Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Damien Cox at ESPN,
So nobody, it’s fair to say, feels bad just yet for the Canadiens. If another 30 years go by, well, then we’ll see about sympathy.
But here’s what’s interesting.
This season has been such a trying experience for the Canadiens, with such a wide variety of on-ice and off-ice problems, that, lo and behold, this franchise just doesn’t feel that special any more.
Combined with the long wait since the last Cup, it seems ordinary, really.
More just like any number of other teams in the rapidly changing culture of a league in which teams like Carolina, Tampa Bay, Dallas and Colorado—teams that weren’t even in existence when Patrick Roy led the Habs to the ‘86 Cup—have made it to the mountaintop.
A year and a half ago equipment manufacturer Eagle Hockey launched an equipment design contest, spurring an avalanche of concept pad designs from goalies around the world.
Chris Le submitted 4 designs following a similar theme. The designs were titled Eagle Head, Eagle Wings, Eagle Talons, and my personal favorite Eagle Phoenix….
After a lengthy selection process, Chris was selected as the winner and flown to the Eagle hockey factory in London, Ontario for a tour of the facilities, and to meet the staff.
read on... great story…
from Jennifer Raimondi at NHL.com,
The dynamics of the penalty shot have come a long way since the inception of the rule.
“I believe the penalty shot is going to be very spectacular,” legendary Toronto Maple Leafs General Manager Conn Smythe said in October, 1934.
Later that year, when Montreal Canadiens star Armand Mondou became the first player to take a penalty shot, Mondou stood in a circle 38 feet in front of the goal and was stopped by legendary Maple Leafs goaltender George Hainsworth. No fakes, no ‘spin-a-rama,’ just a standing-still shot from the circle.
In today’s NHL, there is no telling when the next dazzling shootout move will be displayed. Smythe’s words, spoken more than 70 years ago, were prophetic, indeed.
read on... great article with video and stats…
from the Philadelphia Flyers,
Flyers forward Todd Fedoruk returned to the Philadelphia area following his overnight stay at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Manhattan. Fedoruk left Wednesday night’s Flyers-Rangers game after a fight with Colton Orr.
Below is a brief Q and A with Fedoruk regarding his condition.
Q: Did the fight you have earlier this year when you were playing with Anaheim (which resulted in having plates put in your face) make you tentative in your fighting since then?
Fedoruk: “Very much so. I think anybody would be tentative with an injury like that. It is just a matter of time until I get back to my style. I am not really worried about it, but being tentative, you have to put yourself out there and when you change your style a little bit you leave yourself vulnerable and that’s what happened to me last night. I am not worried about it. I will get back on track. I have had worse things done to me than this.”
added 4:26pm, What the Flyers thought of the fight…from the Philadelphia Flyers,
The skill players appreciate what guys like Fedoruk and Orr do night in and night out.
“It’s the toughest job in sports,” said Knuble. “You can’t compare it to boxing or what a boxer does, these guys are out there bare-knuckling. Guys are getting bigger and stronger. It’s dangerous.”
from Terry Frei at ESPN,
In the NHL, it isn’t only about records and record-breaking moments.
It is about the ineffable concept of “class,” a term that always triggers a few e-mail responses from English literature majors who point out that it is a vanilla and misused term. And I always tell them I prefer that they move on to combat the misuse of “hopefully,” “irregardless,” “110 percent,” or “could care less.”
Because don’t we know what “class” is?
It certainly isn’t ignoring a milestone because the player is wearing the “wrong” sweater.
It also involves what often seems to be NHL franchises’ reluctance to mandate and embrace the concept that the game, the sport and the league itself all should be “sold” to a generally savvy fan base that cares about more than the guys on the home-team roster.
from Wade Babineau’s blog at The Guardian,
Those of you with an NHL TV package would have seen it live. The rest of us saw it on the highlight reels later that night, but the fight between Colton Orr of the New York Rangers and Todd Fedorak of the Philadelphia Flyers is on the lips of everyone this morning.
No doubt the anti-hockey fighting groups are writing letters and sending e-mails as I write.
Well let’s analyze the fight. I’ve watched it on YouTube several times and before the fight started Orr had circled the ice and tapped Fedorak on the leg. He turns around sees Orr and immediately drops the gloves.
added 1:40pm, A KK reader passed on an interesting post at Japers’ Rink…
the NHL should pass a rule whereby a) a player who gets in multiple fights over a given span of time gets suspended, and b) a player who receives a concussion in a fight and gets in another fight over a different time period gets similarly suspended.
from Jim Kelley at Sportsnet,
The Buzz: You can’t get Americans to watch a hockey game without dressing it up with a healthy dollop of good old fist-in-your-face violence.
The BACKHAND: For the record (and you can look it up) the highest-rated Versus Network hockey telecast ever was last week’s game between the swift-skating Buffalo Sabres and the similarly inclined Pittsburgh Penguins. The game didn’t have a single fight, almost no penalties and was a breathtaking, edge-of-your-seat affair that featured Buffalo coming back from a two-goal deficit in the closing minutes of play before Pittsburgh pulled out the win via a walk-off shootout goal from Sidney Crosby before a sellout crown in the supposedly decrepit Mellon Arena.
read on and much more Buzz & Backhand topics…
From Wayne Scanlan at CanWest News,
They are a secondary consideration to the playoff races. When the playoffs begin, they will be utterly forgotten until the Stanley Cup has been awarded. Then, the presentation of the NHL individual awards will be the last, glitzy act in a long season. Just because the focus is on team dreams at this time of year, the league's top performers haven't forgotten about the pursuit of individual honours, which involve races just as tight as those conference standings hockey fans pore over every morning.continued... with speculation on candidates for the Hart, Art Ross, Calder, etc.
from Spector at his Fox Sports Blog,
This isn’t the first time I’ve read and heard of supposed bias against the NHL’s Western Conference from hockey fans, but a closer examination of the facts suggests otherwise.
First, scheduling in terms of travel is considerably tougher for Western teams, but that’s the result of geography. All the Eastern Conference teams are within one time zone and in many cases a quick one or two hour plane trip apart.
In the West, however, the teams are spread further apart and between three time zones (central, mountain and pacific). It’s unfortunate, but not the result of any bias against them.
more.. plus, don’t forget there are two teams in the West that are in the eastern time zone…
from the Ottawa Citizen,
“He doesn’t mind talking on the bench, let’s put it that way,” said Crosby. “It’s not the first time (he has said something to me). That’s just the way it is.
“If he wants to say that I’m disrespectful to him, if he feels he wants to do that, that’s fine.
“It’s not right, but if he wants to do that, so be it.
“I didn’t speak to him until he started making gestures.
“But what I was saying was, ‘Why are you looking at me?’ There was absolutely no reason for him to be yelling at me.”
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 email@example.com