Kukla's Korner Hockey
Tim Wharnsby of the Globe and Mail on the JLA attendance situation,
Large crowds, however, have not been a problem for the Detroit Tigers and Detroit Pistons. The latter, which is on the verge of advancing to their fourth consecutive NBA conference final, has announced sellout crowds of 22,076 for each of their four home games so far.
The defending American League champion Tigers have an average attendance of 31,644 through 17 games this season, good for 13th in the major leagues. On Thursday afternoon, a whopping 37,359 walked through the turnstiles at the 41,070-seat Comerica Park.
Again I state it is not a competion matter with the other Detroit teams. The Wings overpriced their playoff tickets and have made very weak attempts at attracting fans to the games.
No free open skates, no discount tickets for students, no atmosphere created at the Joe for the fans = fans have simply had enough and won’t go until the Wings decide to change their thinking towards the fans.
Q. Nick, about the Ducks’ power-play, what did you see strategy-wise, why you were so effective last night?
NICKLAS LIDSTROM: I thought we were standing in the shooting lanes a lot, taking their lanes to the net. We were being aggressive when we can. Trying to put pressure in the corners, just overall pressure when we can.
I thought Dom came up with some big saves at the right moments for us, too.
Q. When you make a decision about which line to match up against which, last night most of the time you had Draper’s line against the kids, is that kind of normal that you play No. 1 against No. 1?
COACH MIKE BABCOCK: That’s what we’ve done all year long. Most teams play the guys they think are going to generate the most offense the most minutes. So we always play our guys against them. We think it’s been obviously positive for us.
Seeing that Anaheim’s really set on playing Pahlsson against Zetterberg, that’s fine for us. They’re going to have to do calisthenics like they did last night. When you win faceoffs like they did last night, you can get your match-up any time you want because you just get people on and off the ice.
You know, I thought they did a real good job of that. They’ll continue to if we don’t do a better job in the faceoff circle. If you win faceoffs and get on top of them, obviously you can’t be playing out there with two defensemen and six guys changing, three coming on and three coming off.
Bryan Murray, Daniel Alfredsson and Ray Emery…
Q. Coach, any thoughts, Lindy has already said he’s going to shuffle his lines up a bit. Is that a concern of yours or just do what you do?
COACH BRYAN MURRAY: That’s a concern of him and his team to make, you know, the moves. What I suspect is he’s going back to original lines, and we kind of thought coming into the series that we would end up playing that type of combination anyway. But our lines are what they are right now, and we’ll leave them alone.
Q. Shuffling the lines tonight, is that a message “Let’s go and play hockey, understand the lines.” Are they the ones you used in the regular season that were awfully successful?
COACH LINDY RUFF: I think if you looked at, for two series Danny, Jochen and Palmer have been pretty flat for us. They hadn’t created a lot, and we were looking for a little bit of a spark. We changed things up, and it worked for a couple games. But, you know, I think that going back to them after, you know, a couple game absences, you know, just a message that we really need you guys.
from the AP via ESPN,
A year after it closed, the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame will reopen under a new name in Eveleth, under a cooperative agreement between USA Hockey and the Hall.
Under the agreement announced Friday, the Hall will change its name to the United States Hockey Hall of Fame Museum, Inc. Plans call for reopening the museum in late May or early June.
from the Detroit News,
People just don’t have the money to spend.
“The number one reason is the economy here in Detroit—the layoffs and business closings here in the region,” said John Hahn, Red Wings senior director of communication. “These are the people that come to the games.”
The competition for the Metro Detroit disposable income dollar is particularly intense this spring. The Pistons are poised to oust the Bulls in the second round of the NBA playoffs. And it’s the first time in a long time that fans in the month of May expect the Tigers to win a plethora of games.
read on... last night’s announced attendance was 19,939.
from the Edmonton Journal,
Oilers assistant general manager Scott Howson is reportedly on the short list to replace the fired Doug MacLean as general manager of the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Howson has been the Oilers’ assistant GM since 2000 and has been with the organization since 1994. He hasn’t had an interview, but sources say he is in the running for the position along with Dallas assistant GM Les Jackson and Steve Tambellini, who has the same post with the Vancouver Canucks.
from Robert Tychkowski of the Edmonton Sun,
They say the best revenge is living well, and, while Comrie certainly isn’t looking for any revenge, he is living well these days - contributing to a Stanley Cup contender in the last Canadian city still alive in the tournament. It’s a chance to change the way people in and out of hockey view him as a player and a person.
“I don’t think I’ve changed the way I played, or what I’m like as a person, but once you go through something like that people kind of look at you differently.
“My whole career has had some ups and downs. Right now I’m just enjoying being here at this moment with a great group of guys. You realize as a player that you don’t get that many chances.”
from the Buffalo News,
The Versus broadcast crew has to be impressive enough to silence the Sabres’ popular MSG team of Rick Jeanneret and Jim Lorentz, who have been relegated to WGR radio only during the Eastern Conference finals.
Versus also has to deal with another team with a long history here — CBC’s “Hockey Night in Canada” — that features an analyst, Harry Neale, who lives in Amherst.
It is no wonder that, like the Sabres, the philosophy of Beninati and company is “One Team, One Goal.”
“We’re here to do the best show we can,” Beninati said before calling the Senators’ 5-2 victory in Game One on Thursday night. “If the locals want to listen to Rick and Jim I can appreciate it. I would just love for them to give us a chance, get to know us and they’ll like what they’ll hear.”
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