Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Vancouver Sun,
This Canuck team was not constructed by general manager Dave Nonis and coach Alain Vigneault to win a Stanley Cup. Yet. A year from now, two years, maybe. Were there enough truth serum to go around, few people in the Canuck organization expected when the season began to be even this far—four games into the second round, down 3-1 against a Ducks team picked by many to win everything
But Vigneault and Luongo raised the bar, so here we are. Now, the bar looks hopelessly out of reach.
Needing a win tonight to prolong their season, the Canucks have no goaltending or special-teams advantage. And the Sedins are being badly outplayed by their checking-centre neighbour from Sweden, Samuel Pahlsson, the best player you never heard of until this series.
from the NY Post,
And that view was not definitive, possibly because the NHL has yet to install high-definition cameras for the overhead looks that virtually always are used to determine whether the puck entered the goal. According to Campbell, the league hopes to have those video improvements in place by next season.
“We haven’t gone to it sooner because the technology is getting better month by month,” Campbell said. “You don’t want to buy something that is outmoded right away; there’s a lot of rewiring involved.
“We have sent [senior vice president of broadcasting] John Shannon to a show in Las Vegas to look at what’s available before we make a multimillion dollar investment in new equipment. I have an estimate on my desk now.”
via the New York Times,
In Tuesday’s game, Campbell said they had the best available situation because the overhead shots were from high-definition cameras. But none of them provided a picture that showed the puck entirely over the goal line.
“We’ve tried to perfect it, or at least make it as flawless as possible,” Campbell said. “But there’s always going to be judgment involved.”
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
On his goal, Lang said Rivet’s decision to back off surprised him.
“Definitely, it gave me a little more time and space. I think he just didn’t want to risk it, that I would pass it and then Johan [Franzen] would have a breakaway. But he made a split-second decision and I think he made the right one for me.”
Sharks’ coach Ron Wilson was unhappy with his team’s defensive play on the tying goal, by Lang. Without naming names, he suggested his players were cheating on the offensive side of the puck, instead of paying attention to their assignments. For the record, the Sharks’ forwards on the ice for the winning goal were Patrick Marleau, Bill Guerin and Rismiller.
“We blew the game in the last minute,” said Wilson. “They’re a damn good hockey team and they were desperate. We need a couple of guys to wake up in the series, or it’s going to be over….”
from Mark Whicker of the OC Register,
But Brian Burke says that you should save some of your applause for Linden tonight. If not for him, Burke says, NHL players might still be working in Omsk and Hamburg and Zurich.
Because Linden was the president of the Players Association in 2005 and looked for solutions instead of scorched earth, a projected two-year lockout ended after one year. Obscured as it might be by 24-hour poker, the league is laboriously coming back.
“Without him we might still be out,” said Burke, the Ducks general manager who was Vancouver’s assistant GM when Linden signed, and was Vancouver’s GM when Linden returned in ‘02.
“He got a small group of players and management together and kept trying to get something done. He showed a lot of leadership.”
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
Martin Brodeur again had trouble stopping shots, but that didn’t stop the New Jersey Devils goalie from firing a wicked shot of his own.
The shot was aimed directly at Senators goalie Ray Emery, the guy whose team is now up 3-1 in the Eastern Conference semi-final series with a 3-2 win over the Devils last night.
“We finally proved if we shoot pucks at Emery, he doesn’t look too good,” said Brodeur. “Right now, nobody expects us to pull this off. We’re trying to create history, to a certain extent.”
Mathieu Schneider scores in OT on the power play to tie the series at 2-2.
Now a best 2 out of 3 series with two games in Detroit and one in San Jose.
from Ivar Ekman at the New York Times,
But with little to offer except a faint smell of rotten fish when the wind blows from the direction of the pulp mill a few miles away, Ornskoldsvik continues to churn out great hockey players like a factory.
Perhaps there is something in the water here. Or the pizza. Apart from skates, sticks and pucks, the one thing that all of Ornskoldsvik’s great hockey sons have in common is that they have fueled their growth with food from the town’s unofficial hockey pizzeria, Mammamia. The hockey-loving pizza maker, Giordano Sternad, denies adding a secret ingredient to his pies. But he admits to being an important part of a close-knit hockey community that comprises most of the town.
from Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News,
“I’d like to hear your opinion, not what the Stars are telling you, regarding the personnel provided by Armstrong and the lack of playoff success under Tippett,” wrote one reader.
While another was less tactful by saying, “So wait by your mailbox for Armstrong’s Christmas party invite, since you have not been critical of him, and I’m sure it will be there soon. Armstrong needs to go!”
For the record, I have not been invited to the Christmas party, and it is somewhat disturbing, but that’s not the reason I have not fried the GM or the coaches.
Honestly, my paper would prefer I not make declarations about firing GMs and coaches. While columnists like Tim Cowlishaw and Jean-Jacques Taylor have the ability to profess their opinions – and have done so – my job is reporting and analysis. The line between analysis and opinion is a fine one – and the more newspapers rely on things such as blogs and newsletters to deliver our product, it gets even more blurred.
read on for news on the Dallas Stars…
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
The Detroit-born, Boston-raised son of Bobby Grier - a former New England Patriots’ player personnel director who now works for the Houston Texans as their associate director of scouting — Grier was raised in a sports family, so he understood, from an early age, the demands of the profession, and the need to carry himself in a professional manner.
“All the little detail things are huge to Mike,” said Wilson. “He comes from a coaching family. If you talk to him about what his dad said to him along the way, it was all about being a professional and paying attention to detail. You don’t have to do much coaching with Mike.”
from the San Jose Sharks,
Holmstrom is notorious for sitting directly in front of the netminder, and while it may ultimately be the goaltender’s problem, Nabokov is simply the last line of defense and the blueliners and forwards can help deter any potential problems as well.
“He gets there as early as possible,” said Hannan of Holmstrom’s offensive position. “You can get in front of him or lift his stick.”
Being in front of Holmstrom to stop a shot, prevents the goalie from being screened. Working his stick keeps the Red Wings forward from grabbing any rebounds or tipping for a redirect.
“You can’t allow any second chances,” said Hannan. “He’s good at tipping the puck. He knows where to screen and how to tip.”
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.
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