Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Ivar Ekman at the New York Times,
But with little to offer except a faint smell of rotten fish when the wind blows from the direction of the pulp mill a few miles away, Ornskoldsvik continues to churn out great hockey players like a factory.
Perhaps there is something in the water here. Or the pizza. Apart from skates, sticks and pucks, the one thing that all of Ornskoldsvik’s great hockey sons have in common is that they have fueled their growth with food from the town’s unofficial hockey pizzeria, Mammamia. The hockey-loving pizza maker, Giordano Sternad, denies adding a secret ingredient to his pies. But he admits to being an important part of a close-knit hockey community that comprises most of the town.
from Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News,
“I’d like to hear your opinion, not what the Stars are telling you, regarding the personnel provided by Armstrong and the lack of playoff success under Tippett,” wrote one reader.
While another was less tactful by saying, “So wait by your mailbox for Armstrong’s Christmas party invite, since you have not been critical of him, and I’m sure it will be there soon. Armstrong needs to go!”
For the record, I have not been invited to the Christmas party, and it is somewhat disturbing, but that’s not the reason I have not fried the GM or the coaches.
Honestly, my paper would prefer I not make declarations about firing GMs and coaches. While columnists like Tim Cowlishaw and Jean-Jacques Taylor have the ability to profess their opinions – and have done so – my job is reporting and analysis. The line between analysis and opinion is a fine one – and the more newspapers rely on things such as blogs and newsletters to deliver our product, it gets even more blurred.
read on for news on the Dallas Stars…
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
The Detroit-born, Boston-raised son of Bobby Grier - a former New England Patriots’ player personnel director who now works for the Houston Texans as their associate director of scouting — Grier was raised in a sports family, so he understood, from an early age, the demands of the profession, and the need to carry himself in a professional manner.
“All the little detail things are huge to Mike,” said Wilson. “He comes from a coaching family. If you talk to him about what his dad said to him along the way, it was all about being a professional and paying attention to detail. You don’t have to do much coaching with Mike.”
from the San Jose Sharks,
Holmstrom is notorious for sitting directly in front of the netminder, and while it may ultimately be the goaltender’s problem, Nabokov is simply the last line of defense and the blueliners and forwards can help deter any potential problems as well.
“He gets there as early as possible,” said Hannan of Holmstrom’s offensive position. “You can get in front of him or lift his stick.”
Being in front of Holmstrom to stop a shot, prevents the goalie from being screened. Working his stick keeps the Red Wings forward from grabbing any rebounds or tipping for a redirect.
“You can’t allow any second chances,” said Hannan. “He’s good at tipping the puck. He knows where to screen and how to tip.”
from Damien Cox at ESPN,
You may say, goals become dearer in the Stanley Cup playoffs. Correct.
But what’s interesting is that while last season’s difference between scoring in the regular season and the playoffs was a half-goal (6.2 in the regular season to 5.7 in the playoffs), it’s down a full goal (5.9 to 4.9) in this campaign. We’re basically back to where we started, statistically, before the lockout.
Now, don’t expect the NHL to acknowledge this. After all, it didn’t acknowledge there was a problem with scoring after it started fixing it. Instead, the league tried to discredit the messengers. Don’t hold that against the NHL, it’s just its style.
While the sailor is busy covering ground in record time, I thought I would do a little Wings update.
Red Wings Corner reports Lang needs more ice time and has the possible line combos for tonight’s game. Looks like Hudler is out.
from Scotty Bowman at NBC Sports,
To keep out of danger in your own end, what you’ve got to do is get to loose pucks quick, and make quicker decisions. You have to have your mind made up before you do it. I know a lot of coaches nowadays don’t want their defensemen to clear the puck around the boards, but on the glass—just make sure you hit the glass! That’s why that automatic penalty for shooting it over the glass is so effective in causing scoring chances. The most-skilled guys will be able to put it in the right place, and it will be tougher for the pinching ‘D’ to keep it in.
much more from Scotty on numerous NHL topics, well worth a visit…
Detroit fans, anyone have a feeling we just may be seeing the recommendation above tonight?
from Jim Kelley of Sportsnet,
Quadruple BACKHAND: They don’t have high-def cameras in the so-called World’s Most Famous Arena? They have a 10-story building, a show club, an elephant holding area, a train station, their own television network, a venue for CBS television to introduce its annual fall lineup, the Garden Club, two restaurants, 89 suites and more money then even Glen Sather knows how to spend in what is arguably the richest city in the world and they can’t afford a high-def camera?
more “hands” than you can imagine…
from the Edmonton Journal,
The axe fell in Phoenix not long after Barry Smith high-tailed it off the continent….
So why not hang around and help if things look so rosy?
“I wanted to run my own program. I’d gone with Scotty Bowman (in Detroit) for a long time and it was a tremendous experience,” said Smith. “I had the chance to work with Wayne for two seasons and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. He’s got to be the coach. He’s got to have the chance of doing more on his own.
“I want to do more of my own as well. It wasn’t as if we had different philosophies. I love the guy. I needed a chance to try my way.”
more on Smith and the World Championships…
from the Hockey News,
What’s that sound you ask? That’s the din of the Canucks playoff hopes blowing up exactly one second after Travis Moen smacked a rebound past Roberto Luongo early in OT to give the Ducks a death-grip on this conference semifinal.
But why was that pop so loud? Well, that’s because a whole lot of air had been pumped into Vancouver’s Cup dreams in first 54 minutes and 18 seconds of this contest.
read on and Sabres/Rangers talk too…
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
Email Paul anytime at email@example.com