Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Roy MacGregor at the Globe and Mail,
They have no nickname — Ducks, surely, is bad enough — but Bruce Hood says he couldn’t stop thinking that, somehow, the Broad Street Bullies were back in the Stanley Cup final.
Not the Ottawa Senators versus the Anaheim Ducks, as advertised. But the 2007 Ottawa Senators up against the Philadelphia Flyers, circa mid-1970s.
Hood is not as lost in time as it might appear. Something happened to the “new NHL” on Monday during Anaheim’s 3-2 victory. It became the “old NHL.” Or the “new new NHL,” where obstruction appears to have been welcomed back.
from the Pioneer Press,
Yearning to “break free of these chains” binding him to the Wild, goalie Manny Fernandez expects to be traded this summer and said Tuesday he wants to play for more supportive coaches and teammates than he has had in Minnesota.
With his bags packed for a transaction that might not occur, Fernandez said he has been “fighting against some demons” since the Wild acquired him before their inaugural 2000-01 season and is ready to move on with his $9.25 million contract.
from William Houston of the Globe and Mail,
The CBC’s telecast of the first game of the Stanley Cup final on Monday (Senators-Anaheim Ducks) drew an average audience of 2.608 million, down 14 per cent from the first game last year (Oilers-Carolina Hurricanes, 3.033 million).
The audience was off 15 per cent from the 3.063 million viewers who watched the first game of the 2004 final between the Flames and Tampa Bay Lightning….
In the United States, Versus did not receive a national rating Tuesday, but regionally, Buffalo produced the largest overnight, a 3.9 (percentage of households tuned in).
The Los Angeles market, where the Ducks play, produced a 1.7, the largest hockey rating Versus has earned in the market. Versus ranked fifth among the cable networks in Los Angeles from 8 p.m. EDT to 10:45 p.m.
from the CP via the Globe and Mail,
Pahlsson centres a line with Rob Niedermayer and Travis Moen on the wings and it had a huge impact in Anaheim’s 3-2 victory over the Ottawa Senators in the opener of the Stanley Cup final Monday night. Game 2 is Wednesday and the three hope to again play a prominent role.
Besides shutting down opponents’ top scoring lines, they’ve supplied 11 of Anaheim’s 47 goals in the team’s 16 playoff games. It’s been an unexpected bonanza for coach Randy Carlyle’s crew.
“We shudder to think where we would be without them,” says Carlyle.
Q. Bryan, other teams in these playoffs have talked about maybe the Ducks’ extra hacking and whacking at the goal on plays in front of the net and whatsoever. How much do you think - is that maybe them crossing the line at all? How much do you think - are you going to maybe voice that with Colin?
COACH BRYAN MURRAY: I think everybody sees what - I don’t have to say one word to anybody, really. I am. I have. But I don’t have to, because every time I talk to one of the league officials they’ve seen it and it’s a matter of application.
And I’m not sure if they do or not. I think there were a couple times last night where Ray Emery had the puck covered and there were two or three extra hacks at him.
But I asked one of the officials one comment, and he told me to go stand behind the bench. So it’s very hard for me to do anything other than be the guy behind the bench standing there and hope that somebody recognizes that there are levels that we’ve been told you play at, and it’s called accordingly.
But I can’t answer for the officials.
from the AP via Ft.Wayne.com,
Ron Wilson will return to coach the San Jose Sharks next season, general manager Doug Wilson said Tuesday after another week of self-evaluation and soul-searching for the playoff underachievers.
Ron Wilson and assistants Tim Hunter and Rob Zettler will get another chance to coax postseason success out of the Sharks despite a second-round playoff loss to the Detroit Red Wings last month. The postseason exit - culminating with three straight losses - infuriated Doug Wilson, apparently prompting the GM to consider major changes to his winning club.
“This coaching staff will be back, and I’ll look forward to the work we’re going to do,” Doug Wilson said.
Q. Ray, having a night to sleep on last night’s game, do you feel like maybe you’re not quite as far off as the 3-2 final score and maybe you guys are right there with these guys and maybe just a couple adjustments and you’ll be back in?
RAY EMERY: Yeah, that’s what I thought last night. We made a lot of mistakes. And definitely it didn’t play our type of game. And still gave ourselves a chance to win and still - in most cases when we have a lead going in the third we do win.
So if we correct even some of the mistakes, we’re looking pretty good. But we want to definitely correct a lot of those mistakes and we’re not short of confidence. If we correct those mistakes, we’re going to come out on top.
Enough of the complaining from the hockey “experts”!
Read on at my NHL.com blog.
from Greg Logan at Newsday,
One year after stepping aside as general manager of the Islanders to serve as senior vice-president in marketing, Mike Milbury on Tuesday announced his resignation from his full-time position in the organization.
Although Milbury will remain as an advisor to owner Charles Wang on the Project Hope youth hockey program they began two years ago in China, his move effectively ends his 12-year relationship with the Isles in terms of any major decision-making role. Milbury also served as coach three times and survived through four sets of owners.
added 4:30pm, from the New York Islanders,
“Charles gave me the opportunity of a new challenge for the last 18 months and I enjoyed every minute of it,” Milbury said this afternoon. “I’m very proud of our staff and the strides we made last season in corporate sales, customer service and community relations. Although it’s time for something different for me, I appreciate the challenge of continuing the work we started with Project Hope and the Children’s Foundation, among other projects.”
Canada vs California: a Stanley Cup war of media words. First, here’s Helene Elliott’s comments in the LA Times:
The Canadian media have cast the Senators in the role of Canada’s Team, even though the Ducks have more sons of the True North on their roster than do the Senators. And the label may not even be accurate.
Maple Leafs fans rarely care about anything that happens outside of Toronto, otherwise known as the Center of the Hockey Universe, so their support of the Senators is probably minimal, if it exists at all.”
more… (*requires registration)
To which Cox responds,
This stuff is so utterly idiotic it’s hard to even comment on it, particularly in a U.S. state with a larger population than all of Canada. More to the point, readers of the newspaper must be utterly confused by this silliness, which seems to roughly equate newspapers and television in Canada with state-controlled media from the old Soviet Union, thinking en masse and according to some approved national policy.
Note: For more on Helene Elliott, you can find my interview with her here from two weeks ago
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