Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

That One Loss

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

NHL players pay lip service to the fact that a win in October is as important as a win in December, which is as important as a win in early April, but you never get the sense they actually believe it — or until they arrive at the final week and find themselves with just enough of a cushion to sneak into the playoffs.

Take the NHL’s Western Conference race for example. If playoffs were determined only by how a team finished up, then the Edmonton Oilers would be on their way to the post-season, thanks to their wonderfully entertaining surge of the past seven weeks, which came after injuries to Shawn Horcoff, Sheldon Souray, Ethan Moreau and others looked as if it would doom them to the conference cellar again.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Conference Call Transcript: Jacques Lemaire

Today, the Minnesota Wild’s head coach Jacques Lemaire was made available by way of a NHL teleconference. With 95 points the Wild sit in first place in the Northwest Division, two points ahead of Colorado and three ahead of the Calgary Flames, who they host tomorrow night.  A victory would guarantee a division championship and home ice in at least in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.


Here’s the transcript of Lemaire’s Q&A session.



Q. Jacques, one of the things I noticed about your team is how good your record is in special teams play and how important that’s been during the regular season. I’d like you to comment on the power play. You’re eighth best in the league, penalty killing second best in the league. How much has that influenced your success this season and how important will it be in the playoffs versus the regular season?

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: coaching, conference+call, interview, jacques+lemaire, playoffs

Bolts Plan To Play To The Bitter End

from Lightning Strikes,

Coach John Tortorella agreed in the bigger picture, these games are tough. As he said. “I can’t wait till this (bleep) is over.’’ But he said he does not agree that you give in to a situation.

“It disgusts me,’’ he said. I don’t agree with it and I never will. You play to the bitter end. We’re going to fight as a coaching staff to the bitter end, and I think players should be that way, especially in a young group that we have with the core being our leadership. They need to set an example.’

It better start tonight, which begins a back-to-back against two very motivated opponents, the Hurricanes and Capitals, who are fighting for the division title and a playoff spot.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Tampa Bay Lightning, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Conference Call Transcript: Mike Keenan

Today, the NHL’s Public Relations Department provided Calgary Flames head coach Mike Keenan for media teleconference. The Flames currently have 92 points and reside at 7th seed in the Western Conference.  They trail Minnesota in the NW Division by three points and are one point the behind Colorado with one game in hand.

Here’s the transcript from the media’s Q&A time with ‘Iron Mike.’


Q. There’s so much parity in the league and so much has to be decided in the last five days here. Do you have any sort of theory on why it’s so close? We have seen it now in three straight years since the lockout. I have my own theory, it may have to do with the shootout point, but go ahead and answer that.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Calgary Flames, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: coaching, mike+keenan

Hot Goalies Going Into The Playoffs

from STATS Blog,

The play of Marc-Andre Fleury and his Penguin teammates makes Pittsburgh one of the favorites to reach the Stanley Cup finals. Minnesota’s Nicklas Backstrom has the Wild on the verge of their first Northwest Division title, and he will be key to how far the defensive-minded Wild advance in the playoffs.

Equally noteworthy is the 11-0-1 record of San Jose’s Evgeni Nabokov since March 1.

read on for some graphic proof…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Here Is Your Chance To Make A Difference

from Mike Brophy of the Hockey News,

The NHL wants YOU!

That is, if you are a graduating college or university hockey player and are interested in trying to climb the ladder to the big leagues – as an official.

Stephen Walkom, the NHL’s senior vice-president and director of officiating, says the league has embarked on a recruiting program aimed at directing players into the world of officiating.

continued

Filed in: NHL Talk, NHL Officiating, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Afternoon Line

from Japers’ Rink,

Add another vote to the “Ovechkin for MVP” campaign, this from rival Evgeni Malkin:

“I still have chances to become the MVP this season, however I am sure that Alexander Ovechkin is the best player in NHL this season and he will win this award.”

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alexander+ovechkin, evgeni+malkin

NHL Hits In HD

The Top 10 hits of the last week in the NHL, brought to you in HD!

Watch now…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Media, NHL Video, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Canadians Stealing Americans

from Bob McKenzie of TSN,

Take that, Uncle Sam.

With the naming today of Kelowna defenceman Tyler Myers to Canada’s U-18 team, Hockey Canada is reversing the trend that has seen various editions of Team USA scoop dual citizens out of Canada’s hockey backyard.

Myers was born in Texas but moved to Alberta when he was 10 years old. He played his minor hockey in Calgary, attended Notre Dame College in Wilcox, Sask., and has now just completed two full seasons with the Kelowna Rockets of the WHL.

continued

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, International Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Morning Talk

from ESPN,

The playoffs are just around the corner and we’re getting ready. During the last week of the regular season (well, at least Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m.-noon ET), ESPN.com NHL writer Scott Burnside and NHL editor Joy Russo will preview and review….

Burnside (11:20 a.m.) No kidding. Can you imagine a Rangers-Devils series? Both teams play it pretty close to the vest, and with Henrik Lundqvist and Brodeur going toe to toe, well, let’s just say I hope they sell pillows with the tickets in both rinks.

Russo (11:17 a.m.): Zzzzzzzzzzzzz ... dump ... trap ... chase ... shut down ... I AM AWAKE NOW!

Burnside (11:16 a.m.): If you watched any of the Devils-Islanders game last night—and if you did you no doubt had a good night’s sleep—you can see why the Devils look exactly like they have for most of a decade.

read on for more chat which will end at noon today…

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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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 pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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