Kukla's Korner Hockey
From the CP via the Globe & Mail,
“It’s nice to come to the rink and see the guys joking around with each other a little bit,” head coach Paul Maurice said after the team’s annual outdoor practice Monday.
It was, brrrrr, minus-10 as the players scrimmaged on a sheet of gleaming ice just east of downtown to promote the club’s participation with The Home Depot in refurbishing outdoor rinks in the city. Bundled-up school children sprung from classes so they could get a close-up look at their hockey heros waved Leafs flags and cheered every pass and shot on goal.
“It was a good time,” said Matt Stajan. “Our toes and fingers were a little cold but it’s great for the kids and it brings back memories.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
The race for the Southeast Division crown may be like watching sea slugs perform Swan Lake. But whatever this competition lacks in artistic beauty is more than made up for in pure drama.
As of Monday morning, all five Southeast Division teams have at least a modicum of optimism regarding their chances for being the only team left standing when the dust clears on April 6.
For a young player, the appeal for composite sticks, and frankly any piece of equipment, has a great deal to do with what their professional idols are using. Kids see the league’s most valuable player, Sidney Crosby, score his way in to the record books using a certain type of hockey stick and they want what he’s using.
The question is: Is a composite stick necessary for every player, or simply a fancy frill for those who can afford it?
The term itself might be somewhat deceiving for a first-time buyer. Composite is not in reference to the combination of the blade and shaft of the stick, which is a common misconception.
It’s actually in reference to the what he stick is made of in terms of materials.
From the Philadelphia Flyers,
Q: Is this a new concussion or an extension of the old concussions?
SG: “That’s a good question. The only thing I can say right now is that I don’t think it is that bad. I know the symptoms were definitely worse the last time. Hopefully I will feel better very soon. The doctor said I could feel very good in the next couple of days. I just have to take it one day at a time and see what happens.”
Q: What is the outlook?
SG: “Like I said, right now it is one day at a time. It could be a couple of days, it could be a week or it could be longer. There is no timeframe on what is going on right now.”
The Ottawa Senators have shuffled the deck in a big way by completing a four-player transaction with the Carolina Hurricanes.
Sources say the Senators have acquired defenceman Mike Commodore and forward Cory Stillman in exchange for defenceman Joe Corvo and forward Patrick Eaves.
added 2:45pm, from the CP via the Globe and Mail,
Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford says Stillman waived a no-trade clause to complete the deal.
added 2:58pm, via the Carolina Hurricanes,
“We’re pleased to acquire a very good, young player in Patrick, and address a need for a mobile defenseman who can move the puck on the power play like Joe,” said Rutherford. “We are very thankful to Cory and Mike as two great contributors to the Hurricanes, including during our Stanley Cup run of 2006.”
from Pierre LeBrun at Sportsnet,
Scouts are in agreement that next June’s entry draft is the deepest in years. Throwing around first-rounders like candy won’t be as fashionable.
You may also remember which team got roasted last year at the trade deadline for doing very little. That would be the Anaheim Ducks. GM Brian Burke tried his best but couldn’t pull the trigger other than adding rugged veteran Brad May.
In an interview with me about two hours after the trade deadline last February, Burke explained that he refused to give up his prime young assets for rental players.
“I’m not a big trade deadline guy, you look at my history, my splashes are in the off-season,” Burke said. “I don’t believe in giving a ton for rental players.
from Al Strachan at Fox Sports,
...GMs will have to decide whether they want to be buyers or sellers. And if they’re sellers, just how far do they go?
That’s a tricky question, and the answer will vary from team to team. But one thing is certain: Whether you’re a GM or a fan, you should never fall into the trap that so many people want to plunge into. In today’s game, it’s not wise to “blow it up and start over.”
The proponents of that tactic are often vehement.
“It’s the only way,” they say. “Start at the bottom and get top draft picks and build that way.”
Ottawa Senators center Jason Spezza, Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin and Anaheim Ducks goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending February 10.
from Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
They must rack up about 40 points in their final 28 games to have a chance. They must do this in a highly competitive atmosphere, one that may prompt other playoff contenders to make long-range sacrifices to acquire immediate help.
It won’t be easy for the Note.
“We have to get on a roll here,” Legace said. “We have to win 10 or 11 in a row to get back in this. We can do it, we’re capable. We play well enough defensively. We just have to get some bounces.”
from Ken Campbell of the Hockey News,
You don’t think Sam Pollock or Frank Selke or Jack Adams would have won Cups if they had changed teams? Does that mean Lou Lamoriello or Holland would suddenly lose their ability to build a winner if they changed organizations?
Of course it doesn’t, which is why if the Maple Leafs search committee doesn’t do everything it possibly can to get permission to speak with Ken Holland, then hire him if they do, then they are simply abdicating their responsibility and doing the organization a complete disservice.
That’s because Holland is the best GM in the NHL, period. That’s why the Detroit Red Wings have won three Stanley Cups and are a perennial contender regardless of the financial landscape of the league. There’s absolutely no reason to believe he wouldn’t bring those same attributes to Toronto if he were hired.
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.
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