Kukla's Korner Hockey
Jaromir Jagr said a little while ago that it doesn’t matter much to him, even though he’s sure to be booed lustily in Pittsburgh, where he played his first 11 NHL seasons, or in Washington, where he played the following two and change.
“I get booed everywhere,” he said, flashing that squinty-eyed, devilish grin he puts on when it’s time to have a laugh with his questioners. “Heck, maybe I get booed at home too.”
more on the Rangers…
April 21, 1951 • Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Bill Barilko scored the Cup-winning goal at 2:53 of overtime to defeat the Montreal Canadiens 3-2 in Game Five of the 1951 Final. It was the only Stanley Cup series in which every game had ended in overtime. Toronto’s Sid Smith, Ted Kennedy, Harry Watson, Barilko and Montreal’s Maurice “Rocket” Richard each netted overtime winners during the five-game matchup.
Barilko died in an off-season plane crash in the summer of 1951, though his remains would not be discovered until 1962.
*information courtesy of NHL media
*Photo found at mikeboon.com, where he also provides a tribute to Barilko
from Ross McKeon of Yahoo,
The Stanley Cup playoffs are great because no one needs prompting from an oversized video board to “make noise.”
The Stanley Cup playoffs are great because the sight and sound of 19,000 fans belting out “O Canada” in unison never gets old.
The Stanley Cup playoffs are great because there’s no such thing as an insignificant goal.
The Stanley Cup playoffs are great because there may be as many as three Game 7s in the first round, and no fewer than two.
From Al Strachan at Fox Sports,
For the most part, the teams that remain alive are the ones the league can seriously promote on television, and in the process, draw fans to the sport. The Rangers, of course, are the best of that group.
They bring in the huge New York market. They boast established stars like Jaromir Jagr and Brendan Shanahan. Just as important, they have home-grown American stars like Scott Gomez and Chris Drury. And of course, they have Sean Avery who, like him or hate him, does get noticed. For the NHL, it doesn’t get much better than that.
As of this writing, Boston, Philadelphia, and Washington are all alive. The first two command attention, just by the reputation of their cities. And Washington has Alexander Ovechkin.
Again, this is a pure treat for the NHL.
more… on the potential matchups in the 2nd round
From Tim Wharnsby at the Globe & Mail,
All eyes will be focused on rookie Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price and how he deals with the pressure cooker of a game seven in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Price has been coddled by the Canadiens since he gave up five more goals in Montreal’s wild 5-4 loss to the Boston Bruins in game six on Saturday evening. He wasn’t made available for interviews yesterday and again this morning after the Canadiens skate.
Did this maneuvre to shield him only add to the anxiety he’s already experiencing in the hours leading up to tonight’s elimination game?
From Paul Kukla at Hockey.com,
My life may be a bit different than yours since I do hockey for a living. 24/7, that’s me and although you may not have the schedule I do, you probably have been following the conference quarter-finals and have been impressed by the pace and action of the games.
We have hard hard hits, battles along the boards, grit and determination is the norm and most games have kept us tuned-in until the final horn. The officiating on a whole has been great, letting the boys play is much better than calling every little infraction. As long as the pattern continues, we cannot ask for anything more from the on-ice officials.
more… from the boss
From Allen Cameron at the Calgary Herald,
Fresh off hitting for a $1-million payout in a harness-racing wager in his native Sweden on Saturday, the talented forward responded with his best game of the playoffs Sunday night at the Pengrowth Saddledome, assisting on Owen Nolan’s eventual game-winner in the first period and playing a role at both ends of the ice in Calgary’s 2-0 series-tying win over the San Jose Sharks.
more… on a big weekend for Huselius
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
...And like another CBA poster child – the Buffalo Sabres – the Predators have rewarded their fans by essentially stiffing them. Former owner Craig Leipold sold the team before getting a sweetheart deal to own the far more lucrative Minnesota Wild, but before doing that, forced Poile to strip the organization of some of its top veteran players in a desperate cost-cutting move.
This is where it must end. And it must end with the Predators doing everything they possibly can to sign goaltender Dan Ellis to a long-term contract extension. If they do, it will require a complete about face by team management, which, before the playoffs, seemed intent on allowing Ellis to depart as an unrestricted free agent and next season go with the tandem of Chris Mason and prospect Pekka Rinne.
But the way Ellis, who turns 28 in June, played down the stretch and in the playoffs should change everything. He recorded the best save percentage in the league during the regular season and was spectacular in defeat for the Predators, even though he was victimized by a one-bouncer that got past him in Game 6.
From Dan Rosen at NHL.com,
In one corner is the mainstay, the ol’ reliable in New Jersey Devils’ dynamo Martin Brodeur. Last season, Brodeur captured his third Vezina Trophy in the last four seasons after setting an NHL record with 48 victories. This season he won 44 games.
In another corner, we have the element of surprise, the unlikely candidate in San Jose Sharks veteran Evgeni Nabokov. He has never been a Vezina finalist and had previously never played in more than 67 games in one season. Nabokov played in 77 this time around.
And finally, we have the rising star, the current and future “King” of New York in Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist. This is Lundqvist’s third-straight season as a Vezina finalist, meaning he’s been in the final three in each of his three NHL seasons.
from John McGourty of NHL.com,
Despite a lot of outside vitriol among media and fans, the players and coaches of the Washington Capitals and Philadelphia Flyers, who meet in Game 6 tonight (7 p.m. ET, VERSUS, TSN, RDS) at the Wachovia Center have been professional and respectful of one another.
The Flyers’ players, coaches and management don’t hate the Capitals. And the Capitals express respect for their opponents as well.
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 email@example.com