Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
With Pittsburgh Penguins' injured uber-prospect Evgeni Malkin on the sidelines, patiently waiting his turn to get started, the early-season Calder Trophy race looks eerily like the 1991-92 competition, in which Malkin's Russian countryman and future NHL superstar, Pavel Bure, eventually took home the hardware. That year, Bure started from behind — just as Malkin will — largely for political reasons. Bure was trying to get out of the former Soviet Union and until he resolved some legal issues relating to his NHL eligibility, he wasn't able to play. So Bure sat around essentially for a quarter of the season and eventually, permission came and he made his debut in December.continued
Minnesota Wild President and General Manager Doug Risebrough today announced the National Hockey League club has signed Head Coach Jacques Lemaire to a multi-year contract extension. “Jacques continues to be the consummate teacher and leader, and his ability to adapt - to new players and to an evolving league - reinforced to Jacques and to the organization that the time was right to extend his relationship with the team. Jacques is the right person for this job, a statement as true today as it was the day he was hired,” said Risebrough.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
Sometimes, it's not until the second season that the proverbial roosters come home to roost. Sometimes, young stars who enter their sophomore seasons forget the hard work that got them to the NHL in the first place. Sometimes, expectations get the best of young players. Sometimes, opposing teams simply know how to better defend a player after his rookie season. "There's going to be growing pains for all second-year players," said former Penguins coach Ed Olczyk, the main color analyst for the Chicago Blackhawks who also lends his talents to national broadcasts on Versus and NBC. "Sometimes, you've got to step down in order to get to that seventh step or wherever you're at on the ladder."read on
from Loose Change of the Hockey News,
Interesting stories from Week 1… • The Nashville Predators are 0-2-0 out of the gate and have been outscored 14-11. If they remain with this current trend they will finish the season 0-82, have like 3000 goals against and will likely miss the playoffs (this is the NHL remember). • Speaking of the Panthers, as expected, Ed Belfour did not get the start in his return to Toronto Oct. 9.. Given his wonky back and status as an older goaltender, the team wants to ensure plenty of time off between starts to keep him fresh and limber. He is next expected to see action against the Blackhawks…in March…of 2009.
via the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
In September, 12-year NHL veteran Greg Johnson signed with Detroit as a free agent and he, too, was found to have an abnormal EKG during a routine physical. This time, the Red Wings didn't mess around, sending Johnson, 35, out for further testing. Johnson's condition remains undisclosed, but it is no doubt serious, considering that he recently filed his retirement papers with the league.
from Al Strachan of the Toronto Sun,
When last seen in the National Hockey League, Nolan was a Maple Leaf with a swollen knee and a swollen contract. After one knee operation, Nolan had another that he said was necessary. The Leafs said it wasn't. Finally, a settlement was reached, but not without some acrimony. "You'd like to think it could have gone more smoothly," Nolan said after the Coyotes practice yesterday, "but I understand that it's a business and they're going to try to look after their end. At the same time, I'm going to look after mine. I don't have any ill will toward anybody about it." Nevertheless, it wasn't the highlight of his career.read on
At a time when the Islanders have been searching for more offense, agent Mark Gandler said earlier in the day that former first-round draft pick Sean Bergenheim, who opted to play in Russia rather than accept what he believed was a lowball offer by the Islanders, would like to return and is willing to apologize to owner Charles Wang. But if the owner won't bend his rule against signing players who weren't in training camp, Gandler said Bergenheim will request a trade. When Bergenheim held out, the Islanders wrote him off for the season and signed veteran forward Richard Park. Two or three days before last Thursday's season opener, Gandler spoke with Islanders general manager Garth Snow and was told there will be no exceptions to Wang's policy.read on (after the game recap)...
from the Aftenposten,
The breakthrough of two Norwegians into the National Hockey League is proving inspirational to scores of other young and talented hockey players. Patrick Thoresen, meanwhile, seems to be settling in with the Edmonton Oilers. Olimb has also proved himself in American junior hockey and also dreams about playing in the NHL. He says Thoresen is "really good" and "has worked extremely hard and it's paying off now. "When Norwegian players succeed in the NHL, we see that it's not just an opportunity open to Russians, Swedes or Canadians."more
from the Chicago Sun-Times,
Nobody ever mistook professional hockey for anything but the brutal, bloody, fast-paced melee on ice that it is. And perhaps fans of the sport -- or at least what's left of it after that unfortunate year in which the National Hockey League was inactive -- aren't the most civilized. But -- we ask you -- does that mean hockey devotees have to be marketed to as if they were morons? The NHL handed Mother/New York the task and challenge of developing new television commercials to announce the start of the 2006-2007 professional hockey season and presumably whip up some excitement and anticipation among fans. "Game On!" the campaign tag line, certainly, doesn't do much to whet the appetite.read on
from the Chicago Tribune,
Havlat and Handzus have been all the Hawks expected in the first two games. Havlat is tied for the NHL lead in points with six and Handzus is right behind at five. Vrbata has a goal and assist in the first two games. It's unlikely Havlat and Vrbata, both 25, could have imagined playing in the NHL for the same team in their youths. "Lots of things have changed since then," Vrbata said. "But in the preseason you could see we knew about each other on the ice. Hopefully that translates into some goals." Yawney said he was impressed with the poise the three showed on the ice when the Hawks were in trouble. "I like the characteristics the three have," Yawney said. "They settled things down."more
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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