gripe, but a statement that the Wings are playing a slowed-down, tight checking game in a new NHL that was supposed to be rid of such tactics. I'm toning it down because I think I'm still a little irritated with Jamie Fitzpatrick of Pro Ice Hockey for his "it's just a game" statements regarding Oiler fans and the McGeough incident. In this case, Fitzpatrick is probably voicing a view we're bound to hear more and more. The Ghost of NHL Past

They aren't the second coming of the old New Jersey Devils. But many Detroit games are methodical, low-scoring affairs lacking in end-to-end action. The Wings allow fewer than two goals per game, and most of those come on the power play. When it’s five-on-five, the opponents are lucky to get a sniff of the net. Edmonton came to town last week and didn’t manage a shot on goal for the entire first period.

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Thursday AM Odds and Ends

I think I'm the only North American citizen over the age of 9 who doesn't own an iPod, or MP3 player or whatever current technology tells us we should listen to rather than our spouses, parents, teachers, etc. The reason I bring that up is because I like to jog, and when I jog the last song I heard is going through my head. Well, the last song I heard before I ran last night was being piped over the high-tech sound system at the Navy Exchange. It was "Love Machine". I don't know who recorded it, what year it came out, or much else. I just know "Love Machine" has to be the title because nothing else possibly could. It's disco, and it's horrific. And I couldn't get it out of my head as I ran and ran and ran. It was kind of a rhythm, a six step lyrical nightmare. Every stride was a different word of the only lyric that song seems to have "Oh-baby-I'm-a-love-machine", over and over. It was very possibly one of the three worst episodes of my life. And on that note, I guess there's a little Wing news to discuss.

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On The Prospects: Mursak Turning Heads in Saginaw

Jan Mursak is tearing up the OHL. A couple of pointers for you on him, and other Wing prospects. First, to Hockey's Future.

He has been a scoring machine for the Saginaw Spirit, scoring points in each of his first 21 games in the OHL and racking up a total of 38 points (13 goals and 25 assists). He’s getting a lot of ice time for a rookie and he has responded in a very good way to the coach’s trust. Mursak will have to try to continue his torrid scoring pace during the long OHL season. So far he has exceeded all expectation of a sixth round pick, and he looks like he could be a prospect to watch down the road as a legitimate NHL player.
And this from Red Wing Central.
The Red Wings are impressed with how fast the Slovenian has adjusted to North America, but his strength is a big concern. “He’s as weak as a noodle right now, but you wouldn’t know it watching him,” said McDonnell. “He’s real strong on his feet so when he comes out of the corner, he doesn’t get trapped too much. He’s very competitive.”
Another note on RWC you might find interesting...
Forward Darryl Bootland (Grand Rapids, American Hockey League) fought former Colorado Avalanche agitator Mike Keane early in the week, but was a surprise healthy scratch later in the week.
Oh...yes. I would have liked to have seen that. If anyone in the Grand Rapids area has any info on that scrap, let me know.

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Detroit Sports Radio On Williams, Grigorenko

Asst. GM Jim Nill told WXYT tonight that he feels Wing prospect Igor Grigorenko is getting stale in Russia. Nill stressed his belief that Grigorenko needs to be stateside next year and that his season in Russia thus far has been "solid, but not spectacular." Ken Kal, Wings play-by-play announcer, followed Nill and said he doesn't expect Jason Williams to return to the lineup until after Thanksgiving. Kal said he hasn't discussed it with the coaching staff, but gets the idea that the Wings depth is good enough now not to have to rush Williams back.

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Fan Post Of The Day: The Keys To Success

A nine-game winning streak will do some strange things to people. All the gnashing of teeth and wringing of hands has been set aside. The power play, operating at 9 percent efficiency, is a humorous side note. It's all about the positives these days in Hockeytown. LGW has a thread today titled "Why This Team Is Different." Our FPOD comes from within it. image BlueMonk/LGW: Why This Team Is Different

I feel this team has a little more balance and a little less talent. The style they're playing isn't as flashy but is the kind that I would expect to be more successful in a playoff series against a tough team. Hasek's health is a major concern for me. If he gets hurt, it will be a setback. If he can stay on the ice, he seems to be getting better and should be a major asset.
Read the entire post after the jump.

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Around The Blogosphere: Bubba, YouTube, Benjamin and Bobby

I don't like Bubba. I don't like his inferiority complex, the fans or The Gay. I definitely do NOT like Steve Sullivan, Paul Kariya or Tomas Vokoun. I don't like their announcers and I don't like their baby-turd colored uniforms. I don't like the way the The Gay crowd used to make those annoying sounds with their BBQ-sauce stained fingers pressed together, pointing in unison and sounding like a band of choking gypsies. And, I don't like Peter Forsberg. Wow...this could turn into an old fashioned hate-fest. Via Spector,

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Adam Proteau reports a player agent speculated on Peter Forsberg's future. The agent casts doubt on Forsberg re-signing with the Philadelphia Flyers and has heard a rumour that he might be dealt to the Nashville Predators. Proteau doubts this will happen. "More likely destinations include Calgary, Anaheim and, dare we say it, Toronto", he writes.

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Streaking: Make That 9

Just a heads-up, and you can do with this what you will. Store it away for future use if you'd like, like a cute, tiny little chipmunk stashing nuts filled with essential nutrients for the harsh winter months that lie ahead. Do chipmunks store stuff like squirrels do? I'm guessing yes. I was suggesting you store something away....oh, yes. It's this: I returned from my travels on October 24th. I hadn't seen a Wing game, listened to one or read about any of them. On October 25th they won, and they haven't lost since. So I, you know, got that going for me. And the Wings? What do they have going for them? Well, let's take a gander shall we? Let's get just a little crazy and start with last night's game then discuss some significance of this nine-game carousel of joy.

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Tuesday Evening Odds and Ends

I guess when your power play is ranked like 38th in the league, you take particular pride in a penalty kill ranked 23rd. Helene St. James/Free Press Wings Blog

The Wings have allowed only two power play goals total in their past six games, a performance they hope to build upon tonight when Detroit plays at Vancouver. “The penalty kill is a huge momentum builder,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said Tuesday after the morning skate at GM Place. “That’s what’s it’s been the last six games, because we’ve come out and gone hard at it and haven’t given up much.”
Ted Kulfan, former Deep Digger captain, reports on the Wing injury situation.
Coach Mike Babcock said Williams will fly into Calgary Wednesday and could play Friday against the Flames. The other three players are all listed day-to-day. Josh Langfeld and Tomas Kopecky replace Williams and Holmstrom up front. Andreas Lilja replaces Kronwall on defense, while Joey MacDonald will back up Dominik Hasek. Osgood said he should be ready for practice Thursday.
Don't forget. The Wings/Canucks game can be seen on Yahoo Streaming tonite. ----------- Wanna read something funny? Ok, here goes. "I apologize for the insider emails not going out. We are testing a new system again that will get delivered to all of you. Currently, many emails are getting snagged by ISPs that snag group emails as spam." And "insider" emails from Dwayne Klessel aren't the very definition of spam? Keep writing those checks suckers.

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About Abel to Yzerman

Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com

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