Kukla's Korner Hockey
Three teams face elimination from the 2008 NHL Playoffs with their next game.
All three of the San Jose Sharks, the Colorado Avalanche and the New York Rangers being down 3-0 in their series, which team seems most likely to win their next game and extend their playoff hopes?
from Michael Farber of Sports Illustrated,
The personalities in this odd coupling could not be more different. Zetterberg, 27, has his own website, complete with his own merchandising line—henrikzetterberg.com is promoted on the Joe Louis Arena scoreboard during the second intermission—while Foote is old school enough to assume MySpace is the area between the face-off dot and the front of his own net. Zetterberg has a Google-able girlfriend, Emma Andersson, who is a pop singer/model/TV host/winner of the Swedish version of Survivor, while Foote has a wife, Jennifer, and two sons. Zetterberg has a GQ face, now adorned by a russet-tinted playoff beard, while Foote’s mogul course of a nose and lived-in features look like something out of a 19th-century daguerreotype.
from Mark Herrmann of Newsday,
The decisive moment of the game was won by the fresher team. Everybody on the ice was dog tired during the Penguins power play late in the second period, but the action was so fierce that nobody could get to the bench. What happened was that the Penguins wore down the Rangers and Evgeni Malkin, 21, scored the goal that broke a tie at 3 and the Rangers’ back.
Youth is being served experience on the fly.
“We don’t have a choice. I mean, this is the playoffs,” said Ryan Malone, one of the guys who was struggling to stay on his feet toward the end of that power play. Before this season, he had played in all of five NHL playoff games with no points.
from Ian Winwood of the Guardian,
The differing on-ice fortunes of these two franchises can of course be contributed to decisions of personnel. With captain Joe Sakic, Ryan Smyth and the recently returned Peter Forsberg (who these days is a Swede so ineffective the Av’s may as well have signed the chef from the Muppets), the club from Denver have grown old and unreliable. Like a German automobile, the Red Wings have become just the opposite. Players such as Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk are the present and the future of the franchise, not its past.
So decisive does this all appear to be that the Avalanche are beginning finally to resemble the freshman that 12 years ago they actually were. It’s almost as if this were a tale of two cities - expanding, affluent, attractive Denver against brutish, dangerous, shrinking Detroit.
from the 2008 Stanley Cup Blog at CBC,
It should be played on a loop at hockey camps all this summer. Any two hockey players out there who want to be in the NHL some day should get the tape of the Detroit Red Wings’ fourth goal in Game 3 on Monday against the Colorado Avalanche.
It was a highly unique goal, scored by Red Wings sensation Henrik Zetterberg. On the power play, Zetterberg started off near the blue line and fed a pass to Pavel Datsyuk along the boards. Zetterberg moved behind the net and accepted another pass from Datsyuk, then quickly gave it back.
Then, Zetterberg moved to the other side of the net and accepted another, longer pass from Datsyuk in the left corner.
This time, Zetterberg passed the puck into the net behind Jose Theodore. 4-2 Wings at that point, and Detroit holds on to take the game 4-3.
“It was an all-world goal,” Avalanche coach Joel Quenneville admitted.
Watch the goal below…
from Tony Gallagher of the Vancouver Province,
NHL hockey has been through a lot of changes over the past few years. With the clutch and grab reaching a crescendo just before the lockout, which some would argue suited the owners’ needs at the time, the game then changed radically with the introduction of all the tacky touch stick fouls and the complete freedom to go to the net without anyone being able to even impede your progress.
But as a long-time critic of these oscillations in style, it’s nice to see that in this year’s playoffs, a happy medium between the two absurdities is finally beginning to emerge.
While it’s easy to be critical of the officials, for the most part you’re looking at a pretty entertaining product for the first time in a good long while.
from Mike Sielski of phillyBurbs,
The Flyers want all the benefits of treading on the dark side of their sport but none of the costs. When a franchise declares its new motto to be “Vengeance Now” and constructs a season-long marketing campaign around it, it isn’t being subtle in its aims and intentions. Here’s a thought: Maybe Montreal got eight power plays in Game 3 in part because Steve Downie — an energetic if undisciplined young player — took three minor penalties.
Long ago, this franchise took on a woe-is-us tone set by its owner, and the grousing has grown tiresome. Too many times over the years, Ed Snider has been graceless in defeat, letting his anger over Flyers losses drive him to ridiculous rants.
So it’s hardly stunning when his employees echo him. From their broadcasters to their backup goaltenders, the Flyers are forever crying foul over officiating, forever playing the victim, forever pointing the finger everywhere but where it often belongs.
Barry Melrose of ESPN recaps the action from last night and shows the Dallas Stars some love.
Watch the video below…
from Bruce Dowbigginn of the Calgary Herald,
Put yourself in Iginla’s place. The organization has decided to cobble together another run with the same principal working parts in 2008-09—and that means you must stay healthy and produce premium numbers. But you don’t see any young players following in your footsteps to give the Flames a long-term future….
You know that any number of organizations would die to have you play for them—organizations that are a whole lot closer to a Stanley Cup than are the Flames.
It’s probably a year early to start scanning the horizon. After all, you’re an Alberta boy and that doesn’t leave the blood stream overnight.
But if Darryl Sutter’s latest concoction of players and coaches goes as well as the past three have done, there’s a limit to your loyalty.
from Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette,
Head coach Guy Carbonneau said he won’t reveal the name of his starting goaltender until game time tonight, but Carey Price will be back in goal when the Canadiens face the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 4 of their Eastern Conference semifinal.
Carbonneau has little choice as the Canadiens hope to avoid falling behind 3-1 in the best-of-seven series. While Price has not played well in the three games against the Flyers - he has a 3.79 goals-against average and an .853 save percentage - the Canadiens have to look at the big picture.
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.
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