Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Clarke OK With Goalie Situation

from the Courier Post,

Flyers general manger Bob Clarke isn't going to weigh in on whom he thinks should be the Flyers' No. 1 goaltender, but he will say this: He has no problem with anything Robert Esche has said in the past few days. "I don't have a problem with it at all," Clarke said when asked Tuesday night about Esche's belief that Antero Niittymaki has beaten him out as the club's top netminder. "There was no criticism of the coaches, no criticism of the team. It's his assessment, and we don't even know if he's right."
read on

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Cory Who

from the News & Observer,

Cory Stillman says he can walk into any mall or restaurant in the Triangle and go unrecognized. Not that he really minds. It's just that Stillman looks like so many other 30-somethings. With his closely cropped hair and average build, he could be mistaken for the guy who serves up the beer at the Carolina Ale House rather than the one who serves up another assist to Eric Staal for the Carolina Hurricanes. Stillman's teammates say the veteran forward plays an understated game, one that mirrors his demeanor: hardly loud and flashy, but more solid, consistent and productive.
continued

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NHL Ref Writes Letter Of Support

from Hockey Refs,

NHL referee Dave Jackson was one of many who wrote a letter in support of disgraced ex-lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Jackson, a Canadian from suburban Montreal, Quebec, asked U.S. District Court Judge Paul C. Huck to give a lenient sentence on fraud charges Wednesday.
more More on Abramoff from CNN.

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Hitchcock’s Thinking

from the Morning Call,

How does Hitch think? That's the story, because figuring that out will ultimately lead to the answers we want. To begin with, he thinks a lot, and not just about Xs and Os. Hitch is a firm believer in the psychology of the team dynamic; that without first building a solid foundation off the ice, there can't be a sustained success on it. ''You can't think about winning hockey games until you build a team first,'' he explained.
more

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Minnesota Feasts On Oilers

from Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun,

The Oilers were first in their division at Christmas, telling the world they were for real. The Wild came in here and won back-to-back when they got back from the break. The Oilers had won five of seven when they came home and lost another one to the Wild before the Olympic break. And there they were last night, a playoff position on a platter coming off two huge back-to-back wins over Vancouver and Colorado on the road, and that Wild card in their deck got them again. The result took away more than two points.
more

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Throw Away The Razors

from the Journal News,

The start of hirsute hockey, aka the postseason, is three weeks away. Gentlemen, start your beards. Actually, the tradition is for players to shave on the eve of the playoffs, then not touch a razor again until their team is eliminated, the superstition being if it ain't broke, don't shave it. The origins of the playoff beard are not clearly defined. Some point to the Islanders' squad that won four Stanley Cups from 1980-83 as the originators.
read on

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Renney Thinks Of His Players

via the NY Post,

The rafters above the Rangers' practice ice are adorned with the same jerseys and banners that hang in the Garden. This week, Renney added eight flags at the practice facility, one for each nationality of his players.

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Power Struggle In Toronto

from Al Strachan of the Toronto Sun, It's possible that the media have jumped the gun in their assumption that he'll be fired after the season. There is definitely a power struggle under way between Quinn and general manager John Ferguson Jr., but the winner has yet to be determined. The eventual outcome is not a matter that Quinn wishes to ponder publicly. "Whatever happens down the way is going to happen," he said. "I'm not going to lose my sense of priority dreaming or thinking about some other things." more added 8:02am, from the Toronto Star,

Quinn has a year remaining on his contract, but the speculation is that he won't be behind the Toronto bench next year. However, it is believed that Quinn still has considerable support within the board of governors at Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment, so the chances of him being firing can't be considered a slam-dunk. And there is speculation that the 63-year-old coach could end up with a job in the front office of MLSE.
read on

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Playoff Spot May Come Down To A ‘Golden Goal’

Does anyone else think a playoff spot in either the West or the East is going to hedge on a missed or made shootout goal?

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Jack Johnson Staying At Michigan

from TSN,

Despite the best efforts of the Carolina Hurricanes, defenceman Jack Johnson has decided to remain at the University of Michigan for at least one more year. Johnson, the third overall pick in last summer's NHL Entry Draft, informed the Hurricanes through his family advisor on Tuesday that he would not turn pro at this time, even though the Hurricanes made a concerted bid to sign him and immediately insert him into the NHL team's lineup for the stretch drive and playoffs.
continued

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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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