Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Ducks Prospect Jordan Smith Loses Vision In Left Eye

from the Soo Today,

The professional hockey career of Mighty Ducks prospect Jordan Smith is over, after officials of Maine Medical Center announced tonight that he won't regain vision in his injured eye. The following news release was issued tonight by Portland Pirates: Smith is under the care of orbital specialist Dr. Natan D. Kahn M.D., and retinal specialist Dr. Jeffrey K. Moore M.D. "Today Jordan underwent a second surgery on his left eye, which was uncomplicated. It was determined pre-operatively that vision in the eye could not be restored and the intent of today's operation was to keep the eye comfortable and achieve the best cosmetic outcome. The surgery was successful in all aspects and he is recovering well and will be discharged tomorrow," said Dr. Moore.
read on

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Lidstrom Talks

It is not often that you hear an interview with Nick Lidstrom that lasts longer than a minute. Tonight, Lidstrom was a guest on the Mitch Albom radio show for about ten minutes. He talked about the Olympics (after having a team dinner when they won the gold, they went back to the Olympic village where they met up with the women from the gold medal winning Swedish curling team) and his future. Nick plans on taking it a year at a time, doesn't see himself playing at age 44 like Chelios, but is motivated by seeing Cheli and Yzerman performing at their age. He credits his success to his off-season workouts and his positioning on the ice. Mitch asked him about Babcock and he stated Babcock is doing a great job. Starting to get the Wings into playoff hockey mode, wants them to play more in a straight line, go directly to the net and play a little tougher. All in all a good interview, and nice not to hear he is thinking about retirement.

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Oprik Suspended

Penguins defenseman Brooks Oprik was just suspended for three games for his hit on Eric Cole. update 6:18pm, via NHL.com,

"While it is apparent that there was no deliberate intent to injure on this play, Mr. Orpik's careless hit on his opponent resulted in a serious injury," said NHL Executive Vice President and Director of Hockey Operations Colin Campbell. "Even if a player leaves himself vulnerable, the checking player does bear some responsibility in avoiding a hit on a defenseless opponent."

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Latest Trade Talk

from the CP via 940 Montreal,

Hockeytown will be quiet this week - a clear indication this won't be like previous NHL trade deadlines. "We used to get more calls here in other years for sure, people knew we had money to spend," Wings GM Ken Holland said with a laugh from his Detroit office Monday. "But that's OK, it's the same for everybody. Other teams are in the same position we're in."
more...all kinds of trade talk... Plus, if you heard rumors of Belfour coming to Detroit, you might want to check out Abel to Yzerman...

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Trades Will Be Made

from Darren Eliot of Sports Illustrated,

With the standings in both conferences so tightly compacted before Thursday's trade deadline, it isn't all that clear cut who the outright sellers are.... It will shock me if the first trade deadline with a salary cap in play fails to produce a few blockbuster trades. There are just too many enticing scenarios for the GM's around the league to idly ignore.
read on for all kinds of scenarios...

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Savard Soon To Calgary?

from Stan Fischler of MSG Network, -The talk of Calgary is that Marc Savard will soon be a Flame again. -The Toronto Sun’s Steve Simmons has a good question: “If you’re John Ferguson, Jr., do you sign Bryan McCabe for $5 million or wait for July and see if you can sign Zdeno Chara for upward of $7 million? You can build a winner around Chara. Can you build a winner around the nervous McCabe?” Our answer: No! more

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Sharks Trying To Find Their Way

from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,

For San Jose Sharks coach Ron Wilson, the most difficult part of a weirdly up-and-down season is that every time it looks as if his team is about to make that one final surge into a playoff spot, something bad happens... Nor is Wilson giving up hope. The Sharks made an organizational decision during the lockout to stick with home-grown prospects and not shop the free-agent market. Accordingly, there has been a significant turnover in their personnel since thee 2004 trip to the finals (and three more players, Marco Sturm, Wayne Primeau and Brad Stuart left in the Thornton trade). So they are a young group, new in the league and new to each other, still trying to find their way.
read on

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The Game Is Fun

from the Contra Costa Times,

Hahn's broadcasting career began almost accidentally. He was taking part in a weekend fund-raising event at his high school in Whitehorse, a small town in the Yukon Territory, east of Alaska. A radio station interviewed Hahn for a news story, and the station -- apparently impressed with Hahn and his voice -- gave him a job. "There I was, 15," Hahn, a Pleasanton resident, remembers. "I was spinning records on the radio and I was just a kid in high school." ..."I think, as the years have gone by, he becomes more and more associated with the Sharks," said Frank Albin, director of broadcasting for the Sharks. "In this day and age, when players move around from team to team every year, announcers have become the constant."
more If you are a regular reader of Kukla's Korner, you may recall I wrote about Randy Hahn back in mid-November. Little did I know back then that Randy was a Canadian!!!

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Another Theo Incident

from Hockey Refs,

He was called for a straight forward two-minute minor penalty for elbowing by referee Mike Hicks, but Fleury argued the call and refused to take his place in the penalty box before being assessed an additional 10-minute misconduct penalty. Later when the Bison scored an empty-net goal in the closing minute of play, he retrieved the puck and fired it at Hicks, reportedly missing the referee’s head by inches. Hicks replied by assessing game misconduct and match penalties, which expelled Fleury from the game.
more Two weeks ago, Fleury had enough to say he was not returning to the league next year. update 2:09pm, more on Theo from the CP via Sporstnet,
Fleury's future in Britain's Elite Ice Hockey League is in jeopardy after the ex-NHLer was ejected from Saturday's game between the Belfast Giants and the Basingstoke Bison.
update 2:48pm, photos from the game in question...

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Staal & Huet POW

from TSN,

Carolina Hurricanes forward Eric Staal, who tallied seven points (three goals, four assists) in three games, has been named the NHL’s Offensive Player of the Week for the period ending Sunday, March 5. Montreal Canadiens goaltender Cristobal Huet, who led Montreal to three victories with a 1.67 goals-against average and .943 save percentage, is the League’s Defensive Player of the Week.
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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