Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Toronto Star,
The Leafs, meanwhile, have been one of the biggest benefactors of the crackdown on obstruction and stick fouls so far. Of the 58 non-shootout goals the Leafs have scored so far this season, 26 have come on the power play. That accounts for 44.8 per cent of their goals this season, which puts them fourth in the NHL in that department behind the Atlanta Thrashers (52.4) Phoenix Coyotes (46.9) and Montreal Canadiens (47.0). Which makes it all the more perplexing why Leaf coach Pat Quinn railed against the new NHL earlier this season, a rant that earned him a $1,000 fine from the league. "It's a different game," Sundin said. "You can't take as many penalties the way we have been doing and we have to be better in our own end."
from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
If there's a trend emerging in the early going of the NHL season, you have to look no further than New Jersey or Tampa Bay to see it. It's called tough love and NHL head coaches are demonstrating they're not afraid to employ it. Veteran star Alexander Mogilny, who's pulling down $3.5 million for the New Jersey Devils, was a healthy scratch against the New York Islanders Tuesday night.
from the Clanton Advertiser (Alabama),
In the midst of this football cornucopia, we actually have basketball and hockey games going on, too. That's right, hockey's back. By now you've probably seen one of the NHL's commercials broadcasting, as I said, that hockey is back. If you're anything like me, you just changed the channel. There were no (zero!) hockey games last year, and I never even noticed. I understand that there are NHL fans out there who scoff at me for being such a fool to avoid the "wonderful" sport of hockey, but I've got a couple of football games to watch, so you'll forgive me if I just don't listen. Has any league ever started (or in this case, started back) with less hoopla? Not having hockey highlights last year just made Sportscenter feel like a fresher, shorter, more analysis-based show. And I already miss that. I'd still rather listen to a 15-minute rant by Stephen A. Smith or Sean Salisbury than watch a hockey highlight.
from Elisha Cuthbert, special blogger of NHL.com,
My name is Elisha Cuthbert, born in Calgary, Alberta, but raised in Montreal, Quebec. Growing up in Canada opened my eyes to the world of hockey. My brother plays on two teams -- his school and city. My mother plays on a team as well. I, on the other hand, am just an actress who loves the sport and does not play -- but that doesn't mean I can't talk about it!continued
from Fox Sports,
Russian coach Vladimir Krikunov has been touring NHL arenas in the last while, feeling out players about whether they want to play in the 2006 Winter Games in Turin, Italy. When Krikunov was asked whether player recruitment was Bure's job, he didn't exactly agree with that assessment. He said the title of GM is more like a figurehead title and saw Bure as some sort of an attache. "I think Bure will be more of an Olympic committee representative," Krikunov is quoted as saying. Sounds like the forces of divisiveness are at work again.
Red Fisher of the Montreal Gazette was asked about the new NHL... via the Globe and Mail,
"It's ridiculous. You sit at a game now and you know there's going to be a steady parade of people going to the penalty box. You're almost assured of some team having a 5-on-3 late in the third period, and the other team is going to get a 5-on-3 even later in the third period. "What it comes down to is, the referees are deciding the outcomes of the games," Fisher said. "It's complete nonsense.Fisher should know, he has been covering hockey for 51 years.
Highlighting the 'Ugly" from Barry Melrose of ESPN,
Three veteran goalies have gotten off to ugly starts: Nikolai Khabibulin in Chicago, Rick DiPietro with the New York Islanders and Martin Brodeur in New Jersey. They are three of the best goaltenders in the NHL, but I don't think the trio is enjoying the new NHL. All three netminders are under .500, all are over 3.00 in GAA and all are under .900 in save percentage. Compare these three goalies, and money they make, to someone like Labarbera. Look at those numbers.
Following a 3-2 loss to Montreal last night, Tampa Bay's fourth straight setback, Lightning star Vincent Lecavalier became one of the first among top-line players to criticize NHL officiating. "Question mark is, why is it always even on both sides? That's what I don't understand. It's a lot better than it used to be with hooking and grabbing but there's still too much. They still should call more. A hook is a hook. If a guy puts a stick on a guy's glove or if he grabs a shirt it's a penalty. It should be like that. It's a tough adjustment for everybody, you know, for them too, for referees, it's their first year."
-The streaking Carolina Hurricanes will be looking to establish a new franchise record for consecutive wins when they visit the Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday. The Hurricanes have won seven straight games to equal the club record set from March 16-29, 1985, when the franchise was known as the Hartford Whalers. -Sergei Fedorov should be back in the Ducks lineup this weekend after recovering from a groin injury. -Peter Forsberg is on a pace for 151 assists and a +88.
from the CP via TSN,
The Los Angeles Kings weren't ranked very high by most hockey prognosticators this season, and while it's still early, they are proving their doubters wrong with a 10-5-0 start that has them atop the Pacific Division. "I think most of the pre-season predictions had us certainly as an outsider in the playoffs, anywhere from 11th to the bottom in our conference," said Kings head coach Andy Murray. But Murray is also quick to point out his team has benefited from playing 10 of its first 15 games at home. "Detroit came in here and beat us (5-2 on Oct. 13) and they're at the top of the conference right now," rookie Kings goalie Jason Labarbera said in a phone interview. "It's a big test for us, we want to measure ourselves against the best teams in the conference. To go into Detroit which is a tough place to play, I've never played there yet, so that'll be a good test."
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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