Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Dallas Morning News,
Calm as ever, Les Jackson issued a matter-of-fact challenge to the Dallas Stars on Saturday after they blew another third-period lead and lost a 4-2 game to the last-place Los Angeles Kings….
“I think every team in the league goes through this. It’s just frustrating when you’re in it, because there’s an answer and you just don’t see it,” Jackson said. “The answers are there. We just need to get through the tough periods and keep going, that’s all.”
Jackson said he doesn’t feel the acquisition of Brad Richards at the Feb. 26 trade deadline has upset the chemistry of the team. Richards has nine points in nine games (five in his debut), but the Stars are 2-7-0 since he arrived.
“When players come in, there’s always a time element of adjustment, but he’s only one player on the team,” Jackson said. “There’s other guys who have been here a long time and can take this team and carry it – and they have to step up.”
from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,
There are several coaches on the hotseat as the regular season winds down; as many as 15 could be looking for work if their teams don’t make the playoffs or underachieve in the post-season.
While it’s highly unlikely that many coaches would be walking the unemployment line, there are several situations to keep an eye on:
St. Louis: Andy Murray has two years left on his contract, but the Blues are fading down the stretch, putting his future in doubt. The finger is being pointed at Murray.
more and of course, some rumors…
from CBC Sports,
Cherry said the National Hockey League must institute no-touch icing precisely because Foster was forced to do what he did.
“Look, if you want to wear a visor, you can wear a visor, that’s your choice,” Cherry said to host Ron MacLean. “If you want to fight, you can fight, that’s your choice.
“[Foster] had no choice…. If he doesn’t go in, he’s chicken, and it’s too bad, what was he going to do? Hold up and let the guy go in? He has to go in, and that’s too bad.”
From Mark Herrmann at Newsday,
Keeping a pro hockey career going in the minors when you’re 35 is a roll of the dice anyway. So if you’re going to do it, why not skate straight to Las Vegas? That would be the natural explanation for why Chris and Peter Ferraro, the twins from Sound Beach and former Rangers, are on The Strip. [...]
It has been a fascinating odyssey for the two brothers. They were on the 1994 U.S. Olympic team, or at least Peter was after Chris was the final cut and went to Lillehammer as an alternate. They were teammates on a college national championship team at Maine. Both were drafted by the Rangers, played here and there in the NHL, spent time in the Islanders system, played together in Sweden and Germany. But theirs is less a hockey story than it is a family story. It always has been.
The Montreal Canadiens received some bad news Saturday when they learned that defenceman Mike Komisarek will miss the next three weeks with a lower-body injury.
The injury will keep the 26-year old blueliner out of the Habs lineup for the remainder of the regular season and possibly the beginning of the playoffs.
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
So it’s Lidstrom-Brodeur, 1-2, or perhaps 1 and 1A on this ballot, with Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin third for the way in which he has lifted that club during Sidney Crosby’s injury absences.
But what about the brilliant Alex Ovechkin?
Well, he’s still got two weeks to get the young, talented Capitals into the playoffs, and if he can do that, this ballot will need revision.
Otherwise, picking an MVP off a non-playoff team just doesn’t pass the smell test.
from Roy MacGregor of the Globe and Mail,
He tore himself apart and rebuilt from scratch. He began working out almost fanatically. He lost weight and added muscle. He tracked down and found old game tapes of how he had played in his prime with the New York Rangers and the Pittsburgh Penguins and he studied the tapes, took notes and then set out to put what he had learned into practice.
If one of his sporting idols, Woods, could take apart his swing and rebuild it, then Kovalev would do the same in hockey.
Not only would he adjust the way he played and fix the shape he was in, he would recast his attitude. Sullen and angry the season before — partially blaming himself for the disastrous addition of another Russian, Sergei Samsonov, to the Montreal lineup — he came into this season determined to serve as a mentor to the younger Russians in the organization
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
The Rangers and Gomez were saying, “upper body injury,” following the play at 9:48 of the first on which No. 19 went crashing into the rear-boards after losing his edge in becoming entangled with Lasse Kukkonen on a left-wing rush.
Gomez, who was kicking his skates in pain as he lay on the ice, skated to the bench. He remained there briefly. Though he had X-rays taken, he will be re-examined and re-evaluated today at the club’s practice rink.
If Gomez, who leads the sixth-place Rangers in points (67) and assists (51), suffered broken ribs, he’ll probably be sidelined for the final seven games. If the injury is more complex than that, the playmaking pivot may be out an even more extended time, into the playoffs.
more on the Rangers…
added 2:14pm, via Slap Shot at the NY Times,
The team said Gomez’ unspecified upper body injury turned out to include no broken ribs and should not keep him out for an extended period. He is listed as day to day and could even play in Tuesday’s rematch with the Flyers at Madison Square Garden, although that is probably optimistic.
from the Boston Herald,
“The bottom line is if we want to be in the playoffs, it’s ours to lose,” said coach Claude Julien. “We’re in right now; it’s ours to lose.”
Assuming that 90 points would earn the final playoff spot, the Bruins would need seven more in their final eight games.
That’s hardly an insurmountable task. But for a team that has scored only 14 goals in the last 10 games, even three or four more wins could be hard to come by - especially with all the remaining games vs. teams still fighting for a playoff berth or an improved seed
from the LA Times,
Pronger has been a regular participant in the workouts and morning skates to stay sharp until his suspension ends April 6 in the regular-season finale against Phoenix.
“Nobody’s perfect out there,” Pronger said Friday. “We all have to work on our weak points out there and make sure we continue to improve. I can use this time to make sure I’m staying as close to the top of my game as I can and also work on the things that are lacking.
“Hopefully I’ll be able to come back from this and be in better shape than I was when I left.”
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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