Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

The Rent-A-Player

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

Poile wondered: Has there ever been a better rental player traded at the National Hockey League deadline — and his conclusion was, probably not.
It would depend, of course, upon how you would compare Forsberg, a future Hall Of Famer and two-time Stanley Cup champion to, say, Raymond Bourque, who is already in the Hall Of Fame and in most people’s minds, might be among the top half-dozen defencemen ever to play the game.
In the twilight of his career, Bourque took the unprecedented step of asking the Boston Bruins to trade him to a contender so that he could have a chance of winning a Stanley Cup.

read on... much more on the NHL…

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Soccer With Sticks

from Steve Politi of the Star-Ledger,

“You take (fighting) out of the game, it’s not going to be hockey any more. It’s going to be soccer with sticks!” Janssen says. He is 22. His lip is swollen from a teammate swiping him in practice. “At least now, a guy knows if he take a run at somebody, he’s got to step up and pay the piper.
“The guys will go crazy if there’s no fighting,” he says. “The fans will go crazy, too.”
I miss fighting. I think most hockey fans miss fighting. It isn’t gone from the game entirely—Janssen had a doozy on Wednesday night against Montreal’s Garth Murray—but it’s down more than 40 percent from 2003, which means you have about a puncher’s chance of seeing one for your $60 ticket.

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A Different Atmosphere

from Loose Change of the Hockey News,

Top 12 Observations Peter Forsberg will make in Nashville:
-Snakeskin boots have been known to cure most foot problems
-Vernon Fiddler actually plays the banjo
-It’s OK that he doesn’t shave. No one in the state does either

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Jokinen Not At 100%

from the Miami Herald,

Panthers center Olli Jokinen has been playing in pain since last season and said this week he probably will need surgery in the offseason—if not sooner.
Jokinen has been suffering from a previously undisclosed abdominal injury he said is the result of overcompensating for nerve damage in one of his legs. That has been bothering him since last year.
‘‘It’s been a year and a half already,’’ Jokinen said. ``I have numbness in one of my legs, and my stomach has really been hurting. The numbness usually comes when I’m resting or lying down. I have some sort of nerve problem in the leg and got treatment for it all summer.
“I thought it was going to get better, but nothing really happened. It’s been bothering me, but right now we’re at the point where I have to wait and see how it’ll go the rest of the year.’‘

read on

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How Do You Feel Brett

via Newsday,

Even with Johnny Miller and now Tiki Barber in the fold, the loosest lips in NBC’s analyst arsenal have to belong to Brett Hull, who was in fine form yesterday on WFAN.
He blamed weak All-Star ratings on the NHL’s choice of a cable partner, saying, “I don’t even think people know Versus is a station. ” He called it a “ridiculously bad channel.”
Gary Bettman? “I don’t think he really understands the game. He doesn’t understand the history and at times I don’t think he really gives a hoot. All he cares about is if he’s making the owners happy.”
NHL players in the Olympics? “I think it’s ridiculous they send the pros.”

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Thinking About Trades

from Ed Willes of the Province,

...here’s a list of 10 trades that should be made based on the available intelligence. You have a better chance, of course, of seeing Tim Hardaway making a guest appearance on Will and Grace than seeing one of these deals consummated but why should the talk shows have all the fun?
1. St. Louis sends Bill Guerin and Dennis Wideman to Buffalo for Drew Stafford and a first-round draft pick.
The Stanley Cup-contenders add size and scoring in Guerin and blueline depth in Wideman. Stafford was the 13th pick of the ‘04 draft and the package fits in with the Blues’ rebuilding plans.
2. Chicago sends Martin Lapointe to San Jose for Joe Pavelski.

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Kovalev Injury Is Real

from the Montreal Gazette,

“People start talking about maybe I’m faking the injury. But it just ended up being right at the time I got benched,” Kovalev said yesterday, during a Canadiens charity event to benefit the Club des Petits Dejeuners du Quebec. “And all of a sudden I’m not playing the next game. It’s not that. I figured I’m not helping the team much with the injury I have, and it’s better to let somebody else healthy play for me.
“In my mind, I know what’s wrong with me. I have to worry about my own health and not worry about what other people say.”

read on

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Addressing Head Hunting

from Canada.com,

Primeau has said he thinks the NHL should address the concussion issue more aggressively. Just so. Starting with a continuum of penalties ranging from a minor to a misconduct or match penalty or, where warranted, suspensions for head hits.
Listen, when you play a violent game like hockey, head trauma is a risk. But the question for general managers and governors is: are they managing that risk intelligently, given the toll concussions take on their prized assets - their players? Is there a way to minimize dangerous head hits without neutering the game?

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Blogging Hockey At NBC

Along with his weekly column at NBC Sports, Eric McErlain has started a hockey blog too.
Nice to see the network set up a blog about the sport they cover. 
Versus, what are you waiting for?

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Forsberg Leaves The Door Open

from Chuck Gormley of the Courier Post,

“If they want me back, I’m going to hear from them and I would consider it,” Forsberg said at a hastily called press conference during the second intermission of the Flyers’ 4-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs Thursday night at the Wachovia Center.
“I liked it here. I had two of the best teammates I could ask for in Simon Gagne and Mike Knuble. I think we fit each other perfectly and it’s really sad to leave them. If I was to look for a line in the future, I would love to play with them again.”
The Flyers did everything they could to get their 33-year-old captain to re-sign for three or four years. Teammates pleaded with him, as did Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren, team president Peter Luukko and team chairman Ed Snider.

read on

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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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