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Flyers Get A Chance To Practice

from Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer,

Allen Iverson made fun of practice, saying it was overrated.

The Flyers disagree.

“We talkin’ about practice,” goalie Marty Biron said in his best Iverson impersonation after yesterday’s workout here at General Motors Place. “It’s the first one we’ve had in a long, long time.”

Because of a crowded schedule, the holiday break, and weather-related travel woes, the Flyers had not had a full practice since Dec. 19.

Until yesterday.

“I think we’ve gotten away from what we were doing,” center Jeff Carter said. “We had a couple days off and haven’t really practiced and kind of got sloppy and really weren’t playing our system or style. Just have to go out there and get back to basics, and we should be good.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

DiPietro Now Out With Groin Strain

from Greg Logan of On the Islanders Beat,

One game into his comeback from a second knee operation in a span of five months, Islanders goaltender Rick DiPietro is hurt again. He took part in the pre-game skate today at Madison Square Garden but will miss tonight’s game against the Rangers with a strained groin.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Islanders, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: rick+dipietro

Craig Hoping For Perfect Weather For The Winter Classic

from the CP via TSN,

The challenge for Dan Craig, the NHL’s facilities operations manager in charge of putting down the rink and creating the ice, is to make sure the playing surface at the home of the Chicago Cubs is of NHL-calibre.

‘‘What they’re going to feel underneath their feet skating will be as close to what they have for an NHL facility and that’s going to depend on the day outside,’’ Craig said….

‘We’re hoping for (-3 C) weather and then our machines just sit there in cruise because the temperature we want on the surface is (-6 C),’’ Craig said.

Inclement weather is a test for both the players and the ice. And it was a factor in last year’s game when it snowed during the game between the Sabres and Pittsburgh Penguins.

more

Remember you can watch as Wrigley Field gets transformed into a hockey rink.  The lines are painted and the Winter Classic logo is in place at center ice.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: winter+classic

A Turnaround Can Happen

from Gene Wojciechowski of ESPN.com,

If you’re the 0-for-‘08 Detroit Lions, there’s hope.

The galactically dysfunctional New York Knicks and Dallas Cowboys? There’s hope….

That’s because the perennially worst franchise in sports has performed reconstructive cosmetic surgery on itself—and it worked! Any prettier and the Chicago Blackhawks would have their own modeling deal.

You can hardly recognize the Hawks these days. They’re winning (nine in a row going into Tuesday night’s game against Stanley Cup champion Detroit). They’re compelling. They’re as cool as a fresh sheet of ice. And if they can do it, then any franchise can.

read on

added 4:45pm, For those few Detroit Lions fans, you may want to take a look at long time Lions beatwrter Mike Ohara’s new blog.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Bobby Ryan Making An Impression

from Matt Vevoda of AnaheimDucks.com,

Thrust onto the Finnish Flash’s spot on the second forward line and on the first power play unit, Ryan was given the burden of trying to emulate Selanne, who at the time of his injury was the team leader in goals and league leader in power play tallies.

The 21-year-old rookie has not disappointed. In the five games without Selanne (including the game against the Oilers, in which Selanne skated only one shift), Ryan has been on the scoresheet in each contest while netting two goals (both with the man advantage) and eight points. His current five-game point streak is the longest yet of his promising career. Also with his recent surge, Ryan has vaulted into a tie for sixth place among rookie scorers in the league despite playing at least 10 games fewer than anybody else in the top 10.

read on

This from the Stat Wizards at the Elias Sports Bureau…

Rookie Bobby Ryan assisted on the tying goal in the third period and scored the winning goal for the Ducks in their 4-3 victory in St. Louis last night. Ryan, who played 23 games for Anaheim last season but did not play his first game this season until Nov. 16, has scored 18 points (6 goals, 12 assists) in 19 games) since being recalled from the American Hockey League—the highest point total over that span among all NHL rookies. Chicago’s Kris Versteeg is second with 16 points.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: bobby+ryan

Jean Beliveau Hospitalized

from the CP via TSN,

The Montreal Canadiens say former star Jean Beliveau has been taken to hospital with an undisclosed illness.

update 4:33pm, via Kevin Mio of Habs Inside/Out,

Canadiens legend Jean Béliveau is doing well in hospital after falling ill on Monday. He was taken to a hospital after feeling ill while attending a funeral.

His blood pressure dropped suddenly, causing him to feel sick, according to reports.

update 5:23pm, Beliveau has been released from the hospital and resting at home.  Good news!

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jean+beliveau

Sens Sinking

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

So, when does meltdown occur in Ottawa?

Not sure about the exact timing, but the clock is surely ticking. Not only are the Ottawa Senators looking less and less like a playoff team, they’re looking more and more like a draft lottery team….

The challenge for Murray is that he is practically bereft of attractive assets to move beyond rock-solid defenseman Anton Volchenkov, who must stand as one of the team’s very few untouchables (along with captain Daniel Alfredsson). No one is going to be interested in Jason Smith at $2.6 million this year and next. Dany Heatley? With a $35 million price tag, plus what’s left of a $10 million tab this year, he’s hardly going to fit into most teams’ budgets. In other words: Yikes.

read on plus more questions and answers from Burnside…

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

The Unsung Players

from E.J. Hradek of ESPN,

Most of these guys aren’t dynamic league leaders. Rather, they’re skaters or stoppers who are having good seasons and really helping their respective clubs. Although a couple dozen guys could qualify for the list, I’ve decided to settle on 10. If you have any other suggestions, feel free to let me know.

Travis Zajac, C, Devils (10-16-26, plus-12). Let’s start with Z. This 23-year-old Winnipeg native was selected with the 20th overall pick in 2004 and seems to be finding his way in his third pro season….

Duncan Keith, D, Blackhawks (4-14-18, plus-19)
. In Chicago, Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews get most of the attention. And, there’s nothing wrong with that. However, Keith has quietly become one of the top defensemen in the league.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Stars Of The Week

NEW YORK (Dec. 29, 2008)—Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin, Atlanta Thrashers center Bryan Little and Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending Dec. 28.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Goodbye 2008

from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,

Luc Bourdon, Alexei Cherepanov, Mickey Renaud, each still blossoming as an athlete and a human being, also died this year, long before they had the chance to best manifest their talents.

But above and beyond those gut-wrenching goodbyes, there just seemed to be something inescapably melancholy in virtually every facet of the hockey world this year.

There was ‘Boots’ Del Biaggio’s expensive, heartbreaking charade in Nashville and the myriad of questions it raised about the NHL’s leadership group.

In Tampa Bay, new owners Len Barrie and Oren Koules rode to the team’s rescue and promised an adventure for Lightning fans.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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