Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

The YoungStars

from Brad Holland of NHL.com,

Less than a year ago, Milan Lucic, Brandon Dubinsky, Nicklas Backstrom, Marc Staal, and Kris Letang were the rookies, the wide-eyed, first-year skaters heading to the NHL All-Star Game simply to savor a taste of the experience.

Only a year later, and my how things have changed! The peach fuzz may still remain, but the wide-eyed stare has been replaced with the seen-it-all glare of an NHL veteran.

Five of the boys are back in town for their second All-Star Game (six, along with Patrick Kane, named to the Western Conference starting line), in the hockey-mad city of Montreal.

The five veterans of last year’s YoungStars Game returning for the 2009 incarnation will be joined by five more of their contemporaries—Atlanta’s Bryan Little, San Jose’s Devin Setoguchi, Edmonton’s Andrew Cogliano, Vancouver’s Mason Raymond and the Kings’ Erik Ersberg—and the 10 players will take on the “younglings,” the rookies from the 2008-09 season, in a battle of the brightest of the League’s future.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Panthers Grasping DeBoer System

from Glenn Odebralski for FloridaPanthers.com,

It took awhile for the Panthers to grasp head coach Peter DeBoer’s attacking, aggressive system, starting out the season 7-11-1, but they seem to be playing it now going 12-5-5 in their last 22 games, including a 4-2 victory over Carolina Thursday night.

“We have to be the hardest working team out there,” said winger David Booth who leads the team with 17 goals. “Getting pucks in the offensive zone and cycling teams and wearing them down. Finishing our hits. Getting pucks to the net, jamming, getting rebounds. I think that would be the identity of our team.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Morning Line

“I don’t think I’ve played good enough to be an All-Star.  I’m not mad or sad or anything. I just haven’t played good enough.”

-Henrik Zetterberg of the Detroit Red Wings via Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Detroit Red Wings, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: asg, henrik+zetterberg

Did You Know?

from Paul Branecky of CarolinaHurricanes.com,

As Paul Maurice said in his postgame comments, last night’s game in Florida was indeed unusual, but it wasn’t the first. The Canes’ two games there this season, both losses, have been statistically two of the strangest games in team history.

The first one, which Florida won by a 3-2 score, was the franchise’s first penalty-free game on the road since 1980. Last night’s game, a 4-2 win for the Panthers, was the first time Hartford/Carolina didn’t have a power play on the road since 1981. Each of this year’s games had just two total penalties.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Report- Grabovski Suspended Three Games

from Sportsnet,

Toronto Maple Leafs forward Mikhail Grabovski has been suspended for three games after shoving an offical Thursday night. Sources tell Hockeycentral the Leafs are contemplating appealing the league decision.
Grabovski received a game misconduct for shoving a linesman late in the third period of Thursday’s 6-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre.

continued and in case you missed the incident, watch here...

added 11:15am, via TSN,

The three game suspension for abuse of official is automatic, and the Maple Leafs have chosen not to appeal the ban.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: mikhail+grabovski

Another Pens Loss

from Empty Netters,

We’re always slow to call for someone to lose their job in any sort of sporting profession, particularly when they’ve enjoyed recent success, but how does anyone defend Michel Therrien and his staff at this point? We still think Therrien is a viable NHL coach, but he just doesn’t appear to be connecting with this current crop of players. And well, you can’t fire the players.

-If Scotty Bowman can be fired by this franchise, Michel Therrien sure as heck isn’t untouchable.

read on for a recap of the Pens loss to the Predators…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Hartsburg Calls-Out Top Players

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

Craig Hartsburg accused his best players of costing the Senators the game last night.

At this rate, it won’t be long before they cost him his job.

Following a 6-4 loss to the Bruins, Hartsburg took direct aim at his top players after the Senators fought back from a two-goal deficit only to find a way to lose ... again.

The Senators limped home with just three of a possible 16 points on their eight-game road trip (1-6-1) after captain Daniel Alfredsson handed the puck to Boston centre David Krejci to allow a decisive go-ahead goal midway through the third period. Then, four mintues later, Jason Spezza was knocked off the puck by Chuck Kobasew, who set up Marc Savard with what turned out to be the game-winning goal.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

One Of The Better Fights Of The Year

Chris Neil vs. Shawn Thornton last night…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Ottawa Senators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: chris+neil, shawn+thronton

Devils Need To Find Their Game

from Mark Everson of the NY Post,

A team that bumped, ground and won has gone Fancy Dan, not dumping the puck regularly to make defenses retreat, the platform from which their game begins. They’re carrying, lugging, and losing, and foes don’t have to go 200-feet to attack.

“The players know what it is, and it well get resolved. They will have to be the ones to dig in and respond,” Sutter said, without declaring the team’s specific failure.

Comeback kids, the Devils aren’t. They have lost every game when they’ve trailed by two, an imperfect season-long streak of 13, unable to put even one past Kari Lehtonen, who notched his first shutout of the season.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, New Jersey Devils, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Sabres Can’t Be Average In The 2nd Half

from Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News,

The Buffalo Sabres reach the halfway mark of the NHL season tonight when they host the New York Rangers in HSBC Arena. So far, they’ve been utterly average, with 20 wins and 20 losses (adding regulation and overtime/shootout defeats)....

Chief among the team’s trouble is its record at home.

The Sabres are 11-9-2 in the arena and the only team in the league with more regulation home losses is Atlanta (12). Buffalo led the NHL in home scoring last season but is just 13th this year.

Things are even goofier on special teams when looking at numbers entering Thursday’s games. The power play is just 17th at home (17.8 percent) but third on the road (24.7). The penalty killers are 10th downtown (83.5) but second out of town (89.5).

Early in the year, coach Lindy Ruff was able to brush off the numbers — especially the special teams ones — as statistical anomalies. Not anymore.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Buffalo Sabres, | 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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