Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Alan Ryder of the Globe and Mail,
So-called “power rankings” are not the solution. These are, almost always, an opinion, or a committee view, and they tend to mix up the questions of team abilities and “who is hot and who is not”.
There are, however, scientific approaches to rating teams. Jeff Sagarin is probably the most famous sports team rater on the planet, but there are a couple of others out there worth of note — Ken Massey and Andy Dolphin .
Here is how the NHL and these scientific methods rank the top NHL teams today:
read on and Wings and Sens still rank 1 & 2…
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
What they need to do now is demonstrate their turnaround wasn’t just an aberration, achieved at the expense of a handful of struggling opponents, but a sign that the team is finally coming together after a rocky start. Conroy always puts it so well. When the Flames lose, they’re an old team. When they win, they’re experienced — presumably experienced enough to know that all they’ve really done is given themselves a chance to make the playoffs. The real work still lies ahead.
This morning, I pointed to a story comparing the travel miles logged for the Canucks and Devils.
Well, KK member shep has some mile numbers through last night for all NHL teams…
No real stunner about Anaheim and L.A. topping the list. If we pretend their season opening home-and-home was in California rather than the UK, the Ducks would drop down to sixth and the Kings clear to fifteenth.
I confess that I’m surprised at the ranking of some of the Southeast teams (Panthers, Thrashers, Lightning), particularly when you factor in that their division won’t travel any farther west than St. Louis this season.
Check out his work in the comments of that post…
From Darren Dreger at TSN,
Sources tell TSN that the New York Islanders and veteran forward Chris Simon have agreed that time away from the team is needed to come to terms with his recent on-ice behavior and potentially, his playing future.
Islanders owner Charles Wang met Simon earlier today to discuss the direction best suited to provide Simon with the support he deserves.
Simon has been granted time away from the team to seek counselling, or any other method to help restore his career.
Updated 3:48pm ET: Confirmation from the Islanders:
Charles Wang: “The actions of Chris Simon on Saturday do not reflect what the New York Islanders stand for. They were reckless, potentially dangerous and against our team concept of grit, character and heart.
“We know Chris as a respected teammate and as a gracious man away from the playing surface and believe strongly that he has earned our continued support. The Islanders are going to provide some time for Chris away from the team and give him the counseling he needs and the compassion he deserves.”
Still awaiting suspension news from the league.
From Empty Netters at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette,
According to James Mirtle, Crosby isn’t even anywhere near the league leaders in secondary assists.
So while there are plenty valid complaints of Crosby’s game (he tends to go down a little too easily sometimes in order to draw penalties in our book), ripping him for loading up on secondary assists in order to bulk up his points totals is stupid and inaccurate.
more, including a graphic breakdown showing Sid’s primary and secondary assists this season
from Mike Brophy of the Hockey News,
But what if Ovechkin doesn’t want to play in Washington any longer? What if the young superstar tells the Caps he’d prefer to play someplace a little more cosmopolitan than Washington? You know, it could happen.
And frankly, I think Caps GM George McPhee should, at the very least, explore the possibility of trading the 22-year-old sniper.
From Evan Weiner at MCN Sports,
The new Medvedev league isn’t going to create anymore interest in hockey in Europe. The existing Russia Super League is widely considered to be the second best level of competition circuit in the world behind the NHL. There is also a second league in Russia, the Premiere League. There are leagues throughout Europe and the National Hockey League has been hiring players from European countries for decades.
Getting players to perform in a new and what appears to be an eastern European league will not be a problem; there are more players than jobs available always. Getting teams properly financed is a major challenge. With the exception of London, Europe does not have North American style arenas with luxury boxes and club seats and in-house eateries that produce extra revenues. If Medvedev is serious about challenging the NHL financially, he better have deep pocketed owners who can afford to lose a lot of money.
Calgary Flames right wing Jarome Iginla, Dallas Stars defenseman Sergei Zubov and Philadelphia Flyers right wing Joffrey Lupul have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending December 16.
from the Thrashers Blog,
So, four consecutive losses, I think it’s safe to say we can expect some changes. What are they? We’ve seen the last of Kovalchuk and Hossa on the same line, for now. The addition of Mark Recchi gives Kovalchuk a potential scorer on the right wing, so that enables Don Waddell to move Hossa back to the second line. Perhaps this will help spark Slava Kozlov and boost Marian Hossa’s production. Hoss hasn’t been bad, but I don’t think he’s approached the production he had at this time last season. He’s on pace for under 80 points this season.
more on Atlanta…
Watch the NBC promo for the Winter Classic on January 1, 2008.
added 1:03pm, NBC Sports today announced that Bob Costas will host NBC’s broadcast coverage of the AMP Energy NHL Winter Classic between the Buffalo Sabres and Pittsburgh Penguins.
Costas has a history broadcasting hockey, serving as the play-by-play commentator for the Syracuse Blazers of the old Eastern Hockey League in 1973-74 and also occasionally filling in for the late, great Dan Kelly on KMOX’s St. Louis Blues radiocasts in the last 70s and early 80s.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org