Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Damien Cox at ESPN,
They will be at the center of every game, usually the hero and often the goat, talked about more than any other player. Commentators will make excuses for them, searching for errors made by other players, and fans will curse or praise them depending on whether their team wins or loses, not on the actual quality of performance.
They are the goaltenders.
When these playoffs are over and a champion has been declared, one will leave an indelible story for the history book, an imprint on the collective memory of the sport as the one, the masked man, who best fought off the fear and insecurity and pressure to lift his team to the top of the mountain.
Mats Sundin has turned down an invitation to play for Sweden at the world hockey championship in Russia.
“It’s sad, but I can understand his decision,” coach Bengt-Ake Gustafsson said Thursday.
The 36-year-old Sundin, whose Toronto Maple Leafs missed the NHL playoffs, was one of the key players on Sweden’s team last year when it won the Olympic gold medal.
Alexander Steen of the Leafs is the only NHL player who has accepted an invitation to play for Sweden so far, but several others are expected to join the squad.
from Ted Leonsis, owner of the Washington Capitals,
Another season has come to an end long before we would have liked, but we remain committed to improvement and patience in our plans to rebuild our franchise. The final standings show that we amassed the same number of points in 2006-07 as the prior season. And while that is true, this year’s team was better in many areas, and we demonstrated continued growth and improvement.
The power-play and the penalty-killing units both showed slight gains. We scored more goals and gave up fewer. We realize that more improvement is needed, and we will be directing our attention in that area during the summer. In the next several months we will be focused on doing what is necessary to achieve even greater strides for the 2007-08 season.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
Shortly before the 2004 trading deadline, Satan scored a goal in a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at HSBC Arena. Instead of the usual celebration, he took off his glove and put his hand to his ear, mimicking a telephone conversation. In other words, Sabres GM Darcy Regier had better get on the phone and trade him.
This did not go over well with the fans and almost a month later, in the Sabres’ last home game, Satan was chosen the first star. He came out and instead of lifting his stick in the usual salute to the crowd, he waved goodbye. This was a sincere attempt to say thank you for the good times and goodbye but by then the fans were not having any of it.
“Last year it was a little more noticeable,” Satan said of the booing. “It’s a little quieter this year but at least they remember me.”
via the Blueland Blog,
Well, I promised I’d post pictures of Kari and Sutton with their blue hair, but as you may have heard if you were listening to the radio this morning, the blue hair is gone.
from Shawn Windsor of the Detroit Free Press,
The problem is, they argued, too many other things have—including, most notably, the names on the back of the jerseys. No longer are the Wings dotted with Hall of Fame-caliber players who spent the better part of their careers in Detroit….
Holland notices the competition in the way his team is covered. Fewer front pages. Fewer lead spots in sports telecasts. Less time on talk radio.
“That’s where I’ve really noticed it,” he said.
The Wings simply aren’t the topic of conversation that they once were.
What Holland says is so true, and the Wings must realize the have an untapped source that they have failed to utilize- The web and the many Wings bloggers. They need to follow the example of many NHL teams and begin to recognize the Wings bloggers existence.
Listening to NHL Live, a caller just mentioned he was watching the Stars/Canucks game in the Houston area via Time Warner cable.
At 2:00am last night, the game went off the air and an infomercial appeared.
Carriers of NHL hockey, step-up, be prepared for OT games, don’t let this happen again.
added 6:30pm, via Yahoo,
STAMFORD, Conn. (AP)—“We are obviously very disappointed to hear that some fans in a few select markets have reported that they did not see the end of this great game,” network spokeswoman Katie Bradshaw said.
Henrik Sedin scored 18:06 into the fourth overtime—at about 3:30 a.m. EDT Thursday—to give the Canucks a 5-4 Game 1 win over the Stars in the sixth-longest playoff game in NHL history.
“The game did run in its entirety on the Versus network feed,” Bradshaw said. “But based on the information we have received, we are currently working with our affiliates in the affected markets to find out what caused the problem and to make sure that this doesn’t happen again during the playoffs.”
from the Tampa Tribune,
Brad Richards, Vinny Lecavalier and Marty St. Louis are the trinity on which Tampa Bay has pinned its hopes as it embarks on another playoff journey today in the opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs against the New Jersey Devils.
And if Tampa’s Big Three aren’t leading the way, the Lightning’s chances of victory are severely diminished.
from the Saginaw News,
Ryan Burke did his share of work on the Rbk EDGE uniform.
Ryan Burke now knows how a guinea pig feels.
Only the Michigan State University freshman got paid a little better.
The 18-year-old Burke was given a new pair of skates and $300 for spending three days on a StairMaster stepper at Central Michigan University, helping a group of professors work with Reebok International to develop a new uniform for the National Hockey League.
Oh, I see those Calgary Sun writers are laying odds,
- Most likely Red Wings occurrence:
2-1—Tomas Holmstrom sets up outside crease.
3-1—Hasek stutters during interview.
4-1—Kris Draper and Kirk Maltby yap at Iginla.
5-1—Mike Babcock scowls after game.
- The longshots:
40-1—Kristian Huselius pitchforks a defender.
60-1—Henrik Zetterberg finds a corner.
70-1—Henrik Zetterberg finds a barber.
80-1—Robert Lang backchecks.
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org