Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
Sometime over the next week to 10 days, scribes, pundits and self-styled experts from all over the hockey world will analyze the NHL’s opening playoff round the way a good CPA analyzes the tax act.
They will dissect tendencies. They will crunch numbers. They will consider individual matchups and all manner of statistical minutiae.
No detail, in short, will be ignored. All will be weighed and measured and then and only then will a final judgment be passed in the form of a “prediction.”
from the CP via the Winnipeg Free Press,
KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (CP) — The owner of the Ottawa Senators is delivering gifts including $50,000 worth of hockey equipment to Canadian troops in Afghanistan. Eugene Melnyk is visiting the NATO base in Kandahar.
Melnyk stepped off of a C130 Hercules transport aircraft wearing body armour and carrying an army helmet.
The troops — for whom ball hockey is a major pastime — are getting new goalie equipment, hockey sticks, inline skates, balls and NHL and Team Canada jerseys.
The billionaire businessman is also delivering 2,500 Tim Hortons gift certificates.
from the Times-Tribune,
Sure, the money is much better in the NHL and there’s always that bit about fulfilling one’s lifelong dream of playing in the best league in the world, but the move also required the atmospheric change of going from a winning team to a losing environment and a sold-out building to a half-empty one.
Those days are officially over.
The parent Penguins are now the next big thing in the NHL, a club with plenty of offensive flash and some of the best young talent in the world. Not only have they clinched a postseason berth, they’re heading into the last week of the regular season with a chance to win a division title.
And perhaps more than any other player, Erik Christensen is riding the wave.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
Next time, maybe Snow won’t allow his heart to make personnel decisions for him, such as the one where he signed his college teammate, Mike Dunham - coincidentally the fellow the Rangers obtained after Richter went down with the second concussion - to back up DiPietro. Snow may have been best man at Dunham’s wedding, but that obviously didn’t translate into Dunham being best man for Snow’s previous job.
And perhaps Snow might want to explain why he didn’t exercise a waiver claim on Jason Strudwick and block the Rangers from adding the veteran defenseman to their roster two weeks ago.
from the Newark Star-Ledger:
Devils chairman Jeff Vanderbeek remains optimistic that construction on the new arena in Newark will be completed in time for the early October start of the 2007-08 season and he said yesterday if there is a delay in the opening of the Prudential Center, the team will not play any games at Continental Airlines Arena despite the fact that New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority officials have dates available.
Vanderbeek suggested Meadowlands officials are holding out hope of scheduling Devils home games early next season to discredit the club’s move to Newark.
“It’s an effort to try to put holes in the credibility of the timetable for Newark,” Vanderbeek said. “We have no agreement whatsoever with the Meadowlands to play there (next season). It’s an absolute lie.”
Although NHL officials have indicated it would not be surprising to see the Devils play games in Continental Airlines Arena early next season, Vanderbeek said the team would look elsewhere. The most likely scenario would be opening on the road for a prolonged period.
from the Boston Herald:
NCAA rules forced Mark Stuart to wear a face shield throughout his career at Colorado College, but when he turned pro he immediately ditched the protective headgear.
The young defenseman, Boston’s first-round pick in 2003, had to put on a visor again this year in Providence when the AHL made them mandatory. And he kept it on when he was recalled to Boston on March 23. But last week, the urge to get rid of the shield proved too much to resist.
“When I first came up, I figured I’d be heading back down there (to Providence) sooner or later, so I’d have to put it back on anyway,” Stuart said. “So I thought I’d just keep it on. But it was just too tempting to take it off. Given the choice, I’d just rather have it off.”
Ironically, Stuart’s father, Mike, is a medical advisor to USA Hockey and has long been an advocate for eye and facial protection. Mark Stuart might have some explaining to do back at the family dining table, but the authority figure he has to answer to these days isn’t concerned with Stuart’s choice of headgear.
Fear of looking less manly than peers 1, common sense 0.
NEW YORK (March 31, 2007)—For tonight’s New York Islanders’ game against the Ottawa Senators, the NHL is honoring the International Ice Hockey Federation’s request that the NHL enforce the German Ice Hockey League’s indefinite suspension of New York Islanders defenseman Todd Simpson.
The suspension was issued as the result of an abuse of official penalty assessed against Mr. Simpson while he was playing for the Hannover Scorpions of the German Ice Hockey League, in the Scorpions’ last play-off game against the Sinupret Ice Tigers.
The International Ice Hockey Federation has advised the NHL that the German Ice Hockey League will hold a hearing on Monday concerning the incident. The NHL will review the German Ice Hockey League’s determination when it is made and will thereafter determine Mr. Simpson’s status.
Thanks to KK Member SteveNJ...
Into the home stretch folks, now that we know the NBC will be our home next season, let’s keep watching this season.
In other NBC news, they will be airing a special 30-minute pre-game show on April 14th, before their initial coverage of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Great news for hockey addicts everywhere.
The NHL On NBC Countdown to Faceoff
Host: Bill Clement
Analysts: Brett Hull and Ray Ferraro
12:30 PM ET
NHL On NBC
Game of the Week
Detroit Red Wings vs. Columbus Blue Jackets
AVAILABLE IN HD
Play By Play: Mike Emrick
Color: Eddie Olczyk
Inside the Glass: Pierre McGuire
Reporter: Brett Hull
Will air in 83.8% of the U.S., and in the following NHL markets in the United States: Detroit, Columbus, Chicago, St. Louis, Nashville, Minnesota, Colorado, Dallas, Phoenix, Boston, Buffalo, NY Rangers, NY Islanders, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Carolina, Florida, Tampa Bay Washington.
from the Calgary Herald,
But these days — with the grass greening, with the nerves tingling, with the consequences soaring — you’d better lean on that stick. Hard.
“Oh yeah,” says Stephane Yelle, who’s taken — and won — his fair share of springtime faceoffs. “Everything’s amplified now.”
In case the point is still unclear, the Calgary Flames pivot spells out the ramifications of playoff dot-duty. Seven months of honest toil can come down to a single pressure-packed flick of the wrists — yours.
“A big draw in your own end? It can mean the end of it,” says Yelle. “Or a big draw in the offensive zone? Maybe you get a goal and move on.”
Today, we welcomed our 400th member which also means a random drawing will be held for a $25 gift certificate to Shop.NHL.com. Any KK member from #1 to #400 is eligible and I will post the winner in this post shortly.
Another random drawing will be held when we reach 600 members.
Also, don’t forget about the latest KK Challenge, where you have to display your writing skills to be eligible for an authentic NHL jersey of your choice.
update 3:00pm, KK member Rebecca is the winner of the $25 gift certificate to Shop.NHL.com!
Please visit KK often and look for more random drawings and KK Challenges in the near future.
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