Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

#2 Goes To The Rafters

from the AP via NH.com,

Al MacInnis got a big sendoff to match the big shot that defined his career. The St. Louis Blues retired his No. 2 jersey on Sunday night in a ceremony that included dozens of former and current Blues players and featured 10 video testimonials from the likes of Brett Hull, Wayne Gretzky and Steve Yzerman, that likely was the highlight of the season for the team. The Blues had a franchise-worst 13-game losing streak and were saddled with one of the worst records in the NHL entering Sunday's game against the Edmonton Oilers.
continued You can also watch Al's speech (IE only and wmp only)... image

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Gaborik Weighing Options

from the Pioneer Press via the Duluth News Tribune,

Gaborik hungers for more these waning days of the 2005-06 season: More ice time from a demanding coach. A stronger supporting cast from a patient general manager. Respect from impressionable teammates. Earning power from accelerated leverage under the NHL's collective agreement. Performance and seniority have entitled Gaborik to certain benefits, such as being chosen as an alternate captain and gaining arbitration rights and a negotiating hammer that could pound out a lucrative contract this summer. How aggressive the Wild are after the season in assembling a contending roster could influence Gaborik on whether to pursue an arbitrated settlement and play one more season before becoming an unrestricted free agent or to seek a multiyear deal to stay in Minnesota.
more

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The Tournament On OLN

from the NY Times,

"The Tournament," a Canadian import series that starts tonight on OLN, is a rarity to be treasured — a comedy about youth sports that instead of delivering a feel-good message features bickering parents, thrombotic leather-lunged coaches and kids so terrified they throw up both before and during games. That this is a hockey show probably goes without saying, given its origin, but it's also fitting. Anyone who has ever spent time at the rink knows that in the hierarchy of psycho, meddlesome sports parents, hockey moms and dads are by far the worst.
continued added 7:36am, from the Star-Telegram,
Phil Esposito, one of the NHL's all-time great scorers, doesn't have much patience for boorish sports parents. "They're a pain in the neck," he says. "I've had people come up to me and say, 'My son is 14 years old, and he's way better than you were. Wait till he's in the NHL. He's going to do way more than you did.'" Esposito, a Hockey Hall of Famer with 717 NHL goals, fires back in an episode of The Tournament, a Canadian-made TV comedy series about a youth hockey team and the players' obsessive, obnoxious, delusional parents.
read on

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Will The Real Flyers Please Stand Up

from the Philadelpia Daily News,

Now come the playoffs, and expectations are no longer as clear as they once were. The Flyers will not win the Atlantic Division, will not be a top seed and, if they make a run to the Stanley Cup finals, well, luck will be involved. The starting goalie has changed and changed again. Home ice looks like a distant hope. And who knows which team will show up for which game?
read on

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Brodeur- Vezina Belongs To Kiprusoff

from Martin Brodeur special to the Edmonton Sun,

The Vezina Trophy that I had the good fortune of winning in 2003 and 2004 should be awarded this year to Miikka Kiprusoff. In my opinion, the Calgary Flames goalie is the logical choice for getting on the ballot that will be a tightly guarded secret among the general managers of the league. Kiprusoff has had an exceptional season.
continued

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Little Known Record

via the Mercury News,

Joe Thornton is on the verge of breaking one of the lesser-known NHL scoring records: Most points in one season while playing for two teams. Entering today's game against Dallas, Thornton has posted 111 points (33 with Boston, 78 with the Sharks). The record is 112 points, set by Bernie Nicholls in 1989-90 when he split the season with the Los Angeles Kings and the New York Rangers.
more interesting notes, but most have been discussed previously...

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OLN Playoff Plans

from Multichannel News (reg. req.),

National Hockey League fans should be prepared to get checked into the boards -- repeatedly -- by OLN's coverage of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. With the start of the playoffs, OLN executives are planning to feature approximately six hours of hockey content each weeknight, encompassing one or two playoff games, as well as a studio wrap-up show. NBC will carry weekend coverage of the playoffs. All told, OLN anticipates that the conference quarterfinal and semifinal rounds will yield 15 -20 games apiece, while conference-finals coverage will span 7-12 games, from May 19-June 2. On the HD front, OLN plans to offer one series in the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds in the enhanced format. Both conference-finals series and its Stanley Cup Finals contests June 5 and 7 will be filmed in HD. OLN executives said that throughout the playoffs, the network, when feasible, will simulcast games from Canadian networks and domestic regional sports networks covering the playoffs, giving hockey fans additional access.

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Bad Ice In Calgary

from the Calgary Sun,

For many years, NHLers considered Calgary's rink to have among the best ice in the league. It was consistently good, not prone to chipping or as susceptible to ruts as nearly every other rink. Playing at the 'Dome was a respite from the slushy and substandard rinks around the NHL. That hasn't been the case this season. "It's not as good as it's been in the past," said Flames defenceman Robyn Regehr. "And it shouldn't be that way. It should be the best in the league."
more

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Don’t Forget

Hockey fans in the U.S. (Canada too) that have access to CBC, tonight at 8:00pm, The Canada Russia ‘72 series starts tonight. I am looking forward to watching and should bring back some wonderful memories. image

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Kings Falling Apart

from the Daily Breeze,

There were perhaps 9,000 (this is a liberal estimate) present at 18,118-seat Staples Center for the start of the Kings-Ducks non-rivalry game Saturday afternoon. This was an indication of the lack of urgency people with tickets felt about getting to the game, won, 4-2, by the playoff-bound Ducks. The lack of urgency mirrored the play of the Kings. And so it is that the Kings sink rapidly into the NHL sunset with a textbook demonstration on how a team can come apart at the seams.
read on

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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