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No Blame Aimed At The Sedins

from Jason Botchford of the Vancouver Province,

The Canucks are the Sedins’ team. They have the richest contracts, the most influence, the biggest names and the letters “C” and “A” emblazoned on their chests.

Yet, during their most miserably disappointing season in a decade, there weren’t a lot of scathing attacks directed toward the twins as they plummeted from 80-point players to 50-point players, taking the team down with them. It could be the other way around too, depending on your view.

Generally, the fans and the media laid off. Often, their right winger gets more heat than they do. Even when the Sedins kept saying they don’t need to score, people shrugged and said “They’re right.”

This is either a reflection of a sophisticated market where people realized the coach, injuries and bad luck all viciously conspired to work like lightning, striking down their point totals in an anomaly season. And that the underlying statistics show the season wasn’t nearly as catastrophic for the Sedins as it looked.

Or, and I think this is more likely, there is some survivor’s guilt going on.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: daniel+sedin, henrik+sedin

Boston Bruins Name Joe Sacco As Assistant Coach

Boston, MA - The Boston Bruins announced today, July 24, that the club has hired Joe Sacco as Assistant Coach.

A native of Medford, MA, Sacco spent the 2013-14 season as an Assistant Coach for the Buffalo Sabres. Prior to that position, the former NHL forward served as the Head Coach of the Colorado Avalanche (2009-13) where he compiled a 130-134-40 record and was a Jack Adams finalist in 2010.

Sacco served two years as an Assistant Coach in the AHL (American Hockey League) for the Lowell Lock Monsters (2004-05) and the Albany River Rats (2006-07) before becoming a head coach for the Lake Erie Monsters (2007-09).

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: joe+sacco

All Rich Clune

from John Matisz of Canoe,

In today’s NHL, where each player is media trained almost exclusively in cliches, it’s rare to come across an unplugged interview.

Nashville Predator Rich Clune’s recent Q&A with nofilterblog.com, however, is certainly an exception.

Among the highlights in this doozy is Clune’s insight into the “hottest wife in the NHL” (hint: she’s a country music singer) and an intriguing anecdote about Clune and James Neal butt-dialing a veteran player whom they insulted via voicemail by accident.

Below are a few candid answers from Clune, a 27-year-old enforcer who had seven points and 166 penalty minutes in 58 games for Nashville last season.

(To read the entire transcript, click here.)

[WARNING: EXPLICIT LANGUAGE]

Who is your favorite person to fight in the league?

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

An Important Trip To Moscow For Mike Johnston

from Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,

Evgeni Malkin finally is ready to listen, so new Penguins coach Mike Johnston better say all the right words. The season could be at stake.

Johnston leaves this weekend for Moscow, where he will spend four days with his most important player.

Win over Malkin, and Johnston would take the biggest step toward turning the Penguins back into Stanley Cup contenders. Leaving Moscow without Malkin's support would prove disastrous.

The Penguins are captain Sidney Crosby's franchise, but they must become Malkin's team.

This is no knock on Crosby, the face of hockey in North America. He just can't do what Malkin can for the Penguins' dressing room dynamic. Crosby's calling is bigger, no matter what management might think. His responsibility is to help the Penguins win and the game grow.

Malkin never has done anything but play, and playtime is over because the Penguins need more from their other future Hall of Fame center.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

A note regarding defenseman Cory Sarich’s condition

There's been a significant amount of confusion regarding some Tweets made by former Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cory Sarich today, so the Avalanche issued a summary of Sarich's condition:

Sarich Recovering Following Cycling Accident

15-season NHL veteran planning to return

Veteran NHL defenceman Cory Sarich was injured in a cycling accident while training in Invermere, BC, on the morning of Monday, July 21, 2014. Sarich was struck by a motor vehicle and was airlifted to a hospital in Calgary, AB. He is in stable condition and his injuries are not considered life-threatening. The full extent of his injuries and the timeline for his recovery and return to the NHL is unclear.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: colorado+avalanche, cory+sarich

Playing Moneyball In Toronto?

from Kavitha A. Davidson at Bloomberg View,

After missing the playoffs for the eighth time in nine seasons, the Toronto Maple Leafs think it's time for a different approach. And the success of the Oakland A's this season should give them hope.

