Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Dave Feschuk of the Toronto Star,
...As it is, Wilson’s Leafs are going to be hard-pressed to be the Columbus Blue Jackets of hockey.
In any event, Wilson clearly is smart and studious, so it’s obvious what he is doing – he’s buttering up the locals, and it is an astute move.
In that spirit, we humbly offer our short list of More Erroneous Analogies That, If Ron Wilson Speaks Them, Might Win Him The Brownie Points He May Need Should His Reportedly Caustic Demeanour Accidentally Emerge Later This Season.
Erroneous Analogy No. 1: “Richard Peddie is the Sir Winston Churchill of inspirational speakers.”
Sir Winston once said: “We make a living from what we get. We make a life from what we give.”
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
It is uncanny how many times a coach’s IQ is directly related to his goaltender’s average or save percentage. Suddenly, Gretzky – who rose more than a few eyebrows by making the transition from greatest player of all time to NHL coach without any meaningful experience – looked a lot more accomplished and comfortable behind the bench.
It helps too that some of their drafting is starting to pay off. The Coyotes expect Kyle Turris, the third player chosen in the 2007 draft, to play this season as their No.2 centre, behind Olli Jokinen, acquired from Florida to be their No.1 man. Their presence, along with the underrated Hanzal, gives the team the sort of strength down the middle that Gretzky and his various running mates provided in their playing days.
from David Staples of The Cult of Hockey,
So I’ll predict that this year (Erik) Cole get both kinds of luck, good and bad, and put him at 63 games and 55 points.
He will also hit, bleed, screen, bull, scrape, muck and grind enough to conjure up valid visions of Ryan Smyth.
And, as the season progresses, all of that will put Kevin Lowe in the same extremely difficult position as he was with Smyth: figuring just out how much to pay over how many years for a skilled, tough and admirable player, but one with a history of injury.
It will be a difficult, controversial decision and it’s one of the main story lines of the year
much more on the roll Cole will play this year…
An Alaskan hockey mom becomes Vice President in the wackiest family comedy of the year!
Seven-time Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter Alanis Morissette will give a special performance via satellite from Montreal as part of NHL Face-Off Rocks™, the NHL’s opening day viewing party and concert spectacular at Fox Theatre in Detroit on Thursday, Oct. 9….
Fans at Fox Theatre will enjoy the Red Wings game broadcast, including the championship banner-raising ceremony, an in-person performance from Def Leppard and Morissette’s performance via satellite. A deejay will entertain the audience throughout the event.
from Tim Sassone of he Chicago Daily-Herald,
(Denis) Savard appears stressed during the first week of camp, thinner and more gray, and he hasn’t been his normally enthusiastic self with reporters. It could be he’s simply preparing for an incredibly important season. Or he could be wondering what more he must do to get that new deal….
Is it possible there are some people in the front office that think the Hawks should have made the playoffs last spring?
Be serious. Savard didn’t get enough credit for the job he did, bringing the young players along like he did while managing the goaltending situation nicely by calling on Patrick Lalime at key times and getting results.
Now there’s Joel Quenneville sitting in the stands and watching practices, working for the organization as a part-time scout and consultant, which is how general manager Dale Tallon explained it.
Let’s take a look at Adam Proteau’s “bubble teams” in the East…
9. Ottawa Senators
Always-Look-On-The-Bright-Side Adam Says: Jason Spezza + Daniel Alfredsson + Dany Heatley = Lots of goals. Even better: this guy has been banned from Scotiabank Place for good.
Always-Assume-The-Worst Adam Says: I understand there are Sens fans out there who will look at any prediction that puts their team out of the playoffs, raise the back of their hand to their forehead, and steady themselves with their free hand in an effort not to faint.
10. Florida Panthers
Always-Look-On-The-Bright-Side Adam Says: Did any goalie duo in the league last season do as quietly excellent of a job as Tomas Vokoun and Craig Anderson? Not if their NHL-best .922 combined save percentage is any indication. And they should be all the more stingy now that GM Jacques Martin has put one of the East’s best collection of defenders to protect them.
Always-Assume-The-Worst Adam Says: The Panthers ranked 20th overall in offense last season – and addressed that issue by bringing in…er, Cory Stillman?
more at the Hockey News, from 1-15 in the Eastern Conference.
from Tom Gulitti of Fire & Ice,
When I asked Brent Sutter today if he’s liked Fedor Fedorov’s effort in the two preseason games he’s played in so far, the Devils coach paused for a few seconds and looked up. That long pause was a clue to the answer that followed.
“At times, he’s been good. At times, he hasn’t,” Sutter said. “It’s been kind of a hit-and-miss thing. I mentioned this the other day. He’s got to learn things in his game. You have to play a certain way over here and, hopefully, he’ll pick it up as the games go on. I thought there were different times in both games there were shifts where he was fine and there were shifts that he wasn’t very good. I’m just being honest.
“It’s up to him how he wants to do it. He can do it the way it needs to be done and he can give himself a chance. Hopefully, he’s smart enough to pick that up as far as knowing what has to be done to give himself a chance to make the team.”
continue for more on the Devils…
From Mark McGee at the Nashville Daily News:
Predators coach Barry Trotz is giving [Jordin] Tootoo the chance to work on two of the top lines in training camp. He has been teamed with Jason Arnott and J.P Dumont and with David Legwand and Martin Erat.
“If you are going to be a top-six forward then you have to play with top players,” Trotz said. “I want to give him more time with the higher end offensive players and with the hard-working two way players like Scott Nichol and Vern Fiddler.
“He’s getting there. We know he can shoot. And he gets on the fore check hard. But he is a lot more poised with the puck. He has a lot of ability. We are just trying to reinforce that with him.”
from Rory Boylen of the Hockey News,
And now this new rule will only put the refs under an even more magnified microscope lens.
“Any contact between opposing players while pursuing the puck on an icing must be for the sole purpose of playing the puck and not for eliminating the opponent from playing the puck. Unnecessary or dangerous contact could result in penalties being assessed to the offending player.”
This is how the league’s new rule reads. It sounds simple enough, but if two guys are skating beside one another towards the end boards, are the officials really going to call it if the players’ skate blades nick? Or what if the players’ shoulders nudge, while they are frantically trying to pick up speed? They haven’t got to the puck yet, so technically they aren’t playing it yet.
These are the types of calls that will get blurred together. One ref might call it one night, while another sees it as too ticky-tack (and rightfully so) the next.
As a KK reader suggested in a blog from David Lee of Red and Black Hockey, maybe we should do a poll. So we are… Do you like the new icing rule? Vote below…
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