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Brad Ference Putting Out Fires

from Valerie Fortney of the Calgary Herald,

The roar of the crowd and the blinding flash of camera bulbs are familiar experiences for Brad Ference.

After nearly a decade in the NHL—playing for such teams as the Phoenix Coyotes, Florida Panthers and Calgary Flames—being in the limelight is second nature to him.

But the native Calgarian chose last year to trade in his hockey jersey for a new kind of uniform, that worn by our city’s firefighters, as well as trading a life in the limelight for one behind the scenes.

“I always knew I wanted to do something like this rather than retire to a desk job,” says the 29-year-old just before he takes his place with his fellow 24 recruits graduating Friday.

“What drew me to it was the team atmosphere, which I loved about being a hockey player.”

continued

Filed in: Hockey Related Stories, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brad+ference

26 Teams In Action Today

Mosf of the games played today have major playoff implications.

A great day to sit back and enjoy our game.  First game starts at 1:00pm ET and the full schedule is below…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Chicago Fans Held Their Breath…

... when Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane collided during last night’s game against Columbus. 

Both seemed to be OK and played the remainder of the game.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jonathan+toews, patrick+kane

Flames Prove They Can Play With Any Team

from Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun,

As outlined in a handful of player meetings leading up to the game, the Flames not only wanted to stop a three-game slide, they knew this was their chance to prove to themselves, the Wings and the league they could skate with anybody.

The comments from the hosts following the game revolved around the relentless forecheck and aggression of the Flames, which eventually wore them down in a third that saw the road-weary visitors outshoot the Wings a stunning 17-2.

While that aggressiveness should have cost them the game, it ultimately won it for them, setting the tone for a playoff mentality that should see the even bigger, faster Flames focus on physically punishing whomever they play.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Marty St. Louis A Plus Player During A Bad Year

from Damian Cristodero of the St. Petersburg Times,

“I try to be a complete player on both sides of the red line,” said St. Louis, who has 67 points, with 25 goals, and is plus-6.

Besides, he added, “Offense comes from good defensive positioning.”

Plus-minus is a tricky statistic in that it depends so much on one’s teammates and situations that can be out of one’s control.

In short, a plus is awarded for being on the ice when a player’s team scores. A minus is assessed for being on the ice when the opposition scores. So in a season in which Tampa Bay has been outscored 175-224, a differential of minus-49, being plus-6 is pretty extraordinary.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: martin+st.+louis

Smyth Hopes To Quiet The Edmonton Crowd

via Adrian Dater of the Denver Post,

“Of course, we want to go in there and beat ‘em, be a spoiler,” Smyth said. “And we’re still not mathematically out of it ourselves. So, it’s a big game for us too.”

The Avs entered Friday in 15th place overall in the Western Conference, 11 points out of the eighth — and last — playoff spot with 14 games left.

A “Hockey Night in Canada” broadcast, in front of what will be a sold-out crowd, is always a great time in a city such as Edmonton. Smyth, who experienced many such nights with the Oilers, said few things compare.

“It’s an awesome atmosphere,” he said. “It’s going to be an energized building, and it’s exciting to play in. But we want to come out with the win, and we want to make it a quieter building.”

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Don’t Touch Hartnell’s Hair

from Adam Kimelman of NHL.com,

Flyers teammates don’t call Scott Hartnell “Samson,” but maybe they should. As the power forward’s hair has gotten longer, he’s gotten better.

The ever-thickening mane of curly brown locks hasn’t been trimmed in about 18 months, and is pushing his helmet to maximum capacity.

“It’s just kind of a fun thing I’ve been doing,” Hartnell told NHL.com. “It’s pretty crazy in the mornings, but I have fun with it. I’ve gone this far into the season, so I might as well let her go.”

continued and the Flyers will be holding a Scott Hartnell Wig Night later this month.

image

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: scott+hartnell

Leafs Coach Thinking Next Season

from Steve Buffery of the Toronto Sun,

Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson held a meeting yesterday to suggest summer vacation plans.

Essentially, Wilson reminded his players that the organization will expect them to report to training camp next fall in much better shape than last year—and that means they’ll be given off-season training regimens to follow, which will be probably be more intense that what they’ve had in the past.

“I want to keep hammering this point home until everybody realizes what’s going to be expected of them this summer,” Wilson said yesterday, following practice at Lakeshore Lions Arena. “This isn’t, ‘Thank God we got through the season and I’m taking two months off, and you’ll see me on the beach in the Bahamas.’ No. We’re talking right now about making sure that everybody understands the importance of conditioning and taking care of themselves.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Zherdev Salary Demands May Be Lower Than Expected

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

There’s an unintended consequence to Nikolai Zherdev’s disappointing production that, unlike the winger’s mediocre 19-31-50 numbers, actually stands to benefit the Rangers.

Barring a goal-scoring spree over the final 14 games, which the Blueshirts would more than welcome, the impending 24-year-old Group II free agent will not be in position to hit a salary arbitration home run should he fail to reach a contract agreement with GM Glen Sather before July 1.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nikolai+zherdev

Fighting Not Part Of The Wings Game

from Ansar Khan of Mlive,

They will have no tough guy in the lineup today when they visit the Blues. While their toughness is often questioned, particularly after physical games in which they surrender several goals, such as Thursday’s 6-5 shootout loss to Calgary, the Red Wings don’t believe it is an issue.

“People always look for weaknesses in our team. If people want to point to that as being the weak part of our game, I think we’re doing all right,’’ defenseman Brad Stuart said. “When you get into the playoffs, the further along you go, the less important that stuff gets. The most important thing is to stick up for yourself and each other. I don’t think we have any problems there.’‘...

“I’m playing hockey,’’ Franzen said. “It wouldn’t be very smart to fight if you’ve never fought before. If you’re (up against) a guy who fights on a regular basis, he’d probably break my skull because I’ve never fought.’‘

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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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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