Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Make The Call

from the CP via TSN,

Commissioner Gary Bettman says officials who don't call penalties as warranted during the NHL playoffs will soon find themselves watching the post-season from the sidelines. That message has been made clear to Colin Campbell, senior executive vice-president of hockey operations, and Stephen Walkom, director of officiating, he said on a conference call Wednesday. "My instructions to Colie and to Stephen are if an official puts his whistle away, they should put the official away for the rest of the playoffs," Bettman said.
read on added 7:10pm, You can listen to the Bettman press conference via NHL.com (will open wmp audio).

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Esche Named Starter

from the AP via the Ledger,

The Philadelphia Flyers need Robert Esche to block shots better than he predicts. Less than a month ago, Esche said rookie Antero Niittymaki would be the Flyers' starting goaltender in the playoffs. On Wednesday, coach Ken Hitchcock gave the job to Esche. Considering Esche played seven of the last nine regular-season games, the decision was no surprise.
continued

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The Roundtable

The Toronto Star's Chris Young asked a few hockey bloggers to participate in the NHL playoff roundtable at his jabs blog. You will get a different view from many of the bloggers and is well worth your time to visit. I felt honored to participate and join Eric McErlain, James Mirtle, Chris McMurtry and Tom Benjamin and will keep you posted when part 2 is posted. image

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Wings Updated TV Schedule

Friday night's game at Joe Louis Arena will be telecast on WJBK-TV Fox2 and as noted earlier, Sunday's game will be on NBC. Game 5, if needed, also will be on NBC. Games 3, 4, 6 and 7 will be on the FSN-Detroit. added 2:13pm, Holland was just on Detroit radio and said NBC had a lot of say regarding the starting day for the Wings/Oilers schedule. Holland said if they would have started the series on Saturday, they would have had to play back-to-back in Edmnonton and he was dead-set against that.

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CBC Breakdown

For the Canadien readers of KK, plus those lucky enough in the States to get CBC. A complete breakdown of coverage for the 1st round.

They're back! For the first time since the conclusion of the 2003/04 Stanley Cup Final, CBC'S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA drops the puck on NHL post-season action on Friday, April 21 at 7 p.m. ET. From the opening face-off through to the crowning of the 2006 Stanley Cup champion, CBC'S HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA continues a beloved, 54-year-long tradition of bringing Canadians unparalleled coverage of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and exclusive Canadian coverage of the Stanley Cup Finals.
read on added 11:36am, TSN 1st round schedule...

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Enough Of This

from the Toronto Sun,

Ratings for games of the new and improved NHL on NBC are down a whopping 21% from ABC's numbers two years ago. The problem isn't the game. The problem is the way they're marketing it. Canadians will watch anything that involves a puck, while our American tele-tubby cousins love reality shows. They don't know from clutch and grab unless its happening behind the bedroom door in Trading Spouses. Mention excessive stickwork and they think Bill Clinton. If the NHL is to break into the U.S. television market it needs to rebrand itself: 1) Rename playoffs Survivor: Ice Mountain.
more

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His Time Of Year

from Martin Brodeur, special to the Edmonton Sun,

Since I joined the NHL, I've made it to the playoffs every season except one. For me, it's the best time of the year. Spring has arrived, and we all feel rejuvenated simply at the idea of launching into a series of games that could lead us all the way to a Stanley Cup - if the pieces fall in the right places for the team. I must say that playing hockey is highly enjoyable these days. Although the pressure lessened a bit since we ensured our spot in the final eight, we really wanted to win our remaining regular games.
continued

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Getting Physical

from the Calgary Sun,

Randy Carlyle made an accusation. Jarome Iginla responded with a promise. One day after the Calgary Flames and Anaheim Mighty Ducks wrapped up the regular season in scrappy fashion, the Flames captain was informed the Ducks coach believed the Flames were targeting his stars. Iginla responded by guaranteeing the Ducks more of the same. "From our point of view, we're going to try to be as physical as we can within the rules -- I don't think that's a secret," said Iginla, whose club racked up 62 penalty minutes in Monday's meaningless 4-3 loss in Anaheim.
continued

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Breakdown & Hero Or Villain

ESPN does a great job breaking down each series in the East and the West. They also predict who can be either the hero or villain from each series. Good reads and a nice spot to reference if you have any questions during the first round.

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Quinn Points At The Salary Cap

from the Globe and Mail,

Pat Quinn has resisted, at least in public, to attribute his team's woes this season to the new salary-cap system. But the Toronto Maple Leafs' coach could not withstand the temptation on the final day of the regular season. "If you want to build a team through the draft, be crappy for a long time," Quinn said. "Here you have the teams with no [payroll] come along picking all the good ones [in the National Hockey League entry draft] because they finished out of the playoffs. Now they had cap money to go out and buy some good free agents. "We had a tough job to build on the group we had."
more

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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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