The Leafs have fired assistant general managers Dave Poulin and Claude Loiselle, replacing both with "boy wonder" Kyle Dubas. The 28-year-old stats guru -- dubbed the "Billy Beane of hockey," after the A's general manager -- is jumping to the big leagues after serving in the Ontario Hockey League. In just three seasons, Kubas turned around the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds from worst to first in the Western division, building a team around advanced statistics.

In addition to Beane, Kubas draws comparisons to Chicago Cubs general manager Theo Epstein, who embodied the youth movement in baseball's front offices. 

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: kyle+dubas

Steven Stamkos On Playing For The Leafs One Day

from the CP at TSN,

 LeBron James going home to play for the Cleveland Cavaliers led to speculation about whether a star NHL player might do the same in the near future.

Naturally, Steven Stamkos was at the centre of that speculation. The Tampa Bay Lightning captain and Markham, Ont., native could be an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2016, and the allure of playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs could be there.

"We'll see what happens. It's a couple years away," Stamkos said Wednesday. "Right now I'm focused on what I have to do to win in Tampa, and I think we've really established ourselves as a team that can compete in upcoming years.

"For me, that's the important thing is getting a chance to win. It looks like we're going to have that chance for a couple years."

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: steven+stamkos

Pittsburgh Penguins Name Jacques Martin Senior Advisor Of Hockey Operations

via the Pittsburgh Penguins,

The Pittsburgh Penguins have named Jacques Martin senior advisor of hockey operations, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.

Martin, 61, has over 25 years of NHL experience as a general manager, head coach and assistant coach with Pittsburgh, Montreal, Florida, Ottawa, Colorado/Quebec, Chicago and St. Louis.

His duties will include monitoring NHL games, with an emphasis on Eastern Conference teams, assessing how the Penguins compare to the competition. He will report his information to general manager Jim Rutherford.

Martin, who spent last season as an assistant coach on the Penguins’ staff, has won 613 games and made 12 playoff appearances in 17 seasons as a NHL head coach. He won the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s ‘most outstanding coach’ with Ottawa in 1999 and was a finalist for the award on three other occasions.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jacques+martin

Hope For Edmonton

from David Staples of The Cult of Hockey,

Hope #2: That Mark Arcobello and Anton Lander pick up where they left off in the AHL. Both Arcobello and Lander are seasoned AHLers now, and both have aced almost every test that league has thrown at them. If this were Detroit, we might be going on about how sage management had wisely let them get over ripe on the farm (though that’s not exactly the truth with Lander, is it?).

If this were Detroit, we’d think they were at last properly schooled and ready to graduate to the ranks of NHL stalwarts.

Hope #3: That Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is ready to do his best Davey Keon/Pavel Datsyuk impression and step forward as a truly effective, top-line NHL center.

Hope #4. That Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle will both have outrageous peak scoring seasons, Hall with 95 points, Eberle with 85.

Hope #5. That Nail Yakupov will figure out how to mesh better with his teammates, read the play more adroitly, and find a home on the right half-wall of the power play from where he will pound in 20 power play goals from that spot, bringing his total to 35 for the year.

six more hopes...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Ryan O’Reilly Avoids Arbitration, Agrees To A Two-Year Deal

added 10:47am,

DENVER – The Colorado Avalanche announced today that the team has signed forward Ryan O’Reilly to a two-year contract through the 2015-16 season, avoiding arbitration.

"We are pleased to have Ryan under contract," said Avalanche Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations Joe Sakic. "We are looking at the upcoming training camp and season with a lot of excitement."

Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+o'reilly

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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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