Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Russo’s Rants,
Jacques Lemaire, without much prodding I may add, called out his “skilled players” after today’s practice, saying their scoring slumps have become an “emergency” as the Wild continue to be severely offensively challenged (two goals or fewer in 15 games).
He says they need to work harder to get out of these slumps and that there’s a difference in opinion in what they think “working hard” means and what the coaches think “working hard” means.
Of all the people to bang the “let’s pick on the goalies because we only need to pick on thirty guys to increase goal scoring” drum, Eric Duhatschek certainly went on the attack last Tuesday afternoon:
Two years after the NHL introduced rule changes in order to spur offence - limits to obstruction, no more centre red line for offside, a trapezoid behind the net to limit goalies handling the puck — it appears as if goaltenders are in the ascendancy again.
Scoring is down almost a goal per game since the early post-lockout days. The rule changes — and rule enforcements — may have changed the game for the better, but it did nothing to help the bottom line. For anyone who wanted to see an up-tick in scoring, it just hasn’t happened.
via Bob McKenzie of TSN,
Burke is sitting on some deals that could be done in a heartbeat. He could move veteran Defenceman Sean O’Donnell for a draft pick or package defenceman Shane Hnidy and forward Brad May and the financial issues would be solved. But Burke is entertaining the idea of a “hockey trade” that would improve the Ducks and defenceman Mathieu Schneider would be part of that were it to happen.
from Thrashers Blog,
A couple of you noticed Fred Brathwaite’s disappearance from the Chicago Wolves. He got a bunch of money from a Russian team to play there. Officially, he was suspended by the Thrashers for failure to report, but there’s little the team can do about it because there’s no agreement with the Russian hockey federation.
more on the Thrashers including Recchi’s first practice…
From the CP via TSN,
Murray employs a tough style that is ‘‘demanding not demeaning’’ and puts a lot of responsibility on the players. After arriving in St. Louis, he found a group of men that felt as if they had let down Mike Kitchen, the man Murray replaced behind the bench.
The Blues have gone a combined 43-28-10 since - including 16-10-1 so far this season. His message to the players has been simple.
‘‘Basically we just tried to sell a belief system that if we played hard every night and competed that we would have an opportunity to be successful,’’ said Murray. ‘‘Losing is misery ... I think the players were just fed up with the way they were feeling here.’‘
From Pierre LeBrun at Sportsnet.ca,
Crosby will definitely be “The Man” in the NHL for the next 15 years and deservedly so. But are people overlooking what Lecavalier is doing for the Tampa Bay Lightning right now?
“He is the best player in the league; I don’t think there’s any question about that,” Lightning GM Jay Feaster said on the phone to Sportsnet.ca from Tampa on Monday. “I thought he was the best player in the league last year. I think he’s the most complete two-way player in the game today.”
An assistant coach has been suspended three years for his involvement in a bench-clearing hockey brawl between two teams of eight-year-old players.
Randy Brant of the Niagara Falls Thunder will not be allowed to coach or be involved in minor hockey in any way after leaving the bench during the melee in a tournament in Guelph, Ont., on Nov. 23.
The suspension was handed down by the Ontario Minor Hockey Association over the weekend.
Brendan Shanahan speaking to Darren Eliot at Sports Illustrated,
“The referees seem to be letting a little more go in the way of physical battles in the corners and in front of the net,” he noted. “So it is tough to score goals.”
These weren’t gripes. “Look, every night is a tough game,” he said. “If you’re off just a little, you won’t win. That’s why you can’t press in tight situations. Detroit is so experienced that they have patience to play their style no matter what the score is. When you get away from that, teams capitalize.”
via the Philadelphia Flyers,
The Philadelphia Flyers announced that they have traded defenseman Jussi Timonen to the Dallas Stars in exchange for a conditional draft choice in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, according to club General Manager Paul Holmgren.
added 3:13pm, via the Dallas Stars,
The Dallas Stars announced today that the club has acquired defenseman Jussi Timonen from the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for a seventh round draft pick in 2009. The Stars then assigned Timonen to the Iowa Stars, Dallas’ primary development affiliate in the American Hockey League.
from Al Strachan at Fox Sports,
Fans of the Anaheim Ducks are delighted that Scott Niedermayer has decided to end his self-imposed retirement and return to the team.
But should they be? And what about all the other hockey fans? How should they feel about it?
The answer is that when you get right down to it, there is cause for concern for everyone in this situation.
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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