Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Darren Dreger of TSN,
Less than two weeks ago the Detroit Red Wings were touting a proposal for an 84 game regular season schedule that put a 6 game cap on the preseason - instead of the free for all that exists now - and included a home and away with all out of conference teams….
According to sources, Bettman persuaded Detroit to stop the campaign to increase the number of games from 82 to 84, as it was for two seasons during the early 1990s.
Sources say Bettman was not pleased with the way the NHL schedule was so hotly and openly contested by league executives last season and intends to keep a lid on public debate this year.
from Bill Lankhof of the Toronto Sun,
Everyone is searching for answers. Said coach Paul Maurice yesterday morning: “We’ve done a good job ... I like the way we’ve been practising.”
Maybe the league could start handing out a point for teams who practice well. It might be the only way the Maple Leafs can find a way into the playoffs.
This team has more gaps than a hockey player’s smile. And one of the biggest has been the space between some of their ears.
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
It might not help them win any hockey games, but the Senators enjoyed their three-day bonding session in cottage country.
They fished, golfed, played cards and watched Monday Night Football during their togetherness session.
from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
Penguins center Jordan Staal yesterday accepted a plea deal through attorneys that resolves his case in Cook County, Minn., stemming from a late, loud bachelor party for his brother Eric.
Cook County prosecutor Tim Scannell said in an e-mail interview that Jordan Staal, 19, accepted a deal in which he pled guilty to reduced charges of petty misdemeanor disorderly conduct and underage drinking. He will pay $737 in fines.
Scannell said Eric Staal, a center for Carolina, accepted a similar deal, without the underage drinking charge.
more bits on the Pens…
from Puck-rakers, a Blue Jackets blog at the Columbus Dispatch,
Hitchcock on Kane: “(The coaching staff) was trying to figure out a player you could compare him to. We haven’t found the right guy yet. If you’re sitting here in Chicago, a hockey fan, you’ve got to be thinking that you’ve got a chance over the next 10 or 15 years to watch this guy play hockey. He has an ability like very few players.”
Michael Peca on Kane: “I think he’s dynamite. He’s got that nose for the puck. I love watching guys like that. I know he was No. 1 overall and there are a lot of expectations. But a lot of people like to knock the little guys. I’d take his skill over the size of some guys in this league. He’s going to be a 100-point guy year after year after year.”
more on the Blue Jackets
I asked Carol Alt about hockey, but blanked on the name of her boyfriend, Alexei Yashin. Not my fault, I am a Western Conference guy. She mentioned that she talks to Yashin daily, and that he is enjoying the season with Russian Super League team Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, where he has 5 goals and 9 assists in 19 games.
more on Yashin and PJ buys a hotdog from Jennie Finch…
from the New York Times,
The Rangers have not scored in 126 minutes, dating to the final minute of their loss Thursday in Atlanta, and have a total of 13 goals in eight games. That is one goal fewer than the Washington Capitals have through seven games.
“It’s tough to take,” Rangers center Chris Drury said. “You feel for your goalie and you feel for your ‘D’ that’s playing solid. It’s our job to put some goals in the net.”...
“At some point, it’s got to give,” Drury said. “You get 30-plus shots every game, at some point they have to go in. That’s the way it works. We just have to keep shooting.”
added 6:06am, from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
If Shanahan were going to be 29 in January rather than 39, his lack of finish wouldn’t cause alarm bells to ring. But he is 38, and though Jagr’s lack of production can at least partially be attributed to learning how to play with a new pivot, Shanahan is simply failing to bury shots he’s made a Hall of Fame career of burying….
Shanahan came into the season, experienced. The Rangers had best hope he hasn’t become old.
from the Tennessean,
“I’m at a loss for words,’’ Predators captain Jason Arnott said. “We played hard the last two games and not one of us showed up tonight.
“It was an embarrassing game and we’ve got to go home and look at ourselves in the mirror, come back and be ready to compete. We’ve got a lot of soul-searching to do.’‘
more on the Preds after losing to the Kings 6-0.
Sources tell TSN that Edmonton Oilers’ Joni Pitkanen will undergo knee surgery which is expected to keep him out for four weeks.
From the CP,
Ryan Smyth, the former Edmonton Oiler, made good on his prediction Tuesday just before he faced off for the first time against his old team since his shocking trade eight months ago.
The mullet-haired left winger, now with the Colorado Avalanche, became teary-eyed as he lined up in pre-game ceremonies, watched a one-minute video tribute of his 11 seasons with the copper and blue, and received a 30-second standing ovation from the 16,839 fans at Rexall Place.
It wasn’t a weeper to rival the saddest of sports sob stories, “Brian’s Song,” but it had its moments.
Updated 3:30am ET:
Smyth’s comments in the Denver Post:
“It was a nice tribute to me and my family by (the Oilers). It’s quite an honor to come back to the city where you started your NHL career and be recognized like I was tonight,” said Smyth, who went scoreless in the game. “The fans were great to me, and I really appreciate that.”
added 5:53am by Paul, The first 55 seconds or so of the video (below) shows the ovation Smyth received from the Oilers fans.
Update 1:41pm ET: More commentary from John MacKinnon at The Edmonton Journal.
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.
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