Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jody Vance at Slam,
Prior to being swarmed by the media throng Tuesday, my Leafs TV gig afforded me an exclusive one-on-one with Alex Ovechkin.
This was certainly an interview I won’t soon forget.
Ovechkin is a presence even in an empty NHL visitors’ dressing room: Young, yet with eyes filled with the wisdom that comes from having shouldered so much pressure in his 21 years.
We go right to the flashy yellow laces and tell-tale tinted visor on his No. 8 helmet resting on the shelf above. Fashion statements, he says, “Laces to not be like others—same with visor—I do not want to be same as everyone. To stand out.”
from the Chicago Tribune,
But as the Hawks begin a four-game trip Saturday in Phoenix, that number could rise. The Hawks are expected to recall defensemen Dustin Byfuglien and Dave Koci on Thursday.
In the case of Byfuglien, he likely will replace James Wisniewski, who will have surgery Thursday to repair his right ACL, which he injured Tuesday. Wisniewski is out for the season.
Koci, on the other hand, won’t be asked to carry the puck out of the Hawks’ zone. According to the Web site hockeyfights.com, Koci has had 85 fights in four seasons in the American Hockey League, including 20 this season through Tuesday.
“He’s a big boy,” Savard said of the 6-foot-6-inch, 238-pound native of the Czech Republic.
“We’ll see next week. We may have to dance, I don’t know.”
from Terry Frei of the Denver Post,
Moore said he’s totally committed to trying to get back into the NHL.
“You’re either 100 percent committed to something or you will not be successful at it. I have not given any thought to doing anything else,” he said. “Until the doctors tell me unequivocally that I’m not coming back and I won’t ever be cleared, I guess I won’t think about it.”
He said he remains grateful for the “tremendous and uplifting” support he has received from Colorado fans. Team officials, he said, “let me know they would be there for me if I needed anything, and I hope that’s the case. But I guess that’s how it goes when your contract is up. You’re kind of on your own to deal with the situation.”
from the Vancouver Province,
After a leopard-skin brassiere was tossed onto the ice Tuesday night in Cowan’s honour, the wags came out in full force with new, colourful monikers for Cowan, whose five goals in three games has turned him into a folk hero.
Hooter Shooter and Cowan the Brabarian are the best two. Cash Cow is pretty good. J.C. Superstar doesn’t quite have the zing.
Heavy Eric even has a song out already, Cowan Days (to Purple Haze—“Excuse me while I hit this guy”).
The centre of all this attention doesn’t seem to quite know what to make of the hip-hip-her-bra.
from Matt Higgins of the New York Times,
Most goaltenders for playoff-bound N.H.L. teams are at least 6 feet tall, several speak French and nearly all play the same style. Their hockey DNA can be traced to a common ancestor, Patrick Roy….
Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in November, Roy ran the Remparts in his retirement “to give back,” he said. But many say his greatest contribution to hockey has been as a prototype for modern goaltending.
from Rick Westhead of the Toronto Star,
The beleaguered NHL players union has scheduled an emergency conference call for Sunday night to confirm to some of the league’s senior players that top union executives have been inappropriately accessing player email accounts….
Players are also expected to discuss firing Saskin and Kim, a source told the Star, although that would likely generate wrongful dismissal lawsuits. “The players will have to make a decision on what they want to do,” the source said. “It’s not going to be an easy decision.”
from the Winnipeg Sun:
In a suspicious move, injured centre Rick Rypien was quietly re-called by the Vancouver Canucks yesterday. The Moose did not officially announce the transaction (it was on the AHL website) and a team spokesman refused to elaborate, providing few answers regarding the whole Rypien mystery since he was sent down to the farm Feb. 9th.
At that time, the former Regina Pat was deemed healthy, having recovered from a nasty groin injury suffered in an early December game against the Edmonton Oilers. Rypien even participated in a couple practices with the Canucks before coming to Manitoba.
Here’s where it’s puzzling: Sometime after that second skate but before his arrival in Winnipeg, the 22-year-old re-injured his groin. While here, he didn’t see any game-action with the Moose. He has skated on his own, but not with the team—a usual practice for injured players.
via the Colorado Avalanche,
BUFFALO, N.Y. - With an assist on Milan Hejduk’s goal at 9:58 of the first period tonight in Buffalo, Colorado Avalanche center Paul Stastny extended his point streak to 17 games, tying the NHL rookie record set by Teemu Selanne in 1992-93.
Selanne notched a point in the final 17 games of his Calder Trophy winning season with the Winnipeg Jets. Stastny’s 17-game streak has now surpassed his father, Peter Stastny (16 games in 1980-81), for the longest scoring streak by a rookie in franchise history.
Stastny will attempt to set a new league record this Sunday when the Avalanche travels to Minnesota to take on the Wild.
via the San Jose Sharks,
The San Jose Sharks will be without Goaltending Coach Warren Strelow for an undetermined amount of time as he recently suffered a minor stroke.
The embattled goaltending coach is currently being taken care of in Worcester, Mass. Area where he was working with minor league goaltenders Thomas Greiss and Dimitri Patzold.
Strelow, who won a gold medal with Herb Brooks and the miracle of ice USA hockey team, has had a series of health problems including a kidney transplant in August 2003.
“Warren is being taken care of and we look forward to him returning to work with our goaltenders,” said Sharks Vice President and Assistant General Manager Wayne Thomas.
“I talked to him in the hospital and he understood everything,” said goaltender Vesa Toskala. “He’s been through a lot the last couple of years and he’s a strong man. He will bounce back.”
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
If the Penguins move after their Mellon Arena lease expires at the end of June, it will reinforce the widely held notion in much of the United States that the NHL is a rinky-dink operation. Imagine what the perception will be if the team folds up its tent days after winning a Stanley Cup.
But here’s the problem for Bettman: What happens if he cannot broker a deal between the two sides and ultimately decides Mario & Co. need to stay put? Does the NHL suddenly find itself in a tug-of-war with one of its greatest players and a Hockey Hall of Famer?
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 firstname.lastname@example.org