Kukla's Korner

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Thrashers & Oilers Rumors

Spector takes a closer look at talk about a deal between Edmonton and Atlanta. Plus more speculation about Forsberg…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Atlanta Thrashers, Edmonton Oilers, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: atlanta+thrashers, edmonton+oilers, rumors

Crosby’s “Wild Fever”

From Michael Russo at the Star-Tribune,

When “Sid the Kid” really was a kid, or more accurately a hotshot teenager burning out red goal lights for fun at Shattuck-St. Mary’s in Faribault, Minn., Crosby, like thousands of Minnesotans, got caught up in Wild Fever. It was 2003, and the Wild was in the midst of its Cinderella run to the Western Conference finals. Crosby, a native of Nova Scotia, was 15 years old attending the Minnesota boarding school/hockey haven, and he spent many nights cheering on the Wild down at 7th and Kellogg.

“When Minnesota made the run there, I was lucky enough to see all the playoff games and go to games as a fan,” Crosby said during a telephone interview. “I went to five or 10 games during the year, too, and every game was sold out. Even for a regular-season game, the atmosphere there is pretty amazing.

“But in the playoffs, especially, it was a fun place to be. I remember thinking, ‘Boy, this would be a cool place to play,’ so it’s kind of fun that I’m going to have a chance to finally play there.”

more…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: minnesota+wild, pittsburgh+penguins, sidney+crosby

LaBarbera Sweating Up His Jersey

From Lisa Dillman at the LA Times,

Hockey players sweat.  So, tell us something we don’t know.

Except not all sweating athletes are created equal, and some perspire more than others. Put Kings goalie Jason LaBarbera squarely in that latter camp, which has created some interesting challenges for this season.

The new Reebok Edge uniform system may be too efficient in repelling sweat from jerseys, so much so that it is wreaking havoc with LaBarbera’s gloves. He said that he probably doesn’t shoot the puck quite as well at the end of the period because of his slippery hands.

“I sweat a lot. I’m kind of known for it,” LaBarbera said recently. “I’ve always been like that. I’ve noticed it more so in my gloves this year than anything. You can feel it dripping into your gloves.”

continued…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Los Angeles Kings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: goalies, jason+labarbera, los+angeles+kings

Ottawa Playing to Win

From Allen Panzeri at the Ottawa Citizen,

Ottawa Senators coach John Paddock never would have predicted that his team would zip through the first 10 games with a 9-1 record.

He won’t predict the pattern is going to continue, either. The Senators are not going to finish 72-10. The National Hockey League is just too good for any team to do that.  However, if it did, if it continued to play at this opening level for the next 72 regular-season games, Paddock would be a happy man. After all, that’s the goal of any hockey team: to win every game it plays.

“If you’re not trying to be 82-0. “you’re not trying,” Paddock said yesterday.  “Dany Heatley’s paid to score goals, yes, but, really, he’s paid to win, and so are all the players. That’s their job.”

continued…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ottawa+senators

Tarnstrom Odd Man Out in Edmonton

From Jim Matheson at The Edmonton Journal,

The writing may be on the wall for Dick Tarnstrom, who has been beaten out of a regular defence spot, for now, by the inspired pairing of two young Edmonton Oilers puck-movers.

Tom Gilbert and Denis Grebeshkov were on the ice with two minutes left Sunday in Anaheim as coach Craig MacTavish tried to get a short-handed score that Andrew Cogliano provided.

Tarnstrom, who was signed to a one-year, $2-million contract, has sat out two of the last three games at a time when the Oilers are missing two of their top four defencemen—Sheldon Souray and Joni Pitkanen—to injury.

continued…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dick+tarnstrom, edmonton+oilers

Learning From Mistakes

From Len Ziehm at the Chicago Sun-Times,

Fights in his last two games left Koci with a broken nose and a deep gash between the eyes that required 10 stitches. He clearly was beaten by the Boston Bruins’ Zdeno Chara on Thursday, but he insists he won’t be afraid to fight him again. He’ll just change his style.

‘‘Usually I’m a more defensive fighter, but my last two fights I tried to kill the guys,’’ Koci said. ‘‘I got confidence from my first couple fights, and I tried to be more aggressive. That’s not the way I usually fight, and that’s why I got hurt. You learn from your mistakes.’‘

Koci was the first opponent to take on Chara since he joined the Bruins more than a year ago.

more…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: chicago+blackhawks, david+koci, fighting

Veteran Coyotes Need to Stay Calm

From Jim Gintonio at The Arizona Republic,

Young team or not, losing is never easy to take, and Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky says it’s important that players not get caught up in a mode of frustration.

“They want to do well, they want to win, and you can get frustrated,” he said. “The worst thing that could happen for this team is that our older guys show that frustration because it bleeds through the hockey team. All of a sudden, you see a guy like (Daniel) Carcillo out there and being very frustrated.

“As I said to Shane (captain Shane Doan) … our older guys got to stay calm and relaxed. If they can stay calm and cool on the bench … it’s infectious to the younger guys, and it’s imperative that they stay focused.”

continued… (*Coyotes at 5 losses in first 6 home games)

Filed in: NHL Teams, d, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: phoenix+coyotes

Tortorella Frustrated

From Erik Erlendsson at The Tampa Tribune,

After the game, Lightning coach John Tortorella didn’t hide his frustration with his team’s play in an expletive-laden, two-answer session with the media.

‘We were undisciplined, but up until then we had one player play, our goalie,’ Tortorella said. ‘Our goalie gives us a chance after two periods and we can’t put 20 minutes of disciplined hard hockey together, so we’re not even close tonight, not even close, so we don’t deserve anything. We spent more time looking at referees for calls ... moaning about it instead of playing, so we don’t deserve to win tonight.

‘It’s very frustrating to see one guy show up tonight and play, and that’s our goalie. That’s it.’

more… (*Lightning have lost all 4 of their road games this season)

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: tampa+bay+lighting

Ovechkin a Mentor

From Mark Zwolinski at the Toronto Star,

Alex Ovechkin has become many things in Washington: a celebrity, a millionaire and a hero.  Now he’s a mentor and role model.

The 22-year-old has opened up his home to newcomer Nicklas Backstrom, and is helping the Swedish rookie adapt to hockey and life in the U.S. capital.

“I remember being a rookie and Dainius Zubrus, he helped me, so I wanted to give back the way Dainius did for me,” said Ovechkin, whose two goals lifted the Capitals to a 7-1 win over the Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.

“OV (Ovechkin) has been very good for Nicklas, he takes him all over and kind of shows him around,” Capitals coach Glen Hanlon said. “Dainius was great with him, and now it hasn’t taken him long to reciprocate.”

continued…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+ovechkin, nicklas+backstrom, washington+capitals

Jagr Shows Teeth

From Larry Brooks at the NYP,

“After Saturday, Jaromir and I sat in the locker room until 12 o’clock, talking about changing the power play, and then [Sunday] we practiced it,” said Shanahan. “Jaromir really takes it personally, being here, and winning.”

Lundqvist was outstanding again. Ryan Hollweg had a mighty fine game going up and down the wing. Chris Drury was more involved in the action than he’d been since the opener. The defense played a simple game. The Rangers got pucks in and pucks out and Jagr got a puck in the mouth.

Someone wanted to know whether Jagr lost his original teeth.

“A gentleman never tells,” he said, with a Jack-o-Lantern grin. “But I think if I paid $20,000 for them, they’re mine.”

more…

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jaromir+jagr, new+york+rangers

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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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