Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Ottawa Citizen via the National Post,
...They might not hang on to a playoff position.
“It’s the reality, there’s no question,” said Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson, who will miss his third straight game tonight against the Phoenix Coyotes. Alfredsson is still bothered by muscle spasms in his lower back, the result of being cross-checked by Anaheim defenceman François Beauchemin on Monday.
“I think we will make the playoffs, but obviously it has been going on for quite a while where we haven’t played as consistently well as we can as a team.
“It’s a possibility [we could miss the playoffs], but I don’t think it’s something we’re thinking about.”
from the CP via Yahoo,
Aaron Miller missed practice to go to the hospital for shoulder X-rays after taking a hit along the boards from Jordin Tootoo late in Vancouver’s 6-2 victory over Nashville on Thursday.
Mattias Ohlund rode the bike a bit but he’s got bone chips in his left knee and is out indefinitely. The Canucks hope the swelling goes down in a few days, otherwise it could be season-ending surgery.
Kevin Bieksa, seven games back from a four-month, 46-game layoff to recover from a severely lacerated calf muscle, was also getting X-rayed. He hurt his wrist Thursday trading punches with Nashville’s Greg de Vries.
Then there’s Sami Salo. He was excused from Friday’s practice because of the flu.
Oh, and defensive forward Ryan Kesler was also being X-rayed Friday after blocking a shot Thursday night with his foot.
For those of you scoring at home, Salo is expected to play Saturday against the St. Louis Blues. Kesler and Bieksa will be game-day decisions. Ohlund and Miller are out.
more on the Canucks…
With today marking the three-month anniversary of Predators Holding’s purchase of the team, NashvillePredators.com grabbed some time with David Freeman, the team’s new Chairman, to discuss his first three months on the job, the state of the team, and the plans for next season….
NP.com: Have you starting planning the budget for next season?
DF: Sure. Yes. Strategically it’s probably not good for us to talk about that publicly for competitive reasons. Our budget will be significantly higher than it was this year. In fact, I’m quite certain we will spend more on payroll next year than at any time in the history of the club. We’re that committed to building this team right back up.
read on at NashvillePredators.com…
from Pierre LeBrun of the CP via the Globe and Mail,
He’s been thrown off his routine — which is everything to a hockey player — but at least hasn’t thrown off the family household.
“I think my wife has actually enjoyed it, just helping out with the kids a little bit more, taking them to their hockey practices and whatnot,” said Lidstrom. “She’s liked having me around a bit more.
“I don’t know if it goes on for another week if she’ll change her mind, though.”
Despite the injury, Lidstrom may very well remain the odds-on favourite to capture a sixth career Norris Trophy as the NHL’s top defenceman.
from Pierre LeBrun at Sportsnet,
When Carolina and Ottawa made a four-player trade on Feb. 11, the optics suggested a short-term boost for the contending Senators and a long-term gain for the possibly rebuilding Hurricanes.
Turns out we were all fooled on that one.
Entering the weekend, the Hurricanes had gone 9-2-1 since acquiring defenceman Joe Corvo and forward Patrick Eaves—thus solidifying their spot atop the Southeast Division—while the slip-sliding Sens had gone 3-7-3 since picking up forward Cory Stillman and defenceman Mike Commodore.
continued with more NHL talk…
from STATS Blog,
Among the 26 players who have scored 27 or more goals this season, eight of them are 23 years old or younger. With 54 goals in 68 games, Ovechkin has found the net at least 11 more times than anyone else in the NHL.
Most Goals by Players 23 Years Old or Younger, 2007-08
Player. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Age. . . . . . . . . . . . Goals
Alexander Ovechkin, Was. . . . . . . 22. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54
I just finished editing a new site, and put it online. It’s a contact list for hockey teams throughout North America, along with the IIHF. It has contact info for all the teams in the NHL, AHL, ECHL, CHL, IHL, SPHL, USHL, NAHL, and the Canadian Junior leagues (OHL, WHL, and QMJHL). I did it because I am always needing an address or a phone number, then I figured it would be a good resource for others, and decided to make it public. Each individual contact page has a link to Google Maps, leading to the individual team’s arenas.
Check out Jerseys and Hockey Love/Contacts....
from Risto Pakarinen at Hockey.com,
I would also want you to acknowledge that a great player can end up on a bad club, and nothing can save him. That winning the Stanley Cup is not the only yardstick against which players can be measured. That a player like Mats Sundin can play on a line with Scarecrow and Tin Man, and still have enough heart and brain for the three of them.
more on Sundin…
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Ken Hitchcock, the Columbus Blue Jackets’ coach, who has been to the Stanley Cup final twice and the semi-finals two other times in his career and sports a 66-51 career playoff coaching record believe that in the era of parity, to get to the final, “your goaltender, at least once, has to win you the series - because of the physical demands on teams now.
“There was a time when you could win a series because there was such a huge difference between the rosters. There were haves and have-nots and the have-nots had to go out and stone you every night. We had that happen to us once — Cujo (Curtis Joseph) did it when I was in Dallas (playing for the 1996-97 Edmonton Oilers).
“The difference between the haves and the have-nots — the first and eighth seeds - is so minimal that even if you’re a top seed, your goaltender is going to have to be very significant….”
read on and more NHL topics…
fro Van Oler via ChicagoBlackhawks.com,
Spend enough time at the United Center watching the Blackhawks and you’ll inevitably hear someone comment that this season’s game-night excitement and buzz reminds them of the days when “the Blackhawks owned this town, I tell ya! You couldn’t get a ticket unless it was left to you in somebody’s will!”
With Stan Mikita and Bobby Hull returning the UC tonight, it’s useful to look back at their time with the Blackhawks to see if there’s evidence that the team was, in fact, the best in town.
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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