Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Robert Tychkowski of the Edmonton Sun,
The place is jam-packed and jumpin’ (they don’t use g at the end of many words here) and from the atmosphere inside you’d never know the club is fighting for its life.
Step outside, however, and you’d never know that Nashville even has a hockey team. You almost never see a Predators hat, or sweater, or licence plate cover. There’s no hockey buzz whatsoever. In a sports bar across the street from where the Predators are late in the third period against rival Dallas, long after the Vanderbilt game is over, every TV in the joint is still tuned to the hoops tournament.
That’s Nashville hockey in a nutshell: a loyal, vocal fan base—unfortunately, it usually fits under one roof.
“When we came here this was a market that had never seen hockey before in their lives,” said David Poile, the GM in Nashville since the Preds opened for business in 1998. “Over a nine-year period, the progress has been good, but, having said that, it needs to be better.”
from Kevin Paul Dupont of the Boston Globe,
So as not to raise PA ire over staffing levels (read: potential job loss), the coach would be mandated to dress 18 skaters and two goalies, as has been the case for decades. However, prior to the opening faceoff, the coach would have to designate his lineup of nine forwards and five backliners, effectively rendering the other four players on his bench as reserves.
Here’s the hitch: As in baseball, once the coach opts to bring in a reserve, he would have to pull one of his forwards or defensemen for the remainder of the game.
more (this snippet is found on page 2)
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
It has taken almost two years for the players to figure it out and to regain their edge after sitting out one year then returning to a league where the game’s “flashpoints” had all but been eliminated, as Gary Bettman boasted last year in the middle of a hard-salary-cap-campaign victory tour.
But now that the players and teams have figured it out; now that the games are better than they’ve been in years; now that the passion is back; and now that hockey is hockey again, we are confronted with hand-wringers across the continent doing what they do best: wringing their hands.
They’re well-meaning, of course. How do we know? Because at some point or another they urge us to, “Think of the children!”
from the CP via Metro News,
Hockey commentator Don Cherry dismissed Colin Campbell’s assertion that the NHL needs to look into fighting.
“This is a violent sport, a tough sport,” Cherry said on television Saturday. “We gotta play the game, people are paying money, it’s entertainment.”
Cherry was responding to comments made by Campbell in an interview with The Canadian Press Thursday.
update 8:49pm, You can watch this week’s Coaches Corner here.
hanks to KK member SteveNJ…
Two important Eastern matchups will air this Sunday on NBC.
12:00 Noon EDT
The NHL On NBC Countdown to Faceoff
Host: Bill Clement
Analysts: Ray Ferraro and Brett Hull
12:30 PM EDT
The NHL On NBC
Game of the Week
Boston Bruins vs. Pittsburgh Penguins
AVAILABLE IN HD
Also Airing on NHL Center Ice
Play By Play: Mike Emrick
Color: Eddie Olczyk
Inside the Glass: Pierre McGuire
Will air in the following U.S. NHL markets, and in a total of 89.8% of the United States: Boston, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Carolina, Atlanta, Washington, Tampa Bay, Florida, Detroit, Nashville, Columbus, St. Louis, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Jose, Anaheim, Dallas, Phoenix, Minnesota, Colorado.
from the New York Times,
Still, the feeling persists, and not only among fans, that finishing first over all is an energy-sapping waste of effort. Perhaps more disturbingly, it persists among the players.
“I don’t care if we win the Presidents’ Trophy, or we finish first by 20 points,” Nashville goalie Tomas Vokoun said last weekend. “I’m here to play for the Cup. No one’s going to remember who won the Presidents’ Trophy.”
Or, as Randy McKay, a Devils defenseman, put it in 2000, “Who cares?”
Even the coaches of the teams now vying for the Presidents’ Trophy seem lukewarm about the honor.
from the Canon City Daily Record,
Hated arch-rival Detroit could also land in that top spot and wouldn’t that be sweet — an Avs sweep to finish Detroit off in the first round….
The Avs have eight games left in the regular season— with six against division rivals.
It may take Colorado until the last game of the regular season (against Calgary), but they will make it into the playoffs and keep the streak alive of having never missed the playoffs since moving to Denver.
more on the Avs…
via the CP at Sportsnet,
Former NHL agent David Frost is facing a number of charges after a former NHL player’s credit card was used to buy gas.
Staff Sgt. Chris Scott of the Kingston police says Frost was arrested Friday and released with conditions.
The 40-year-old is facing charges of fraud, impersonation and breach of probation.
Frost is scheduled to appear in a Kingston court on March 27.
On March 14, police said a man tried to pay for nearly $90 in fuel using a credit card belonging to Mike Danton.
Ville Nieminen hit Brett Lebda into the boards, driving his head into the glass. Lebda was bleeding, taken off on a stretcher.
I thought I saw some movement in his legs and arms…
Nieminen got five and a game.
update 2:46pm, Concussion for Lebda, alert and awake, going to the hospital.
from the National Post,
“Are you OK, hon,” she asks, gently, the words delivered with a sweetness that show she has never stopped loving the man in front of her.
“It is so hard for me to express,” she says. “They tell you there is no such thing as a soulmate, but Dave is mine. I knew right off the bat that we would get married. “He is such a kind man.”
Dave Balon’s clear blue eyes shift toward the sound of his wife’s voice and lock on to her loving gaze. “It’s been a long time for us, eh, honey?” Gwen says. “Yeah,” he whispers.
Balon used to talk in torrents. Words would pour out of his mouth so fast, and so softly uttered, that the hockey writers who hung around the dressing rooms in New York, Montreal, Minnesota and, at the sad end of his 13-year National Hockey League career, Vancouver, would scribble madly or risk missing what Balon had to say.
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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