Kukla's Korner Hockey
Over the past week or so, I have added a few additional hockey blogs to the left sidebar. Please check them out, they are all well done and updated on a regular basis.
from Steve Hofstetter, The Thinking Man's Comic,
I know in my heart that the Rangers aren't good. But I still hope they win. My hope springs eternal, always. Because I'm a sports fan. And sports fans are idiots. We are. The 1-1-2 Rangers lost three games in a row by just one goal. Two of those in OT. All three involved the Rangers blowing at least one lead. But all I see is that only two teams in the league have more points than they do. And I get excited by that. If the season ended today, the Rangers would make the playoffs. Do you know how exciting it would be to watch them lose in the postseason instead of just normally?
Gilbert Brule has suffered a fractured sternum and will be out of the Columbus Blue Jackets' lineup for at least six weeks. Brule, who signed a three-year contract with Columbus earlier this month, can still be assigned to his junior club, the Vancouver Giants, after he recovers from his injury. The first year of his contract kicks in once he plays 10 NHL games.
I think I will pass on any of these "teams".
The Washington Capitals could get an unexpected addition this season. After almost two seasons of avoiding the Capitals, Russian forward Alexander Semin may have no choice but to play for the NHL team due to problems with his Russian Super League squad. The Washington Times reports Semin's club, Lada Togliatti, is experiencing financial difficulties which has already led to the firing of the team's general manager and some of its coaches. The purge is expected to continue with a number of high paid players the first to be targeted.
I haven't closely followed the media coverage of the Islanders, but coverage of the Wings has been on par with what the coverage was before the lockout. How about coverage of your team; is it what you have expected? from the New York Islanders,
The NHL is back and thankfully, so are the fans. The early returns on the rule changes are positive, so here’s hoping television ratings will see a noticeable bump. But what about the media? Is the coverage better than it was before the lockout, the same, or quite possibly worse? For now – and I stress realistically and optimistically that it is extremely early – we appear to have taken a step back.
from the Ottawa Sun via Slam,
The true victims so far, caught in the collateral damage of the NHL's new unobstructed path to offensive nirvana are the defencemen. How is a player like Senators defenceman Anton Volchenkov supposed to stop a guy like Montreal's Alexei Kovalev down low? The answer last night is he doesn't. The principal weapons of the NHL defenceman, the hook with the stick and the grab with the free hand, have been eliminated. If the rules continue to be called this way, the qualities scouts look for in defenceman will be re-ordered. "Already, it's changing what we look for in defencemen," said one NHL scout watching last night's game. "The two most important qualities now are quick feet," he said, and tapping his temple: "A quick mind."
from the Montreal Gazette,
My co-religionists will fast 24 hours to mark Yom Kippur. Devout Canadiens fans went 529 nights without real hockey. What were they atoning for? Bad labour relations? In the minutes before the Canadiens' entertaining home opener, a friend was saying his hockey-mad daughter gave up chocolate for the duration of the National Hockey League lockout. "And she stuck to it," he marvelled. "Wouldn't eat a candy bar after the tentative agreement was announced. She waited until the players ratified it. "I asked her why, if she felt so strongly, she didn't go on a complete hunger strike. She said: 'Gary Bettman would let me starve.'"
from the Mercury News,
• Get the players' personalities more out front. This goes completely against hockey's traditionally modest all-for-one ethos. But if the new rules open up the game and create more scorers, I guarantee you some marketing person can find a way to make those scorers into more familiar faces. Good gravy, they've done it with poker players. Why not power players? • Additionally, hire the NFL Films staff to produce a weekly highlight package to show between periods of the NHL's broadcasts on NBC, as well as on other shows. Nobody frames a sport in a more viciously romantic way than the NFL Films folks. • Give away the puck from every winning shootout at a home game to a randomly chosen fan. And invite him or her back to another game, along with three or four friends.
from Kevin Allen of USA TODAY,
Rules changes have given the NHL's creative players more time and space, and Ottawa Senators center Jason Spezza is demonstrating how to best use the less-hostile environment. "No question he is taking advantage of it," Ottawa general manager John Muckler says. "Anyone with skill is having fun playing in the National Hockey League today because we are taking a page right out of the 1980s."
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 firstname.lastname@example.org