Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette,
In a long interview Friday that focused mostly on his father, John Ferguson Jr. touched only briefly on his job as general manager of the Maple Leafs, but Ferguson agreed that fans probably don’t understand that it’s no longer possible to put together a team like those legendary Canadiens dynasties of the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s, with a team dominating over a period of decades.
“To be honest,” Ferguson said, “I think the fans can be a bit unrealistic. But that’s what gives the game its passion here. They want to win all the time. That’s not going to happen any more. That era, those players all together on one team for years, I don’t think we’ll see that again.”
from Ed Moran of the Philly News,
Join the NHL and see the world.
That was Derian Hatcher’s take on this year’s version of “holding hands in the woods,” or in this case the temporal rain forests of the Whistler Blackcomb Ski resort, where - by the way - it was pouring all day yesterday….
This year, with three off days between Saturday’s 5-3 loss in Edmonton and Wednesday’s game in Vancouver, the Flyers have stopped off in Whistler.
from the Edmonton Sun,
“This is fun, it’s refreshing,” said defenceman Steve Staios, adding that wasn’t always the case in previous seasons. “This team is adapting to the league, the way the game is played now.”
Stoll says it’s as much about the new-look Oilers as it is about the new NHL.
Nobody’s ever going to mistake this bunch for Gretzky, Messier, Kurri and Anderson, but GM Kevin Lowe added a mess of speed and talent in the likes of Andrew Cogliano, Geoff Sanderson, Robert Nilsson, Sam Gagner, Sheldon Souray and Joni Pitkanen.
They’ve got defencemen who can move the puck and forwards who can really move when they get it.
We can celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving and Columbus Day with a couple of early games today. Enjoy!
from the Staten Island Advance,
With new coach Brent Sutter refusing to play the kind of passive, line-matching style that has made the Devils targets of criticism around the league for years, the harness is off Madden. His two goals were instrumental in the Devils’ 4-1 victory over the Florida Panthers Saturday night and suggested that this could be the start of a new Madden.
“I try to score goals as much as anybody,” Madden said. “Have I been put into position to score goals? No, but things have changed.”
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
It isn’t only Scott Gomez, who appears to have fallen immediate victim to the well known Stephane Quintal Disease, named for the defenseman who lost his game on Broadway by trying to do way too much in order to justify his (comparatively) massive free-agent contract. It isn’t just Jaromir Jagr, who has looked in need of a GPS navigation system on the ice. It isn’t just Brendan Shanahan, whose start to the season has stalled shifting gears.
From Jim Gintonio at the Arizona Republic,
Boogaard, the Minnesota Wild’s 6-foot-7, 258-pound enforcer, can rule through intimidation. It’s one reason that penalty minutes for players of his type usually decrease in the NHL from the staggering figures they compiled in the minors while trying to make names for themselves.
“The role is important,” said Shawn Thornton of the Boston Bruins. “I think it keeps people a little more honest. It’s just our job, and we know that, and it has to be done. It’s not that we have any disdain for each other.”
It can be a cat-and-mouse - make that a lion-and-rhino - game when two enforcers are on the ice.
From Desmond Bieler at the Washington Post,
We could go on about how nobody noticed the season starting for what’s supposed to be a major sports league, and how hockey gets lower TV ratings than mah-jongg tournaments, but that wouldn’t be kind. We wanted to go in a different direction and find out what people actually like about the NHL, eh?
1. Let’s start with the fact that the NHL easily has the coolest championship trophy going. The Stanley Cup looks the part, while the NFL has a football on a stick and the NBA has a basketball perched on the lid of a Big Gulp. The Cup actually has held its share of beverages and, thanks to the NHL’s excellent policy of letting each winning player spend quality time with it, has also found itself onstage at a gentlemen’s club and at the bottom of Mario Lemieux’s swimming pool. Of course, before the Cup makes its annual appearance, you have to wait out a regular season that goes on for longer than the presidential campaign, but it all makes sense once the stakes are raised. The checks just seem harder, the passes crisper and, impossibly enough, Barry Melrose’s hair more lacquered.
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From Tarik El-Bashir at the Washington Post,
In his first two seasons, Alex Ovechkin had more ice time on average than any Washington Capitals forward. Yet there was always one situation in which he’d be glued to the bench: as his team protected a lead in the final seconds.
That, however, has started to change this season. With a renewed commitment to defense, Ovechkin has gained Coach Glen Hanlon’s trust, and as a result, was on the ice in the last minute during each of the Capitals’ first two games, both victories.
“Coach trust me more right now,” Ovechkin said after yesterday’s practice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. “The reason is because I play well in defensive zone, I try to play more smart and I go to spot where I have to stay. It’s working.”
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From Keith Barnes at the Tribune-Review,
When Darryl Sydor takes the ice Wednesday in the Penguins’ game against Montreal, it will be a milestone night for the 35-year-old defenseman.
He officially will pass Mike Ricci on the all-time games played list and will join an elite group of players who have appeared in 1,100 career games.
Including the Penguins, Sydor has played for five teams in his NHL career. He won the Stanley Cup in 1999 with Dallas and 2004 with Tampa Bay and has played in two All-Star games. But through his first two games with the Penguins, the seventh overall pick in the 1990 draft by the Los Angeles Kings has had some problems adapting to the defensive system run by coach Michel Therrien.
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.
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