Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Buffalo News,
Connolly suffered a Grade II ligament sprain when he was blasted into the boards by a nasty Darius Kasparaitis hip check. "The initial thought is, it shouldn't need surgery," said Sabres coach Lindy Ruff, who will find out more when Connolly has an MRI today. Kasparaitis, a longtime Sabres villain who scored the series-ending goal the last time Buffalo was in the playoffs in 2001, took out Connolly with less than a minute left in the second period.more
from the Globe and Mail,
More than three dozen reporters waited to get into the elevator only to be told by the operator they would have to wait for it to go down and come back because Flyers General Manager Bobby Clarke, injured player Eric Desjardins and a couple of Flyers' flunkies had to take it and they did not want any reporters on it with them. ...It is no secret that the Flyers organization's arrogance is matched only by the number of years without a championship - - that's 30 in case you were wondering - - but Bobby Clarke's unabashed lack of class is really a sight to behold.more
from the Rocky Mountain News,
With 32 seconds left in the game, there was a scrum in front of the net and Aebischer was slashed by Tony Amonte. Aebischer shoved Amonte, and Calgary goalie and Aebischer's former teammate, Phil Sauve, joined the scuffling in front of the net and invited Aebischer to fight. "All of a sudden he was behind me and asked me if I wanted to go," Aebischer said. "I couldn't say no. It wasn't really a fight, just a little pushing around, I guess. No punches landed. He may have been a little frustrated with the game." Flames coach Darryl Sutter seemed baffled by Sauve's action. "His game plan wasn't to be a fighter, it was to stop pucks," he said.read on update 11:50am, via TSN,
The Calgary Flames will not face any fines or suspensions for last night’s late-game fight involving Calgary netminder Philippe Sauve and his Colorado counterpart David Aebischer. The NHL has reviewed the incident and decided to repeal the “automatic” one-game suspension to Sauve and the "automatic" $10,000 fine to Calgary head coach Darryl Sutter for Sauve instigating a fight in the final five minutes of a game.
from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,
Goaltender Henrik Lundqvist's mission to put the New York Rangers into the playoffs for the first time since 1997 prepares him well for the monumental task he will face as Sweden's Olympic goalie. He has to help about 9 million Swedes erase the bad, 4-year-old memory of their country losing to Belarus in one of the greatest hockey upsets in Olympic history.more
from the Detroit Free Press,
Like millions of Americans, Mathieu Schneider plans to watch the Super Bowl from a local restaurant. No $600 tickets for this defenseman, and he's not the only Red Wings player not going. Kris Draper is trying to get tickets, and Manny Legace won't say no if someone hands him some -- he needs two, since he can't just leave the wife at home. There is a team-wide sentiment, though, that while tens of thousands of people converge on Ford Field on Feb. 5, the Wings will converge in Dearborn.read on
from the Globe and Mail,
Old-style hockey broadcasting is under attack in the United States, and the new guys seem to be winning. When NBC launched its National Hockey League telecasts two weeks ago, it rejected the standard play-by-play format and opted for a new, more conversational style. ...For Davidson's part, he approves of the conversational play-by-play. But he believes the broadcast still needs a strong and precise call at critical points. "When the game is cooking, let the play-by-play man go," he said.continued
from the Chicago Tribune,
Many--in and out of the organization--believed Yawney's debut season would end in the playoffs. But postseason aspirations disappeared in early December, and now the questions looming for the Hawks are how they can retool themselves for next season and who--if anyone--will take the fall for the current debacle? "Everything is based on results," Yawney said. "I don't make those decisions. I know what I can do. If I get the opportunity, I'll do it. If I don't, I'll move on."more
How would like that hanging over your head? James Mirtle explores what liies ahead for Montreal goaltender Jose Theodore. I trust James double checked his numbers just to be on the safe side, after all, we did attend the same university.
from Brain Flush, Le Magnifique d'adieu, vous serez manqué
My heart is racing, my eyes are starting to well with tears, my emotions are all over the board. Mario Lemieux is retiring. I will never see Mario Lemieux play hockey ever again.from Smart Guys Sports,
Mario Lemieux will go down as probably one of the three most important people in the history of hockey, behind Gretzky and the management of the Montreal Canadiens.from Off Wing Opinion,
I recall Lemieux telling the Penguins cable television team that he was looking forward to returning to the ice. I'm guessing something significant changed in the interim.from the Puck Stops Here,
In his rookie year, Lemieux was immediately a franchise player in Pittsburgh. He made his first of ten NHL all star games as a rookie.
TSN pays respect to the Great Mario Lemieux,
One of the greatest NHL players in history has called it a career. The Hall of Famer finishes his career seventh on the all-time scoring list with 690 goals and 1,033 assists in 915 games, while serving as a hockey icon his entire career.read on The official retirement announcement from the Pittsburgh Penguins and a note from Gary Bettman,
“Mario’s exceptional play earned him accolades. His ability to face adversity earned him respect. His devotion to Pittsburgh and the Penguins earned him admiration. His dedication to hockey – at both the NHL and International levels – earned him the enduring appreciation and thanks of everyone associated with the game. We celebrate his playing career and wish him only the best in the future.”update 2:20pm, from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
"I don't know how long it will be before we see another Mario Lemieux," said (Sean) Burke. "Now, we've got (Alexander) Ovechkin and (Sidney) Crosby, but I don't think you could ever put them in the class of a Mario. He was so big and so dominant. "Whenever we played Pittsburgh, you were almost thinking, 'I hope he's really not that interested in playing tonight' because you knew, when he did decide to play, he was unstoppable and when he was just OK, he was the best player in the league."more update 2:30pm, from Michael Farber of Sports Illustrated,
To hell with F. Scott Fitzgerald. There are second acts in America (and Canada), acts even better than the first one, as in the case of Mario Lemieux. There also are, sadly, second retirements.more update 2:36pm, NHL photo gallery of Mario. update 2:43pm, from Shawn P. Roarke of Fox Sports,
Rarely has a player come to define a city the way Mario Lemieux has with Pittsburgh. Unfortunately, the symbiotic relationship between player and city may finally be running its course after a two-decade union that produced a lifetime of memories for all.continued update 3:10pm, from the CP via Yahoo,
"If I could still play this game I would be on the ice," he told a news conference. Lemieux has retired before. This time, it is for good. "This is it," he added. "It hurts."read on update 3:15pm, from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
This is it for No. 66. He said today that no only can he not play to the level he wants, but that the heart arrhythmia problems he has been battling since December will almost certainly force him to undergo corrective surgery in the next month or two.more update 3:18pm, from Phil Coffey of NHL.com,
As we got the word at NHL.com that Mario Lemieux was going to announce his retirement at 2 p.m. Tuesday, preparations ramped up in a big way. One of the detriments to age is not being able to remember all those fun facts that seemed to be at my fingertips not too long ago. So, as I researched Lemieux's career, I got to his career stats and was surprised.more update 3:24pm, from Barry Melrose of ESPN,
I really hate seeing great players retire. We all do, no matter the sport. But the NHL has lost some of the all-time best this season. Mark Messier, Ron Francis, Al MacInnis, Scott Stevens, to name a few. Now, Mario Lemieux.continued update 4:02pm, from Rich Libero of NHL.com,
It's little consolation, but take some time to reflect on the joy that Lemieux has brought to the franchise -- both on the ice and off. Know that he has faced some of the bleakest moments any human will face. And yet, he has prevailed. Lemieux's retirement may mark a sad day, but it's also a reminder about the frailty of human life, the cyclical nature of success in sports and the bright future that youth and talent can supply. more er="0" alt="image" name="image" width="157" height="185" />
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